Sunderland’s largest supporters group, the Red & White Army (RAWA), formally converted into a Community Interest Company - more commonly known as a Supporters’ Trust - last summer following a historic vote of members.
The work of the Trust is very varied, ranging from meeting with the club during structured dialogue meetings, helping to organise the Roker End flag display, liaising with other supporters groups at Sunderland AFC including the Branch Liaison Council, the Senior Supporters Association, communicating with supporters groups at other clubs, working with the Football Supporters Association, engaging in the local community, promoting inclusivity and diversity, and taking part in local charitable initiatives alongside organisations such as the Foundation of Light.
Last week, the group notified members that the first Annual General Meeting (AGM) will be held on 13th October, 6.30pm at the Stadium of Light, and the group will be opening registrations to attend that meeting soon.
In an email to members on Wednesday evening, RAWA informed Sunderland fans who are paid-up members of the Red & White Army that they now have the opportunity to put themselves forward and stand for election to the Board of the Trust.
You stand for election to any of the roles of Chair, two Vice Chairs, Treasurer and Membership Secretary by completing this form and submitting it before midnight on 29th September. It is possible to stand for multiple roles, and you will need to write a supporting statement of between 400 – 1000 words about why your fellow members should give their vote to you at the AGM.
The group highly recommends that you follow the instructions on the form carefully and note that a seconder (another paid-up member of RAWA) is required to support the person standing.
Supporters’ Trusts are only as effective as the people who are members and who put themselves for these executive positions and how they work together with one another and with the hierarchy at the club. We need skilled, enthusiastic, professional, innovative, sensible, and committed people with the time and ability to communicate the wishes, hopes, needs, and desires of the fanbase to those in positions of power and responsibility at SAFC. As the email outlines:
Whilst these titles suggest responsibilities in particular areas, the current RAWA Board have worked very much as a team, sharing responsibilities and, of course, collaborating with co-opted representatives and liaising with the wider membership. It can be hard work at times but RAWA is extremely rewarding to be a part of, and we encourage members to consider standing.
Our first AGM as a full fledged Supporters' Trust will take place on 13th October at the SoL. Registration details to attend will be live soon. In the meantime members have an opportunity to stand for election to our Board. Details here https://t.co/0rmZkXFezR— Red & White Army (@RedAndWhite2017) September 15, 2021
If you’re not already a Trust member of RAWA but would like to be able to vote and/or stand for election now is the time to join for a minimum of £5 per year on the LoveAdmin membership platform.
I am acting as an impartial election officer for this years’ RAWA Board elections and, as Roker Report’s RAWA rep, I will do my best to keep our readers informed of the process over the next month ahead of the AGM.
The group will be back in touch with all members with further information on how to register to attend in the near future.