Statue

All aspects of functioning of KARAT Coalition including KARAT’s mission and objectives, implemented programs, projects and activities, as well as the KARAT’s structure and process of acceptance of new members are in line with the Statute of KARAT Coalition. The Statute is an outcome of the extensive process of development of KARAT and has been approved at the first General Assembly of the Coalition held in St. Petersburg, Russia in 2001. Since that the Statute has been amended twice by the General Assembly to respond to a growth of the organisation as well as the changes within the Region and outside it. The Statute which you will find below was amended in June 2010. Since KARAT is an organization registered in Poland, it also has the  Polish (Registered) Statute .

Amended version of the Statute passed by the General Assembly.
Bucharest, June 6, 2010

STATUTE
of KARAT COALITION

Section I
General Provisions

§ 1

KARAT COALITION is an international non-governmental organization based on voluntary membership of organizations and individuals.

§ 2

KARAT COALITION performs its activities on the territory of the Central and Eastern European and Central Asian countries, hereinafter called the Region. KARAT COALITION’s seat is located in Warsaw (Poland). The seat can be moved within the Region as the Board shall decide and if ratified by the General Assembly.

§ 3

1. KARAT COALITION is registered (on October 30/2001) as an association in Poland according to the Polish law dated 7 April 1989 – Law on Associations (Dz.U. No 20, item 104) and carries out its activities pursuant this Law and the provisions of this Statute. It is a corporate body.
2. KARAT COALITION is set up for an unlimited period.

§ 4

KARAT COALITION carries out its activities on the basis of voluntary work of its members. KARAT COALITION establishes a Secretariat and hires an Executive Director and employees to conduct the day-to-day affairs of KARAT COALITION.

§ 5

KARAT COALITION can be a member of international organizations of the same or related profile of activity.

 

Section II
Mission, Objectives and their implementation

§ 6

KARAT COALITION has the following mission:

KARAT is a regional coalition of organisations and individuals focusing its action on observance of women’s human rights, and ensuring gendered economic and social justice in the Region.

§ 7

KARAT COALITION has the following objectives:

1. Advocate for gender-responsive policy, decision-making and alignment of national policy and legislation in all countries in the Region with international standards and agreements.
2. Lobby for the needs and concerns of women in the Region at all levels of decision-making fora.
3. Contribute to the improvement of the socio-economic position of women of the Region.
4. Contribute to the actions related to gender aspects of development.
5. Respond to the threats associated with fundamentalist, conservative, and anti-democratic forces as well peril of military conflict.
6. Strengthen Karat’s capacity to deliver its mission.

§ 8

KARAT COALITION pursues its objectives through:

1. Monitoring the implementation of international standards and agreements at national level (e.g. PFA, Outcome documents of Beijing+5, CEDAW, others).
2. Lobbying policy and decision-makers and/or organise campaigns on aligning national policy with EU accession criteria on gender issues.
3. Supporting and where non-existent, lobby for creation of national machineries on gender equality.
4. Strengthening capacity and share resources (thematic, human, financial, information, best practices, lessons learned) in different specialised areas of expertise in support of engendering policy and decision-making and legislation.
5. Facilitating the participation of women leaders from the Region in global and interregional networks and events, building on existing leadership programs at all levels.
6. Organizing campaigns on specific gender issues.
7. Using Karat electronic and printed media as a tool in support of reaching its objectives.
8. Monitoring and lobbying for the implementation of the Platform for Action’s recommendations on peace and of other internationally agreed documents.
9. Supporting solidarity and collaboration across national, ethnic, religious and other boundaries.
10. Launching campaigns and organizing trainings on political stability and peace to overcome nationalism, ethnic confrontation and all forms of discrimination.
11. Enlarging Karat membership towards larger representation, credibility, etc.
12. Building strategic partnerships with networks and NGOs at ECE and EU level.
13. Developing strong lobbying mechanisms.
14. Strengthening Karat’s internal expertise.
15. Strengthening solidarity among Karat members.
16. Developing a media strategy in support of Karat mission.

 

Section III
Members, their rights and obligations

§ 9

Members of KARAT COALITION are:

1. Organizations as regular members
2. Individual members, women and men.

§ 10

A regular member of KARAT COALITION is any organization, that:

1. Agrees with and supports the statutory objectives of KARAT COALITION.
2. Fills a membership registration form and writes an application to the Board.
3. Has at least one year experience in gender equality issues.
4. Operates within the Region.
5. Is recommended in a written form, signed by two members of KARAT COALITION.
6. Is accepted by the Board.

§ 11

Regular members have the right to:

1. Participate, with a decisive vote, in the General Assembly.
2. Elect and be elected member of the bodies of KARAT COALITION. A new member can be elected to the Board after one year upon admission to KARAT COALITION and to the other bodies after six months.
3. Make proposals for the activities of KARAT COALITION. Regular member or group of members or individual member (see para 13, rights of individual member) can propose motion/s concerning KARAT COALITION’s strategy, program and/or activities. The written motion (with short justification) has to be submitted to the Board at least one month before the General Assembly. The motions are voted by the General Assembly.
4. Participate in all activities and projects of KARAT COALITION.

§ 12

Regular members are obliged to:

1. Comply with the Statute and Ethical Code and resolutions passed by the bodies of KARAT COALITION.
2. Actively pursue the mission and objectives of KARAT COALITION.

§ 13

Individual member:

1. A physical person (woman or man) who has extensive history (at least 3 years) of supporting/promoting KARAT COALITION in pursuing its statutory objectives is eligible to become an individual member.
2. Individual membership is accepted by the Board.
3. Any regular KARAT COALITION member can recommend to the Board a candidate for an individual member.
4. An individual member:
- has the advisory voice and all rights of a regular member, except passive and active right of vote,
- can make proposals for the activities of KARAT COALITION (see para 11, point 3)
- can participate in all activities of KARAT COALITION.

§ 14

Membership in KARAT COALITION expires in case of:

1. Voluntary resignation submitted in writing to the Board.
2. Dissolution of a given member organization.
3. Exclusion by decision of the Board, due to a failure to comply with the provisions of the Statute and resolutions passed by the bodies of KARAT COALITION or due to any action that has harmed the work of KARAT COALITION.

A member can appeal to the Board against a decision, which stipulates its exclusion from KARAT COALITION within 30 days. The General Assembly, whose decision shall be final, must consider the appeal.

§ 15

Principles of cooperation within KARAT COALITION

Members cooperate on basis of equal partnership as set by the principles of cooperation in the KARAT COALITION’s Ethical Code.

 

Section IV
Bodies of KARAT COALITION

§ 16

Bodies of KARAT COALITION are:

1. The General Assembly
2. The Board
3. The Executive Director
4. Other bodies (commissions, committees etc.) can be established by KARAT COALITION in order to pursue its mission.

§ 17

The General Assembly  is the supreme body, consisting of all regular members. In case the number of members of KARAT COALITION exceeds 100, additional regulations will be introduced for the General Assembly meetings.

The Regular General Assembly Meeting (either face-to-face or by electronic mail) is called by the Board every year-and-half. The members are notified thereof at least 30 days before the date of the General Assembly.

The Extraordinary (Exceptional) General Assembly Meeting (either face-to-face or by electronic mail) is called by the Board within two months:
1. At its own discretion.
2. Upon request in writing submitted by at least 1/5 of the regular members of KARAT COALITION.

The General Assembly has the powers to:

1. Receive and adopt the report on activities and finances of KARAT COALITION, presented by the Board.
2. Receive and adopt the annual reports of the various bodies, established by KARAT COALITION.
3. Adopt strategies and make decisions about the main concerns and finances of KARAT COALITION.
4. Elect, replace and revoke members of the Board or other bodies.
5. Examine appeals against the resolutions of the Board.
6. Examine matters, which do not fall into the competence of other bodies of KARAT COALITION.
7. Pass resolutions on the amendments to the Statute or dissolution of KARAT COALITION.
8. Establish or suppress the membership fee.

§ 18

The General Assembly passes its resolutions by a simple majority of votes, with 50% + 1 of the voting members of KARAT COALITION present. The General Assembly can take place if the KARAT COALITION Secretariat receives the confirmation of participation in the General Assembly from at least 50%+1 of the voting members of KARAT COALITION one month before the General Assembly. In case if a member who has confirmed its participation cannot reach the General
Assembly meeting (for different reasons), it will be asked to vote electronically or by other means within the deadline established by the Board, but not later than the end of the General Assembly. In case if it doesn’t answer, the GA meeting will take decisions without quorum. The members absent cannot, in this case, make any claims. Each member (it means an organization) has one vote. An individual member has not
right to vote.
In case face-to-face meeting cannot take place, voting is performed by electronic and other means of communications. The Board defines the rules for the electronic General Assembly.

§ 19

The Board is the decision-making body of KARAT COALITION between the General Assembly Meetings. It is responsible for all internal and external affairs in the periods between the meetings of the General Assembly.
1. The Board is comprised of 7 regular voting members from at least three countries and the co-opted non-voting Executive Director. Meetings of the Board are called, if feasible twice a year face to face and regularly on-line by the Executive Director. The Board is not paid.
2. The Board is elected by the General Assembly in a secret ballot (except in case of electronic voting), for a three-year term of office with one year-and-half alternation. Nominees provide at least two written recommendations from members of KARAT COALITION.
Board members may be re-elected one more time for further terms of office.
3. The Board takes decisions with consensus minus one. Voting is done only in irresolvable cases with at least more than half of the Board members present.
4. Membership of the Board expires when a notice of voluntary resignation is submitted in writing to the Board, or due to exclusion by a decision of the Board due to absence from at least two Board meetings.

The Board has the responsibility to:

1. Perform ultimate fiscal accountability.
2. Prepare activity and financial reports to the General Assembly meetings.
3. Carry out the resolutions, passed by the General Assembly.
4. Call General Assembly meetings.

The Board has the powers to:

1. Act on behalf of the KARAT COALITION in accordance with responsibility given by the General Assembly.
2. Empower the Executive Director.
3. Delegate members to represent KARAT COALITION.
4. Manage the assets of KARAT COALITION in accordance with respective decisions of the General Assembly.
5. Decide the schedule of KARAT COALITION’s major activities.
6. Overview the policies and programs of KARAT COALITION.
7. Adopt official position statements on behalf of KARAT COALITION.
8. Authorize in a written form the Executive Director and members of KARAT COALITION to make official position statements on behalf of KARAT COALITION.
9. Approve and recommend KARAT COALITION’s projects.
10. Hire expertise and appoint advisory committee or individual experts when required.
11. Accept and exclude regular and individual members.
12. Mediate in the case of disputes arising between the members over the matters connected with the activities of KARAT COALITION.
13. Establish the amount of membership fee.
14. Establish, monitor, evaluate the work of executive bodies and define their terms of references.
15. Hire, fire, assess the work of the Executive Director.
16. Decide about KARAT COALITION joining other organisations.
17. Recommend individual members.
18. Co-opt new Board members in case of resignation or mortis causa. However, the number of co-opted members may not exceed 1/3 of the number of members elected.

§ 20

The Executive Director is the executive body of KARAT COALITION, employed by the Board on the basis of a public tender giving the priority to persons already involved in KARAT COALITION activities. The Executive Director is responsible for the practical implementation of the decision of the Board. The Executive Director is supported by the
Secretariat, the central administrative unit of KARAT COALITION.
1. Based on the Board’s decisions the Executive Director represents KARAT COALITION and acts of its behalf in the day-to-day affairs, i.e. signs official and financial documents, contracts and the like; initiates meetings and speaks on behalf of KARAT COALITION to the media, donors and the public.
2. The Executive Director is responsible for the performance and the number of paid staff, working with the Secretariat.
3. The Executive Director is to report in written to the Board twice a year.

 

Section V
Branches of KARAT COALITION

§ 21

A branch or local section of KARAT COALITION can be established in any country of the Region upon decision of the Board, approved by the General Assembly. Branches or local sections shall be financially independent.

 

Section VI
Assets of KARAT COALITION

§ 22

The assets of KARAT COALITION are comprised of real estate, movables and funds.
Funds are comprised of:
1. Subsidies, private donations, legacies and endowments.
2. Income from the statutory and other lucrative activities in accordance with the law.
3. Income from public donations and offerings.
4. Income from government donations.

 

Section VII
Amendments to Statute and dissolution of KARAT COALITION

§ 23

Resolutions of amendments to the Statute or of dissolution of KARAT COALITION are passed by the General Assembly with 2/3 of votes either face-to-face or by electronic mail. The General Assembly decides about the disposal of the assets of KARAT COALITION. It also calls the Liquidation Commission, formed ad hoc in accordance with the decision of the General Assembly.