There is widespread interest in our developing network and many people keen to come on board with projects the fit their skills and passion. There has been a general agreement to hold the development of the projects off until we have settled on our new structure. Those who are interested in being part of this process, please reach out! If you are more interested in being part of projects as they develop – be patient, let us know what you are keen to contribute to, and they will start as soon as we have a structure in place to support them. You can, of course, be interested in both!
We have a number of key decisions to make. Currently the HVNSA is part of Sarah K Reece’s private business. We are looking at incorporating and making it a not for profit. We are also considering the relationship between the HVNSA and the Dissociative Initiative (DI) – a sister network founded on the same principles, but for people who experience dissociation, multiplicity, or amnesia.
One of the challenges facing us is the potential conflict between organisational heirachy and structure, and the friendship and community based values of the Hearing Voices Movement. Another is the vulnerability of funding and the need to sustain the structure through times of little or no financial support.
We have three basic options when it comes to incorporating:
- Incorporate either the DI or the HVNSA, and run the other as a project of it
- Incorporate only the HVNSA and retain the DI as a network supported by Sarah’s business
- Incorporate a body distinct from both, committed to the principles of the HVM such as teaming ‘experts by training’ and ‘experts by experience’ together, encouraging diverse understandings of experiences and so on (for more please see our page About the Hearing Voices Movement Approach) but applying them broadly to any experiences, not just voices. (To read the HVN values articulated for the DI, please see our page Our Values) This body could then run both the DI and HVN as distinct but connected networks – and possibly expand to include other experiences down the track.
We are still seeking advice as to our legal requirements with regards to Board structure and responsibilities, one suggestion to help the organisation as a whole function despite funding gaps and so on has been to create a very small, permanent board of committed (pun intended!) people who are able to support the projects and record and preserve the work accomplished in them through the website and printed materials and so on. Others with a passion for the networks but perhaps less free time or more challenging health or life situations could be linked in as advisers to the board or as managers or team members of the specific projects they have a passion for. An upside of this approach is that it is very stable, a downside is that it can create a closed clique.
We are keenly exploring different models in an attempt to create an organic, efficient, community structure and we welcome your input!