Article 1. Name
The organisation shall be known as the World Federation for NeuroRehabilitation (WFNR).
Article 2. A Non-Profit Organisation
The WFNR is not organised for profit and no part of the net earnings of the WFNR shall inure to the benefit of any private individual or member. The WFNR shall remain independent.
Article 3. Address of the WFNR
The address of the WFNR is the address of its business office.
Article 4. Objectives and Purpose
The objective of the WFNR shall be:
A. To advance the development and improve the quality of neurological rehabilitation across the world.
B. To stimulate collaboration between clinicians and others with an interest in neurological rehabilitation.
C. To facilitate exchange of knowledge and scientific research between clinicians and others with an interest in neurological rehabilitation.
The WFNR will achieve these objectives by:
- Producing a regular newsletter in order to stimulate communication between those with an interest in neurological rehabilitation.
- Arranging courses and training programmes in neurological rehabilitation.
- Developing and distributing guidelines for best clinical practice in the field of neurological rehabilitation.
- Organising a world congress in neurological rehabilitation to be held approximately every three years.
- Sponsoring two official journals -
- Neurorehabilitation and Neural Repair
- Pediatric Rehabilitation
- Any other activity that will promote the development of neurological rehabilitation on a worldwide basis.
Article 5. Membership
A. The WFNR shall be open to all professionals with an interest in neurological rehabilitation irrespective of sex, religion, disability, philosophical or political opinions or nationality.
B. There shall be two categories of membership -
- Ordinary membership
- Extraordinary membership
i. Ordinary Membership
This category contains two sub-categories of ordinary membership.
a. Personal Membership
Membership of the WFNR shall be open to any professional with an interest in the development of neurological rehabilitation. Membership shall be defined by an entry in the mailing list of the WFNR Update. Personal membership carries voting rights at the General Assembly at each world congress or at an Extraordinary General Assembly that may be called from time to time. There will be a fee for personal membership and the level of the fee shall be determined by the Management Committee.
b. National Society Membership
Any national society with an interest in neurological rehabilitation shall be eligible for membership in this category. The membership status of national societies shall be decided by the Management Committee. There will be fee for a national society to be affiliated to the WFNR and the fee level shall be determined by the Management Committee. The President (or nominated representative) of each national society formally affiliated to the WFNR shall be a voting member of the WFNR Management Committee.
The members of a national society affiliated to the WFNR will automatically be members of the WFNR with full voting rights. Existence of a national society of neurological rehabilitation in a particular country does not require personal members of the WFNR to be a member of that national society. Individuals could be personal members of the WFNR whilst not being members of their own national society. Such individuals will still carry full voting rights.
ii. Extraordinary Membership
This category is also split into two sub-categories.
a. Honorary Membership
Honorary members shall be elected from amongst those who, in the opinion of the Management Committee of the WFNR, have made an exceptional contribution to the global development of neurological rehabilitation. Honorary members shall be proposed by at least two members of the Management Committee and shall be elected by a two thirds majority vote of the Management Committee. Honorary membership shall be formally conferred at a world congress.
b. Corporate Membership
Any organisation, company or foundation that has an interest in promoting the development of neurological rehabilitation shall be eligible for corporate membership at the discretion of the Management Committee. Corporate members shall be elected by a majority vote of the Management Committee. There shall be an annual fee for corporate membership and the fee level shall be determined from time to time by the Management Committee. Corporate membership does not carry voting rights.
C. Membership will terminate at death or resignation. The Management Committee shall reserve the right to expel any member of the WFNR. Expulsion shall be decided by a two thirds majority vote of the Management Committee.
Article 6. Management Committee
A. The activities of the WFNR shall be governed by the Management Committee. Members of the Management Committee, each of whom shall have equal voting rights, shall be as follows:
i. Elected Members
These individuals will be elected by the general membership with voting rights at a world congress:
President (and Past-President) - Elected for one term of office but may stand for a second.
Secretary General - Elected for two terms of office.
Treasurer - Elected for two terms of office.
Six General Members - Elected for one term of office but may stand for a second.
The elected members will be proposed and seconded by at least two WFNR members. Nominations must be received by the Executive Director at least one month prior to a General Assembly.
ii. Ex-officio Members
iii. The following shall be members of the Management Committee, with equal voting rights, but their positions will not be elected by the general membership of the WFNR:
Presidents (or nominated representatives) of National Neurological Rehabilitation Societies that are formally affiliated with the WFNR.
Editor of Neurorehabilitation and Neural Repair
Editor of Pediatric Rehabilitation
Editor of the WFNR Update newsletter.
Chairperson of Organising Committee for next World Congress.
Chairperson of Organising Committee of previous World Congress.
Chairs of ad hoc committees, standing committees and special interest groups who are not otherwise members of the Management Committee.
Regional Vice Presidents
Executive Director (non-voting)
B. The Management Committee, as a minimum, must meet during each World Congress. All major decisions of the WFNR shall be made by simple majority of the Management Committee, unless a two-thirds majority is required according to the Constitution. In the event of a tied vote the President shall have the casting vote. The minimum attending members, either in person or by telephone, so that the Management Committee is quorate, shall be eight voting members.
C. The officers and members of the Management Committee shall be elected by voting members in a General Assembly held at each world congress.
D. The day to day running of the WFNR will be a small executive group that shall consist of the President, President-Elect, Past President, Secretary General and Treasurer with the support of the employed Executive Director. This group shall meet as required to ensure the proper governance of the WFNR.
Article 7. Officers
A. The officers of the WFNR are the President, Past-President, President-Elect, Secretary General and Treasurer.
B. Each officer shall serve for at least one term of office. A term of office is deemed to be the period of time between each world congress (see Article 6). Thus, terms of office shall normally be three years but may vary according to the date of the congresses. The outgoing President shall remain on the Management Committee as Past-President until the incumbent President completes his/her term of office. When a President takes office at a world congress then at the same time there will be an election for the President-Elect. The President-Elect will be a member of the Management Committee until such time as the President demits office when the President-Elect will be come President. Thus the term of office of the President-Elect will be a period of time between one or two world congresses depending on the length of office of the incumbent President.
C. Any vacancy amongst the elected members of the Management Committee during a term of office shall be filled by an individual appointed by the President on a majority vote of the remaining members of the Management Committee. If the President demits office before completion of the term of office then the Management Committee shall elect a President from amongst its own members on a simple majority vote. That President shall remain until the next world congress at which point s/he shall be eligible for re-election. This interim period shall not count as a term of office.
Article 8. Committees
A. The WFNR shall have two Standing Committees -
i. Editorial Board of WFNR Update
The Editorial Board of the WFNR Update shall be chaired by the Editor of the newsletter. The Editor may co-opt any number of appropriate individuals to the Editorial Board from amongst the membership of the WFNR (either ordinary or extraordinary). The Editor shall be responsible for production, at least twice a year, of the WFNR Update newsletter. The Editor shall be responsible, with the other members of the Management Committee, for raising sponsorship for the production, printing and distribution costs of the WFNR Update. The Editor shall be responsible for the editorial content of the newsletter. The Editorial Board shall be independent of all other organisations but shall remain accountable to the Management Committee.
ii. World Congress Committee
The World Congress Committee shall be chaired by the President. Membership shall include the chairperson of the local organising committee of the next world congress and the Past-President. The President may co-opt other members of Management Committee or any other member of the WFNR (either ordinary or extraordinary) as deemed necessary. The World Congress Committee may deem it appropriate to have separate sub-committees - an organising sub-committee and a scientific sub-committee. The chair and membership of these sub-committees shall be at the discretion of the World Congress Committee.
Responsibility of the World Congress Committee shall be to organise a world congress in neurological rehabilitation that will be held approximately every three years. Attempts shall be made to rotate the venue of the congress around the different continents. The world congress shall not return to the same continent at consecutive congresses. This Committee shall be responsible for development of the scientific programme for the congress and for locating appropriate sponsorship for the congress. However, it is likely that the detailed accrual of sponsorship and details of local organisation shall be delegated to the organising sub-committee.
B. The Management Committee shall reserve the right to establish other standing committees or sub-committees and ad hoc committees as appropriate. The Management Committee shall determine the members of such committees. At least one Management Committee member shall be a member of each standing committee and sub-committee and such member shall be responsible for liaison between that committee and the Management Committee. If a Management Committee member is not chair of any sub-committee then the chair shall be an ex-officio member of the Management Committee during his/her term of office as Chair of that sub-committee.
Article 9. Management and Duties of Officers
A. The day-to-day management of the WFNR shall normally be delegated by the Management Committee to the President supported by the Past-President, President-Elect, Secretary General and Treasurer. The President is empowered to decide on all day-to-day matters. The President shall act in the best interests of the WFNR at all times. Important decisions, as determined by the President, shall be discussed by the Management Committee. Open communication is required by the President to other Management Committee members on a regular basis, usually by telephone, email or land mail. The President shall be accountable for his/her decisions to the Management Committee and to the membership as a whole. The Executive Director will be accountable directly to the President.
B. The Management Committee can be supported by an Executive Director. The Executive Director will support the President and other members of the Management Committee and be responsible for the day to day organisational matters and general smooth running of the WFNR. He/she will be responsible for the administrative support to the Management Committee and standing committees and other sub-committees as required.
C. The Secretary General will be responsible for the day to day organisation of the WFNR in support of the President. The office of Secretary General will be responsible for collection of membership fees and for keeping, collating and distributing the appropriate membership database. The Secretary General will need close liaison with the Executive Director as well as with the Treasurer and other officers of the WFNR.
D. The Past-President shall continue to serve on the Management Committee until the new President demits office. S/he will act in support of the President and take on such duties as delegated by the President.
E. The Treasurer shall be responsible for the WFNR finances and be accountable to the Management Committee. The Treasurer shall be responsible for maintaining accurate financial records and present a financial statement to the Management Committee at each Management Committee meeting and to the General Assembly at each world congress. S/he shall submit financial accounts to an annual independent audit. S/he will need to liaise closely with the Executive Director and the Secretary General and the other elected members of the WFNR Management Committee.
F. The Regional Vice Presidents will be elected for one term of office but may be re-elected. It is likely that the geographical coverage will be subdivided into the following regions -
- Sub-Saharan Africa
- Pan-Arabic Region (Middle East and North Africa)
- South Asia
- South-East Asia
- Australia, New Zealand and Oceania
- Central America and Caribbean
- Western Europe
- Eastern Europe and Central Asia
- North America
- South America
G. These appointments will be at the discretion of the Management Committee. The role of the Regional Vice President will be to encourage the objectives and purpose of the WFNR in their own geographical area. The Regional Vice Presidents will have discretion to establish a regional congress of the WFNR in their own geographical area or in other areas in conjunction with other Regional Vice Presidents. The Regional Vice Presidents will be accountable for their actions to the President on a day-to-day basis and through the President to the Management Committee and membership at large.
H. There will be six General Members of the Management Committee who may be asked to undertake specific tasks on the request of the President or the Management Committee. They may be members of any of the standing committees or other sub-committees of the Management Committee.
The Management Committee may appoint 'Ambassadors' for the WFNR. These individuals will support the Regional Vice President in carrying out their duties or support other officers of the WFNR as appropriate.
Article 10. Finance
A. The fiscal year of the WFNR shall commence on 1 January and end on 31 December each year. The Treasurer shall be responsible to the Management Committee and to the membership as a whole for the finances of the organisation. The Management Committee shall determine an appropriate bank account and appropriate cheque signatories and, through the Treasurer, shall make all arrangements for the prudent and open conduct of the financial affairs of the WFNR. The accounts shall be presented to the Management Committee on an annual basis and, through the Update or at each congress, shall be presented to the membership as a whole on an annual basis. The accounts shall be audited.
B. The WFNR shall be, as far as possible, financed from surplus income derived from the congresses and from ordinary and extraordinary membership dues and from any donations received from private persons or industry or from any publications.
Article 11. General Assembly
At each world congress there shall be a General Assembly of members. This will provide an opportunity for the Management Committee to review progress and decisions and actions taken over the time since the preceding General Assembly. New officers and members of the Management Committee shall be elected at each General Assembly by the membership. Voting shall be a simple majority of the voting membership. Individuals will need to be proposed and seconded by at least two voting members, with at least one month notice before the General Assembly.
Article 12. Special Interest Groups
The Management Committee has the power to appoint Special Interest Groups. The chair of each Special Interest Group will be appointed by the Management Committee. The chair of the Special
Interest Group may be co-opted onto the Management Committee as appropriate. Each Special Interest Group will co-opt members of the WFNR and others onto the Special Interest Group. The Special Interest Group will promote the development of their specific interest within the general aims of the WFNR. The specific terms of reference of each group will be formulated by each individual group subject to the approval of the Management Committee.
Article 13. Amendments
Amendments to this Constitution may be proposed by any member of the Management Committee. Amendments shall be submitted to the Secretary General at least three months prior to a Management Committee meeting or three months prior to a world congress and will be posted on the WFNR website. Any amendment of the Constitution shall require a two-thirds majority of the Management Committee.
Article 14. Dissolution
Voluntary dissolution of the WFNR shall only be decided by a two-thirds majority vote of the Management Committee supported by a two-thirds majority vote of the voting membership at a General Assembly. If necessary, an Extraordinary General Assembly may be called with three months notice being given to members by the Secretary General. Any assets of the organisation shall in the event of dissolution be donated to a non-profit organisation supporting neurological rehabilitation on a worldwide basis. These organisations shall be decided by a majority vote of the Management Committee.
Michael P Barnes
Klaus von Wild