BCA Focus Group Committee

Birmingham Commonwealth Association


The Basis of Understanding for Focus Group Committee Membership – Nov 2016


The Corporate structure comprises a ‘not for profit’ limited Company with its own Articles of Association. The Directors of the corporate structure are two of the 3 Focus Group Chairs, the Chairman of the BCA, Mr Tony Shergill and Mr Paul Sabapathy CVO CBE. The BCA ,as a corporate entity, is also a branch of the Royal Commonwealth Society.


Below this ‘corporate’ structure, sits three Focus groups; Trade and Business, Education and Communities. These focus groups (FG’s) are run by FG ‘Committees’. Committees comprise people, representing organisations or business who seek to promote the Commonwealth in the context of the adopted remit of their respective group as well as promoting Birmingham/Greater Birmingham/the West Midlands. In this process, it would not be unreasonable for the business /organisation the FG Committee member represents to benefit from this engagement, but only on the basis of the intellectual and operational contribution/input that member makes to the BCA.


Members are recommended to appoint an ‘alternate’ to represent them at meetings should the principle representative be unavailable. Members should brief ‘alternates’ appropriately.


The FG may establish committees for specific projects.


As a rule, FG’s will meet no less than four times in any 12 month period. Should a member fail to attend in full for two consecutive meetings, he/she will cease to be a member unless the Board of Directors of the Birmingham Commonwealth Association in their total discretion asks them to remain.


FG members:

  • Are to be committed to the objectives of their FG and to the broader objectives of the BCA as a whole. To this end, FG membership entails both providing operational assistance and/or hands-on help from time to time as well as to draw upon the wisdom, skills and networking ability of members.
  • Should not claim to represent the FG or the BCA per se unless duly authorised to do so by the BCA. However, FG members are encouraged to promote the work/objectives/outcomes of the BCA and its FG’s.
  • Will be expected to attend BCA corporate events/ their own FG events and encourage others within their network to do so.
  • Should give their full support to their FG Chairman in the achievement of the FG‘s decided outcomes and make a positive personal contribution to the achievement of those outcomes.
  • Should liaise with their FG colleagues, Birmingham City Council’s International team and any other relevant stakeholders as and when required, and follow-up on agreed actions in a timely and effective fashion.
  • Members should ensure that they keep all relevant parties informed of developments and/or issues impacting upon the successful execution of actions.


FG members must be aware that their FG is part of a larger body and have regard to the views of that larger body, including the other FG’s and the corporate side, in decisions and actions.

A BCA Strategic Partner
BCA Ambassador
Councillor Diane Donaldson – B’ham City Council
A BCA Strategic Partner
BCA Ambassador
Councillor Mohammed Aikhlaq MBE – B’ham City Council