Sahana Project Council
The Sahana Project Council (SPC) is a decision-making body that allocates SSF funding to eligible projects. It is composed of representatives of projects that advance the mission and goals of the SSF. These projects can be internally focused (ex. Communications & Operations Project which manages the website, nonprofit compliance, etc) and they can be externally focused (ex. Disaster Response Project.) Projects are admitted to the SPC by a vote of SPC members. Once accepted, projects are invited to select one or more of its members to represent the project at the regular SPC meetings where decisions are made pertaining to member funding and SPC operations. Peer support is also encouraged.
The SPC is chartered, funded and overseen by the SSF Board. By participating, projects are required to follow the SPC Project Guidelines documented below.
This is a living document maintained by the Sahana Project Council (SPC) with the intention of being approved by the SSF Board of Directors. Once approved, additional changes to this document must be agreed upon by the SPC and approved by the SSF Board to be in effect.
Joining the SPC
Leaving the SPC
Projects must meet the following criteria to qualify to join the SPC:
- Advance the mission of the SSF
- Utilize open source technologies, particularly SSF technology
- Led by active members of the Sahana community
- Address issues of relief, recovery and/or resilience
- Publicly aligns itself with the SSF.
- Non-commercial project that produces outcomes that benefit the free/libre/open-source community
- Has a unique scope that makes incorporating itself into another SPC project not-optimal
- Complies with all SPC Processes
The SPC can mobilize a number of resources to support member projects, including:
- Endorsement: SSF announces its support for the project and publishes it on the site.
- Promotion: SSF uses its communication channels (blog, social media, etc) to spread news and information about projects.
- Volunteers & In-kind Donations: SSF can solicit its supporters (community members, volunteer groups, donors).
- Fiscal Sponsorship and Back Office: As a 501.c.3 nonprofit, the SSF can leverage its legal status to benefit projects by enabling them to receive tax-deductible donations, access nonprofit-only grant and project opportunities, manage bookkeeping, accounting and legal, maintain compliances, and operate under US-regulated nonprofit. Some of these services might also require approval from the SSF Board of Directors.
- Funding: The SPC can allocate a budget to high priority projects.
The Operations project offers templates and will assist projects in meeting these requirements.
All SPC projects are required to maintain specific sets of information about their projects, which includes:
- Representatives to SPC.
- Activity log related to initial goals and milestones.
- Expenses tracking spreadsheet. (template)
- If the project is receiving stipends, they must also provide:
- A list of project team members who are receiving stipends
- Monthly timesheets for each member of the project receiving stipends.
Projects willing to meet our requirements are invited to apply to join the SPC.
Joining the SPC
Projects can access the SSF resources above by joining and participating in the SPC.
- Projects can apply to join the spokescouncil by filling out an application. Applications are automatically sent out to the entire SPC membership.
- If the project meets the SPC project criteria, the applicant will be invited to present at the next available presentation time slot. Project scheduling will happen on a first come, first serve basis.
- Projects are invited to give a 3-5 minute presentation about themselves to the SPC. These presentations may be recorded and published to the site. SPC members are invited to ask the project applicant(s) questions for 7-10 minutes.
- After presentation, SPC members deliberate about accepting the project in private. One member must sponsor the project. Once a project has a sponsor, it must receive over 80% approval from the membership to be accepted into the SPC. This session should take no longer than 7 minutes.
- When a decision is reached, the applicant(s) will be invited back to the call to hear the verdict. Whether the project is accepted or rejected, its applicants can attend the open portions of the SPC meeting but can’t participate as an SPC member.
- If the project is accepted, it will be asked to provide additional documentation (see below). This documentation will be added to the public website and private SSF system.
- If the project is rejected, the spokes council will provide feedback explaining the reasoning behind this decision.
Projects applying to the SPC must provide the following information in their application:
- Project Name
- Public Tagline
- Public Description
- Public Contact Information
- Representatives Members
- SPC Sponsor
- Budget URL
- Resource URL
Applying for Funding
Once accepted, projects are invited to apply for funds from the SPC by providing the information below.
- Amount Requested
- Point Person
- Other Sources of Support
Leaving the SPC
Projects can be removed from the SPC for the following reasons:
- Persistent non-compliance with SPC documentation requirements
- Not sending a representative to an SPC meeting three times in a row (minimum 6 weeks)
- Voted out by membership
SPC meetings are regular gatherings of SPC members. They take place every month at a regular time publicized through the SSF calendar via online video/voice conference.
Projects are required to maintain a list of people who can represent them in the SPC. Anyone on that list (but only one) can represent the project at an SPC meeting.
The purpose of meetings is to do the following:
- accept/reject project applications and remove inactive/non-compliant projects
- evaluate budget requests and make decisions about funding member projects
- update this governance document
- provide peer support to peer projects
The basic agenda structure for meetings is:
- Project report backs
- Adding/removing projects
- Open discussion, collaboration and peer support
The following is a list of notes about process and procedure:
- Projects that miss three meetings in a row will automatically have their funding/access to network resources suspended until they are in compliance.
- Consensus is defined as 80% agreement
- Quorum is defined as 2/3rd of member projects
- Any and all documented representatives of an SPC project can join the SPC meetings, participate in conversation and collaborate on SPC documents.
- Each SPC project can choose one person to vote on behalf of their project at an SPC decision making meeting.
- The CEO/President of the SSF can represent and vote on behalf of two SPC projects at an SPC decision making meeting, but this is discouraged.
Most up to date information project information here.