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Wednesday 21 April 2010
What do you think? Your chance to let us know

The following article was published in the programme for the Tamworth game and explains the background to the planned survey of fans and how you can be involved. The survey will be one of the main topics at the Special General Meeting at the club on Thursday 22 April.

Dons Trust board member Nicole Hammond explains more about consensus voting and how you and your opinions are wanted at the ground floor of a new project.

A few weeks ago on this programme page I wrote about the latest development on the members’ survey: that we have decided to commission the New Economics Foundation (NEF) to engage the membership in a process called consensus voting, which is intended to arrive at a position about the future of our club that almost everyone is happy with.

What we need to do first, before we can carry out the voting itself, is to involve you, the fans, to make sure that all views are represented – not just the views that may seem the most widely held because they get more “airtime”. This is where we need your help.

We want to assemble a group of people, each one acting as a champion for a different viewpoint. Should we aim to stay in Kingston indefinitely? Should all our efforts be concentrated on returning to Wimbledon? What exactly constitutes “Wimbledon”? Would anywhere in Merton do? How much of a priority is getting back into the Football League? Should we always remain trust-owned? How much of our limited resources should we be expending on community projects, or on the other teams that comprise AFC Wimbledon?

You may well have strong views on some of these positions – I know I certainly do – and feel that some of them don’t belong on any Dons agenda. However, if any views are dismissed too soon, some sections of the fanbase may feel alienated and the process of reaching a consensus won’t succeed. Alternatively, you may have less strong views on some of the issues, and feel that a balanced position would be fine. These are familiar topics, and they have been discussed at length on various forums, but the time is coming where we need to reach a consensus and state it as a policy of the club and the Dons Trust.

The Dons Trust SGM is this Thursday, 22 April. The agenda includes a discussion on whether we should participate in the 2018 World Cup bid if a certain club in Buckinghamshire remain part of it. Terry Brown will be there to answer questions about the team, and a representative of the NEF will be there to describe how consensus voting works. Hopefully you will be able to attend.

Please consider joining the group that will be setting up the consensus voting with NEF. (Just to be clear: this isn’t the group that will actually be deciding the policies; that stage will come later and will involve everyone.) You don’t need to be a confident public speaker, or even have the strongest of views on the issues facing the club, just as long as you care about the future of AFC Wimbledon. And if you know somebody with a particular viewpoint who doesn’t tend to buy the programme or read the official website, tell them to get in touch. Of course, if we have a very large number of people wanting to take part, we will need to choose between those who share similar standpoints, but the intention is that all views will be fairly represented.

If you would like to get involved, please get in touch with me at Nicole Hammond, briefly outlining how you see the future of the club, or by post c/o the club address.