Guide to getting involved in YRes

3. Setting up a new regional YRes group

West Mids YresOver half of the Resolution regions now have a YRes group and new groups are being set up all the time.

If there isn't a YRes group in your region and you are interested in setting one up, this section provides you with some guidance and tips about how to get started.

Starting up your own group or working with a YRes group that needs a boost is a great opportunity to really make YRes something relevant to the junior practitioners in your region.

You might already have people in mind to form a committee, or you may have no idea where to start!

There’s a bit of work to be done to get set up and we hope that this guidance will help you do that as quickly as possible.

Registering your interest

The first step is to register your interest with Resolution – let Sue Gunn (Director of Membership Support) know that you are looking to set up a new YRes group. She may know of others in your region that have also registered their interest and can put you in touch.

Recruiting committee members

Talk to your Resolution Regional Committee about setting up a YRes group. Do the people sitting on the Resolution Regional Committee have junior colleagues who may be interested in getting involved? Why not get their contact details and arrange a get together?

Remember that YRes comes under the umbrella of your Regional Committee. If you don’t have a Regional Committee but want to start one, contact Sue Gunn to discuss this further.

If you have to spread the net a bit wider, you can use the template letter in this guide. Find out who your local firms are and start sending letters and emails. Don’t forget that YRes isn’t just for full Resolution members but affiliates too. Many of the junior practitioners in your region may be paralegals or trainees as well as NQ’s and junior lawyers.

Depending on the size of region, we’d suggest that ideally you will want to start with 4/5 committee members. As the group grows, so will your need for a bigger committee.

Working with your Resolution regional committee

If you do have a regional committee, it is important that you work with them as much as possible. We have set out more detail about this below, but remember that your regional committee can provide you with a wealth of experience, support, contacts and information.

Where to start?

Once you have identified members in your region who are interested in creating a YRes committee, you should arrange to meet to discuss this further. Depending on the number of people interested and the size of your region, you may want to choose a venue convenient to as many attending as possible. This could be a local café or bar. You may also consider taking it in turns to host the meetings at your various offices. Many firms will allow you the use of your meeting rooms to hold a meeting (but check with your supervisor first).

Your meeting can take place at any time that is convenient to you and those interested, whether this is during the working day, early morning, lunchtime or evenings.

What to discuss

Your first meeting will be to introduce yourselves and to decide how you want your committee to progress and how you see YRes developing in your region.

You should decide who will take on different roles within the committee. As a guide, some roles are identified below. Remember that you may not need all of these roles, and you may decide to add roles as the committee grows. You may share the roles, or take on a couple of roles if you have a small committee, but you will likely find that there will be some crossover and that you will all help out with the different tasks at hand.

You may decide that introductions and assigning roles is enough for your first meeting, in which case the next step will be to simply arrange your next meeting, where you can start discussing ideas for your committee’s first event.

As your committee develops you will also find that you need to discuss other matters affecting your region, from updates fed through your regional committee and also nationally (whether from the National YRes Committee or national communications). You will discuss your training needs and perhaps organise educational events that are tailored to what your committee believes will be helpful to other junior practitioners in your area.

Your first event

All of the regional YRes groups hold regular events, both educational and social. If you are struggling for inspiration, perhaps contact another region to find out what events they have held which have been successful. Members of the National YRes Committee will also be more than happy to discuss event ideas with you.

There is no requirement for there to be a specific number of events, it will be up to your committee as to what is manageable in your area. Some areas are more active than others and this will depend upon the needs of the region, how active you main Regional Committee is, what other events are on offer to family practitioners in your region and of course the time that your committee can give to arranging events.

If you are able to plan ahead and agree to dates to aim for, assign and minute who will arrange what, your first event can easily be organised. A social, informal welcome drinks is always a good way to introduce yourselves and your committee to the local family law community and spread the word about YRes in your region.

Start-up costs and finances

It will be important to liaise with the Regional Committee’s Treasurer to establish how to best finance any initial events. The goal for regional YRes committees is not to generate huge profits at events, but to ensure that costs are covered and events are accessible to the YRes network. That being said, if any profits are generated, those funds will be accounted for separately to the main regional committee’s funds (even if they remain within the same physical bank account) and can be used to fund the cost of future events.

At the outset, the regional committee might agree to provide with YRes committee either with a ‘float’ or ‘loan’, or might give the committee some start up funds. You can discuss ideas with Sue Gunn at Resolution who may be able to help.

If you are hosting a launch event, local firms/chambers/accountants/IFAs/businesses might be prepared to sponsor or fund some of your costs and it’s a great way of launching your profile.

Your regional committee may also be able to help with finances.

Please also see the section on YRes Finances.