The parents of St. Mary’s (Erskineville) Primary School established SMOOSH in 2003 as an Out Of School Hours (OOSH) Child Care service for the families of St Mary’s when their council facility was no longer able to offer child care services, and SMOOSH formally commenced in 2004.
The Founding Parents established the new service as a special type of legal entity called an Incorporated Association. The existence and operation of Incorporated Associations is made (legally) possible under the NSW Associations Incorporation Act. This act is (now) largely administered by the NSW Department of Fair Trading and it is that government department that enforces, in the first instance, compliance with the provisions of the NSW Associations Incorporation Act.
The St Mary’s (Erskineville) Out of Hours School-Care Inc (SMOOSH) association was first registered with the (now) NSW Department of Fair Trading in 2003 under the provisions of the NSW Associations Incorporation Act.
The objects of Incorporation for the SMOOSH Association are as follows:
“To provide quality out of school hours child care services to students of St. Mary’s (Erskineville) Primary School”.
Even though we are a Not-for-Profit organisation, the association has an Australian Business Number (ABN) for various reasons including to facilitate government processing of Child Care Subsidy and for GST liability purposes.
It is important to recognise that while SMOOSH and St. Mary’s Erskineville Primary School both serve the same community, SMOOSH is a completely separate legal entity to St. Mary’s Erskineville Primary School that exists to serve the members of the Incorporated Association.
As is required under the NSW Associations Incorporation Act the day-to-day running of SMOOSH is governed by a Committee made up of members initially elected at an Annual General Meeting each year.
The Committee operates in a similar way to the Board of Directors of a Public Company and the members are like the shareholders of that company. The Committee raises capital, acquires assets, hires staff, sets objectives, directs achievement of desired outcomes, and administers the financial affairs of the association. Just like the directors of a Public Company, the members of the Committee of the Association are responsible for the good governance of the association’s activities in operating consistently with the objectives of the association.