The VSA currently has 5 types of membership; Introductory Members, Associate Members, Full Members, Life Members and Foundation Members. Prospective members are encouraged to take up an Introductory Membership which will allow them to explore their personal interests over a 12months period (or until the current year’s AGM, whichever is earlier). The Introductory Membership is offered at an attractive discount which includes insurance as well as a monthly newsletter, the quarterly VSA magazine (Nargun) and the quarterly ASF magazine (Caves Australia).
Recognised recreation groups are also encouraged to join VSA as they can become official affiliated groups of the VSA and participate in co-organised activities.
Of these 5 types of memberships, 3 are available for a prospective individual to apply for:
Introductory Members shall be persons over the age of 18 years approved in the following manner:
- Download a form from the website (see below page for forms) and
- Submit the form with the appropriate fee to your trip leader on your first cave trip.
- The term of membership is limited to a maximum of twelve (12) calendar months, commencing on any day of the month, as specified on the application form, after which the person may apply for Associate or Full Membership.
- The person may apply and be approved for an unlimited number of terms of an introductory membership.
- Come to a VSA general meeting which is held on the first Wednesday of every month. Check out the website calendar for dates and details.
- Contact us to let us know you are coming so we can set you up with a buddy caver to get you started.
Once an application for an introductory membership has been accepted by the Committee, it is usual practice to announce the acceptance at the next general meeting. This membership enables anyone to participate in VSA caving trips and events for 3 months without going through the full formalities and cost of a normal full-year Associate membership. It includes the mandatory ASF insurance (https://caves.org.au/administration/insurance)
Associate Members shall be natural persons over the age of 18 years nominated and approved in the following manner.
- Be proposed and seconded by two full members who are familiar with the person and his/her abilities.
Once an application for Associate Membership is accepted by the Committee, it is usual practice to announce the acceptance at the next general meeting. This membership is similar to the introductory membership except that it lasts for one year and allows you to nominate for the committee.
Full Members shall :
- Have attained the age of 18 years, and
- Have considerable caving experience from a number of caves and different areas developed over a period of at least 12 months, as an
- Associate or Introductory Member of the VSA or as a Full Member of any other approved speleological body and to have participated in VSA activities,
- Be conversant with the ASF Code of Ethics (http://caves.org.au/codes-and-standards/finish/7-codes-andstandards/7-code-of-ethics) and ASF Safety Codes (http://caves.org.au/codes-and-standards/finish/7-codesand-standards/15-safety-guidelines)
- Show a responsible and safe attitude towards caving
- Be able to competently use and maintain their personal equipment and have developed proficiency in a range of caving skills.
In special cases, the VSA Committee may recommend Full Membership for a person not satisfying all of these requirements. Note that Rule 3A (b) in VSA Statement of Purposes and Rules requires that a majority of Full Members present at a General Meeting approve a person for Full Membership.
Membership renewals are due in September. The following table shows the VSA and ASF (Insurance) cost breakdown.
|VSA Component ($)
|ASF Component ($)
|Total Fee ($)
|VSA Life Member
|VSA Article Subscriber
Membership for Associate and Full members shall deemed to be lapsed if the relevant membership fee amount remains in arrears for six months from the due date for payment, unless the Committee sees fit to waive this provision due to perceived special circumstances. Introductory and Associate membership lapse automatically at the end of the 12 months period or AGM, whichever is earlier, for which it applies.