Need recommendations for a membership platform

Help me Wendell, you're my only hope.

My mother was approached by a local social club to oversee the development of a new membership website to replace their single-page Wordpress mess. Times are hard and mom really wants to find a full time job to make up for the lack of demand for web design locally. Getting passed the torch ssh key to continue the project I would love some recommendations from this community for my course of action.

I am familiar with php and getting around Wordpress but not implementing the features that they are looking for, which are the following:

  • Invite only membership that requires admin approval and/or sponsorship to get user permissions.
  • Easy admin dashboards for the delightful older women that will be managing the users in the future.
  • Members only directly listings for all current members, club bylaws and amendments.
  • A payment method for the membership costs to join the club.

The implementation of Discourse on the Tek forums and many other sites make it seem like a dream for getting the user permissions where they want them to be but the forum and discussion aspect is something that the club isn't interested in since their Facebook page has much more activity.

My experience with membership sites and listing members and info from SQL while keeping it secure is NONE. Getting their CC#s and contact info out of a *.csv on a ftp server with no auth is definitely a start.

No work and very little research has started on my behalf so far, but I wanted to ask all you talented devs how you would handle this.

There are many options available, but the line about CC# and contact info onto FTP, that sounds rather risky to me. Have a good read up on that aspect. There are a lot of great solutions available for running a forum, but the second you involve any form of payment solution, the level of responsibility that you need to take on, is significantly increased.

Sounds like an interesting project nevertheless, and all the very best with it :)