The WI persisted in working towards providing educational opportunities for its members and established Denman College after World War II and now we hear that some members think this is a drain on WI finances and should be closed. Another snub to worthy achievement and based on misconceptions as none of our subscriptions is used to support the college. Our current membership certainly lacks the drive of the early stalwarts: imagine, large WIs closing because they cannot get officers. What’s the point of being on a committee if you will not take a turn at being an officer?
So if we don’t appreciate having the vote and we don’t want to undertake responsibility as an officer at any level, what do we want? It still comes through that women join to be a member of a group within the community, to enjoy the company of other women and to learn about the world we live in; to learn crafts and to help others worse off than themselves wherever they live and to have the recognition of being able to speak up about matters of social importance. Isn’t that what the WI is about? Isn’t that what we need, a framework with the power to achieve what the individual cannot achieve on her own?
The resolution selection process is entering its final stage and two of the topics featured in the media recently. The first case of a father being sued for his part in allowing his daughter to undergo FGM and the continuing fight by the young Royals for improved care for those suffering from mental illnesses.
At least 4 members of the local WI have been to Denman College during February to listen to Diane Atkinson talk about The Remarkable Lives of the Suffragettes. They all appreciated the presentation, enjoyed being in that lovely house and looking out over the gardens and meeting members from all over the country over a super meal. Many visitors new to Denman were vowing to come back and went home armed with the latest brochure of courses. It is the jewel in our crown: for Heaven’s sake let’s hang on to it!
The local WI’s interest groups have met during February to read, to sew, to eat and to walk. Soon they will be making poppies in various media for Remembrance Day and attending the events planned both by BFWI and by our Group Convener. A full schedule of things at home and with friends in the wider community.