President Pauline Weiland welcomed all present and opened the Bloomingdale Women’s Institute meeting with the Ode and the Mary Stewart Collect. This first meeting for 2022 was held at the Bloomingdale United Church meeting room on Thursday 10 February at 2 p.m.
Membership fees will remain the same as previous years. A thank you card was received from the District Women’s Institute for the donation to the “Scholarship Fund” on behalf of one of our long time member’s Irene Weber who had passed away.
The ladies worked on quilts – some lap top and others a little larger. The lap top quilts will be donated to Community Living in Elmira and the larger ones to the Grand River Hospital Children Ward.
On February 19th the Women’s Institute Organization celebrate 125 years of supporting and inspiring women. It is one of the longest standing sisterhoods in the world, founded in Stoney Creek, Ontario on February 19, 1897. Today they have branches worldwide. It was started to provide a social connection, educational source and community service opportunity for women. Local branches meet monthly, often with a guest speaker or group activity. Meetings include social time and a short business session to plan ongoing community involvement, support, and advocacy. Women are looking for a break! The regular meeting is time they can take for themselves to connect with friends and get to know new people. Women of every age and stage gather to support each other and their communities.
Over the years, the Women’s Institute has been at the forefront of multiple causes. The original goal was to teach women how to keep their families healthy and well fed and these educational gatherings also offered a much-needed social connection. To raise money in those early years they hosted community dances and card parties to support their community work, then later the war effort. Most recently they are working on educational campaigns such as gender, Indigeneity, and Black history, and have undertaken campaigns to eradicate Lyme Disease and advocate for victims of human trafficking.
The Women’s Institute are members of the Associated Country Women of the World (ACWW), which holds consultative status with the United Nations Economic and Social Council.
New branches are being formed by women who are interested in supporting and inspiring other women in their communities. Online options also are happening. If you’d like to start or find a branch near you, please go to fwio.on.ca or contact your local WI Branch.
The next meeting will be held on Thursday March 10th at 2 p.m. in the Bloomingdale United Church meeting room.