400 members packed into the hall of Sandbach Girls School on Saturday 10 March for the Annual Council Meeting for a day of meeting fellow members, business and speakers.
Wendy Morris from Fulshaw WI shares her report of the meeting:
I attended the Spring Annual Council Meeting at Sandbach and I am still feeling the impact from it. My motto is that “I should learn something new every day” and Saturday could keep me going for weeks!
Jean Harding, our Chair, opened up the proceedings with her thanks to all involved in helping to run the Federation. She also thanked the members for supporting the myriad of activities available to them. Each member of the Board introduced themselves and gave a quick round up of events.
I was under the misapprehension that the morning speaker would be talking about hearing aids! I have no idea why but James Johnson from Independent Age was not only interesting but gave us some ideas for volunteering. His talk was based around the small national charity who believes in keeping older people’s lives as independent as possible through advice and support. This tied very nicely into our Resolution to combat loneliness in our communities. We can help support by being a visitor, telephone friend or even help on their support lines. James had a lovely caring manner about him and their website is worth looking at to hear what impact they have made. www.indendentage.org
After having a lunch break and catching up with ladies from across the county we were excited to hear from Chris Lubbe. He was a body guard to Nelson Mandela for ten years so he was undoubtedly going to be dropping the odd famous name or two but he was much more than that. He went from one experience to another telling us the personal impact of apartheid and the distressing stories of his personal journey including his family, education, peaceful demonstrations resulting in imprisonment and torture and the journey to forgiveness. So many interesting, thought provoking and emotional tales resulted in a standing ovation for Chris. I’m sure he touched many people that day.
The day ended with a rousing rendition of the national anthem with over 400 strong voices. I really enjoy attending both Federation and National events – it really makes you feel that you are a part of something much bigger than your Institute. If you haven’t been I would really recommend going along and experiencing something very special.
Diane Coulton stepped down as Federation Treasurer after 10 years. Jean thanked her for all her hard work and also thanked Judith Kennedy who has decided not to stand again for the Board of Trustees.
We thank them both for all their hard work for the Federation over the years
Jean presented a number of certificates to WIs in the Federation which were given by the NFWI:
The WIs to receive certificates were:
Boothesmere celebrating 50 years
Hartford celebrating 75 years
Woolston & District celebrating 75 years, and
Ludworth & Mellor celebrating 100 years
The morning speaker was James Johnson from Independent Age
Here are some of the photographs from a most enjoyable day
Members have been commenting on the meeting on Facebook and twitter
Chris took photos of us from the stage