Cheshire Federation organises ‘Meres and Mosses’ walk for climate change Week of Action
To mark the Climate Coalition’s ‘Speak Up Week of Action’, WIs in Cheshire Federation embarked on local nature walks to learn about the threat posed by climate change. From 1-9 July WI members hosted events, inviting their newly elected MPs to let them know how much they care about climate change.
Runcorn WI organised a gathering at Abbots Moss where Katie, an expert from Cheshire Wildlife Trust, gave a fascinating talk. Abbots Moss is a ‘quaking’ moss, which means it is a large raft of woven sphagnum moss floating on a five-metre deep kettle hole full of water, peat and more water. The children were delighted to discover if they jumped up and down, the ground bounced under everyone’s feet! Standing still for long was not an option.
Meanwhile, two intrepid ladies from Fulshaw WI, Pauline Handley and Jean Hill, undertook a photographic study of their local moss, Lindow Moss.
Other activities in the federation included a group walk around Wynbubury Moss, home to a variety of wildflowers and dragonflies, and a family group visit to Burton Mere Wetlands. The wetlands are an important natural habitat as birds from the Mediterranean travel north to nest there.
Speak Up Week of Action 1st to 9th July 2017
The Week of Action has been planned to allow the members of the Climate Coalition to demonstrate to our leaders in both politics and industry that people DO care, that we LOVE our planet and want them to take action to tackle climate change. If people are talking about climate change, they are going to believe we care.
More about the Week of Action
Sue Bentley is the NFWI Climate Ambassador for Cheshire.
Link to the Climate Change area of the NFWI website for Cheshire Climate Change
Post of information Click on this link to read more about the week of action you can get involved in
Georgina, William and Sue
PALs (click here to find out more about PALs)
CFWI PUBLIC AFFAIRS and PALs Link
If you would like to ‘Show the Love’ in February here are some materials you might find useful
PALS meeting with William Roberts for a talk about our climate
Please find details below of an exciting new and free surplus food scheme. If you are interested in getting involved you can register here
FareShare FoodCloud is a new scheme which helps charities and community groups like you to access the free, unsold, surplus food from a day’s sales at your local Tesco supermarket. Using the simple mobile technology FoodCloud, we have already helped 60 UK charity groups to access over 20 tonnes of fresh, good quality, free food. We want you to benefit too.
How it works?
1. You nominate two or more evenings per week you are available to collect surplus food from your local Tesco Extra or Superstore.
2. On those evenings at 7:30pm, you will be notified via text that your donation is available for collection.
3. The fresh surplus food will be packaged and available for collection from the store from 8:30pm.
4. We are happy to say, this will always be a free of charge service to our charity partners.
currently redistributes surplus food to over 2,000 charities like you, together serving over 19 million meals last year. We want to work with you on this new project to make an even bigger difference to vulnerable people across the UK.
If you want to benefit from additional fresh surplus food please register here.
(NB this is a choice for individuals not a WI activity)
Public Affairs at The Cheshire Show
Amid the colourful display of bunting and banners in the W.I. marquee the Public Affairs team plotted the progress of women and the W.I. over the last hundred years. Many visitors were very interested to see the range of resolutions displayed including those which reflected the W.I.’s concern over matters such as women’s health and equal pay. It may have taken some years for funding to become available or to effect a change in the law but these issues have made a significant difference to our lives today. The “Hands On” section intrigued many people who, from a selection of pictures were asked to “Name The Decade” or Guess The Date “ of the invention of a selection of items such as the bikini, the mobile phone or the Mars bar. We thoroughly enjoyed our centenary marquee and look forward to next year.
Public Affairs Display
click above to download the booklet
Public Affairs and Campaigns
Influential and well regarded, the WI has a very strong campaigning tradition. Soon after its beginnings the National Federation of WIs (NFWI) presented and voted upon its first resolution: school dinners (1926). Resolutions are researched and proposed by individual members or WIs, with the final resolution(s) chosen by a panel taken from the general membership. Prior to voting (one member one vote) members will have discussed the merits or otherwise of the resolution(s). If passed, each resolution then has a mandate and so becomes a campaign, with each campaign being followed through for several years.
Previous and current campaigns include equal pay (1942), keeping Britain tidy (1954), a ban on smoking in public places (1964), breast screening (1975), HIV and Aids (1986) and more recently the threat of hazardous chemicals in everyday products (2006), care not custody (2008), an SOS for honey bees (2009), more midwives (2012) and organ donation (2013).
In addition, the WI is engaged in initiatives that usually involve other charities and public bodies, which are followed through for several years. Recent initiatives include Women Reaching Women and Women and Climate Change.
Countryfile filming at Handbridge WI
Public Affairs Display Boards
The Public Affairs Sub-Committee of the CFWI
Cheshire Federation has an active Public Affairs sub-committee. In addition to ensuring that members are fully briefed on national resolutions it has its own resolution and campaign process. The national resolution, SOS for honey bees was originally a Cheshire resolution and other recent CFWI resolutions include banning Chinese lanterns, working fire alarms and the rights of grandparents
Membership of the sub-committee is drawn from members of the WIs within the CFWI who have a particular interest in public affairs and campaigning. Committee members represent the WI on a variety of County committees covering, amongst others, agricultural, environmental and social issues. In addition, the committee arranges regular meetings with specialist speakers. These have included topics as varied as nanotechnology, the role of women in the 21st Century, care of the elderly, drug and sleep research and mathematics.
If you have a particular interest in current and public affairs please contact the Chair of the Public Affairs Sub-Committee, Georgina Denny. firstname.lastname@example.org
The CFWI PALs Network
Cheshire Federation is unique in having a network of members who represent WIs at meetings and then cascade information to the members of their own WI, thus keeping members up-to-date and informed about topics of particular current interest. Although PALs receive individual invitations to meetings, all meetings arranged by CFWI may be attended by any WI member. A small charge is made for each meeting, with PALs paying slightly less.
Although we have a large PAL network it is incomplete, so if your WI has no PAL and you would like to be one please contact Georgina Denny as above.
Spring PAL meeting – Wednesday March 18th 2015
“Shale Gas and Fracking: Information not Emotion”
The purpose of the meeting was to have a speaker on Shale Gas and Fracking who could provide us with the information required for us to make informed views and opinions on this current and controversial topic and Professor Kevin Taylor, a Geoscientist from the University of Manchester School of Earth, Atmospheric and Environmental Science did exactly that. On Wednesday March 18th over 150 PALS and members gathered to hear him.
His research is deeply rooted in geology so we came away with a sound knowledge of the type of rock in which the shale gas is captured and where the rock is found, how the gas got there, and the process of extracting it. His presentation was full of interesting facts and figures but one of the significant facts is that all we currently know about the practicalities of Shale Gas extraction (Fracking) comes from the experiences of the USA where the geology is different from that of the UK so great care should be taken when what is happening in the USA is translated to what would happen here. The difference in geology is a very significant factor.
He referred us to the website www.decc.gov.uk - the Department of Energy and Climate Change where there is much additional information.