Pickles and Fish – Fundraising for Women in India

In her fall newsletter, Sheila Needham, the Canadian Area President of the Associate Country Women of the World (ACWW) sent along details of two fundraising efforts that might be of interest to your WI. The following two projects are the top two choices of the members at the Canada Area Conference that was held in Camrose, Alberta, in June this year. Both are designed to provide financial support to women’s groups in India.

The Grace Trust Project No. 0960. ACWW Grant £3,337

Grace Trust has formed 50 women’s Self Help Groups among disadvantaged rural Dalit women in Sedapatti block, Madurai district, Tamil Nadu. Their plan with this project is to provide a revolving fund to 50 women, so that they can carry out income generating activities, having first participated in skill training. The women will be trained in making pickles, papadums or candles, as well as in quality control, micro credit and savings, and record keeping.

Most of the products will be sold in local villages, as it is known that there is a high demand for these items locally. The women will repay part of the loan each month with 1% interest, and in this way loans will be made to further women Self Help Group members.

The beneficiaries will use the income to buy food for their families and to pay for their children’s schooling, and any other family necessities.


The Organization for Community Development (O.C.D) Project No. 0961 ACWW Grant £4,702.

The aim of this project is to train 60 women in fish processing (drying and packaging). These women are among the most marginalized of the fisher folk community, being either widows or having husbands who are invalid or alcoholic. Because they lack resources, they have been forced to borrow money at exorbitant rates of interest from moneylenders in order to purchase fish to sell, and they are then often not able to make a profit owing to fluctuating prices and the perishable nature of fresh fish. They would sell processed fish alongside fresh fish and this would mean that they do not have to sell at a loss, and would have something to sell during the ‘off-season’ (fish breeding season), and when the catch is small owing to stormy weather.

The Federation of Women Head Load Fish Vendors will assist with beneficiary selection, training, micro credit disbursement and monitoring repayments. The training will consist of: processing fish of different varieties according to season and availability (equipment for storing and transporting unsold fish will be provided for the trainees); EDP (Entrepreneurship Development Training); leadership development; micro credit; maintaining accounts.

The Canadian Area has pledged $7,500.00 CAD or £4,123 pounds to be split between the two projects – £1,337 for project (0960 Pickles) and £2,786 (0961 Fish)

For a .pdf copy of this information and details on how to submit and direct your donations, please click here.

Margaret Christensen's ideas

Margaret suggests that the details of the projects be printed on card stock and put up near a collection jar or a fish bowl at any luncheon table that is at a W.I. meeting or other event.


Tips for Inspiring the WI Members in your Group

Photo Courtesy http://londonmasalaandchips.blogspot.ca
Photo Courtesy http://londonmasalaandchips.blogspot.ca


• Make it a practice to thank your WI members for their efforts
• Encourage, motivate and show enthusiasm for projects and programs
• Plan some fun programs, share jokes and stories
• Keep things simple – do not deal with too many issues at one time
• Find out the issues that the members are interested in and invite speakers on the topics
• Write a resolution about a “burning” issue
• Brainstorm to come up with new ideas or new ways to present old topics.
• Seek feedback from your members by having comments and questions at the end of your meetings
• Solicit program ideas from the membership
• Make sure no member is carrying more responsibilities than she can handle or desire
• Frequently check with each member so that discontent can be known and changes made
• Use the talents of your members
• If certain practices are no longer working in your group, change the way things are being done
• Be flexible – try different ways of meeting, working and planning

W.I. Our goal is to Inspire Women to make a difference! Let’s have fun and make that happen.

Can you add to the list? Join in, please,  and comment below!

#IAmWI – The Highlight Reel

If you were near a social media outlet on Wednesday October 1, you may have spotted some of the smiling faces in the gallery below. Jo Beal of the Cambridge WI in the UK launched the #IAmWI campaign in order to promote the current image of women’s institutes around the world. Take a look and I think you’ll agree, the face of WI is vibrant and bright.

Addie’s Apples

If people would only realize the value of fruit in its natural state, much of the time devoted to the preparation of pies, puddings, etc., would be saved. All uncooked fruit should be thoroughly ripe and served fresh and cold. Sometimes fruit is more easily digested when the woody fibre has been softened by cooking than when in its natural state, therefore a few simple recipes for cooking fruit are given.”

Adelaide Hunter Hoodless, author

Pare, core and quarter 6 or 8 tart apples.

Make a syrup with 1/2 cup of sugar, 1/2 cup of water, and a little grated lemon peel.

When boiling, add the apples and cook carefully till they are just tender, but not broken.

Remove them carefully, boil the syrup down a little and pour it over the apples.

(For serving with roast goose, etc., cook the apples in a little water, mash until smooth, add sugar to taste.)

Coddled Apples.
Pare tart apples of uniform size; remove the cores without breaking the apples.

Stand them in the bottom of a granite kettle, sprinkle thickly with sugar, cover the bottom of the kettle with boiling water, cover closely and allow the apples to steam on the back part of the stove till tender.

Lift carefully without breaking, pour the syrup over them and stand away to cool (delicious served with whipped cream).


Reprinted from





President School of Domestic Science, Hamilton.
This Book may be used as a Text-Book in any High or Public School, if so ordered by
a resolution of the Trustees.


Entered according to Act of the Parliament of Canada, in the year one thousand eight hundred and ninety-eight, by The Copp, Clark Company, Limited, Toronto, Ontario, in the Office of the Minister of Agriculture.

***   ***   ***

About Addie – Adelaide Hunter Hoodless
Adelaide was born on February 27, 1857 and raised on this isolated farm in Canada West.
Her public life began after she became a wife and mother. It was instigated by a tragic event: her fourth child died of what was then called a ‘stomach complaint’. Seemingly blaming herself for this tragedy, Adelaide’s campaign sought to raise the level of education for girls and to put supports in place for women so that they might safeguard their families.
She is credited as a co-founder of the Women’s Institute, the Young Women’s Christian Association (YWCA), the National Council of Women and the Victorian Order of Nurses (VON), and a major force behind the formation of three faculties of Household Science. She achieved national recognition in her twenty years of public life. She died in 1910, the year Laurier stated, “The twentieth century belongs to Canada.” Her work had ensured that Laurier’s words applied to women and families.

Double Layer Pumpkin Cheesecake

This Recipe was included in October’s news bulletin from the FWIC head office. Kate reports

“I’ve made this before and it’s probably the best dessert in my repertoire!

Double Layer Pumpkin Cheesecake

Photos courtesy Allrecipes.com

2 (8 ounce) packages cream cheese,
1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 eggs
1 (9 inch) prepared graham cracker crust
1/2 cup pumpkin purée
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 pinch ground cloves
1 pinch ground nutmeg
1/2 cup frozen whipped topping, thawed
1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C).
2. In a large bowl, combine cream cheese, sugar and vanilla. Beat until smooth. Blend in eggs one at a time. Remove 1 cup of batter and spread into bottom of crust; set aside.
3. Add pumpkin, cinnamon, cloves and nutmeg to the remaining batter and stir gently until well blended. Carefully spread over the batter in the crust.
4. Bake in preheated oven for 35 to 40 minutes, or until center is almost set. Allow to cool, then refrigerate for 3 hours or overnight. Cover with whipped topping before serving.



An Afternoon Tea to Celebrate Kuntsford Women’s Institute 1864-2014

On Saturday September 6 2014, Kuntsford Women’s Institute hosted a 1864-2014 celebration which included pictorials displays, presentations, music, and an afternoon tea. Joan Smallman presented flowers to Empress McDowell on her 95th Birthday, Jacquie Leard recognized Silver Dennis for 75 years service in WI. Greetings were extended by Hon. Robert Henderson, Marie Kenny, FWIC President and. Jacquie Leard, PEIWI. Congratulations to Fairley Yeo, chair and Orlo Smallman, President Knutsfort WI for a wonderful celebration !


It was a wonderful celebration and certainly reflected the dedication and commitment of so many WI volunteers to community building.

Your displays, memorabilia, and pictorial displays celebrated your rich history.

I congratulate you!!

The past is your lesson
The present is your gift.
The future is your motivation.

Blessings always

Marie Kenny, FWIC President

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2014 Summer Fete at Adelaide Hunter Hoodless Homestead

Summer Fete 2014 was held August 10th, 2014 at the Adelaide Hunter Hoodless Homestead. The weather cooperated and we’re glad it did.

This gallery is a compilation of photos taken by Homestead staff and members of the press who came to record the fun and festivities. People of all ages took part in the garden party, a tour through the homestead, games, and music; they had their wee face painted and they petted the farm animals, including Harry the Goat! As well, there was a chance to interact with local vendors & demonstrators.

Susan Gamble of Sun Media spoke with volunteer co-ordinator Kate Belair about The Homestead on Blue Lake Road and the Summer Fete.

Today is our third annual event and we’re just trying to bring the community together. We don’t charge the vendors and we don’t charge visitors. We just hope people will learn about the place, our programs and Adelaide.


Cottage Cheese Batter Bread


Taken from an old Breads 4-H manual in Manitoba.

½ small onion
1 package instant yeast
2 ⅓ cup flour
1 tbsp margarine
1 tbsp dill
1 cup creamed cottage cheese (room temperature)
1 teaspoon salt
1 egg (room temperature)
¼ teaspoon baking soda
¼ cup warm water
2 tbsp sugar
Use the metal ‘S’ blade in your food processor. Place onion in the processor and chop to fine.
Add flour, spice, salt, baking soda, sugar and yeast. Pulse 6-8 times.
Add margarine and process 10 seconds, add cottage cheese and egg and process 10 seconds.
With motor running add warm water. Knead 10 seconds.
Place cover on feed tube and allow to sit in a warm location for 15-20 minutes.
Turn machine on for 5 seconds.
Proceed to shape the loaf.
Put into a 1 ½ litre (8 inch casserole)*
Let rise to double 15 minutes
Bake at 350º F. For 40-50 minutes.
Remove from dish and cool on rack.

*The author of the recipe writes, “I use my soufflé dish with straight sides. Using a dish that slopes to the bottom will possibly give you a loaf that is not cooked in the centre.”