Tips for Inspiring the WI Members in your Group

Photo Courtesy
Photo Courtesy


• 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!

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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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.”


Peace Garden Scholarship 2014

International Peace GardensFour young women were awarded a scholarship to spend the last week of June at the International Peace Garden on the Manitoba and North Dakota border. Their visit was part of an exciting new initiative between The Federated Women’s Institutes of Canada (FWIC) and the Peace Gardens. The delegates chosen* to attend were:

Holly Bus from Ontario, Hayley Campbell from Quebec, Sonja Mueller from Manitoba, and Bethany Saunders from Prince Edward Island who was unfortunately unable to attend.

 FWIC Ann Mandziuk (Manitoba) with Peace Garden scholarship recipients at the Gardens.
FWIC Ann Mandziuk (Manitoba) with Peace Garden scholarship recipients.

In order to be eligible for the scholarship, young women must meet the following criteria:

  • Between 17-19 years of age as of January 1
  • Demonstrate an interest in tourism, retail, horticulture, photography, creative writing, and music
  • Have community and volunteer experience

As part of the application, a candidate writes an essay describing her interests and detailing how the experience would benefit her.

This scholarship program is designed as an opportunity for a young women from each province across Canada to participate in a one week educational program which includes

  • The history of the International Peace Garden
  • Horticulture
  • Retail
  • Public Relations: engaging with the visitors to the gardens
  • Photography
  • Wildlife
Delegates to the 2014 International Peace Garden spruce up the Maple Picnic Area, a park that has been sponsored by the Manitoba WI and FWIC since 1951.
Delegates to the 2014 International Peace Garden spruce up the Maple Picnic Area, a park that has been sponsored by the Manitoba WI and FWIC since 1951.


planting annuals

In her recent correspondence with WI members, Marie Kenny reported that the young women enjoyed the week-long experience under the direction of the CEO, Doug Hevenor.

Doug was so wonderful! He kept us busy and made us feel comfortable! He was a great tour guide and definitely made the gardens show their true beauty.

Holly Bus, Ontario

Sonja Mueller of Manitoba, recalls her most memorable moments as

those spent with the other girls laughing and sharing stories. After a week at the garden I really realized how great an organization WI is; we can come together and teach each other from our own experiences.

Besides getting to know one another as Canadians, the young women also had the chance to meet international music students who were there to participate in the International Music Camp. Emily Jones, an Exchange Student from Australia staying in Manitoba, was also thrilled about her week at the Peace Garden and will have wonderful memories to share with the World President, Ruth Shanks, when she returns home.

At the end of her stay, each delegate prepared and submitted a report in a media of her choice to her provincial Women’s Institute office. She will also make at least one presentation to a Women’s Institute group or conference. You can view  Part 1 and Part 2 of a video presentation available on YouTube. More images and reports are found on this site, prepared by Emily Jones,

Everyone should experience the International Peace Garden at least once in their lifetime

Hayley Campbell, Quebec

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*Due to scheduling conflicts or funding issues, WI’s from New Brunswick, British Columbia, Alberta, Saskatchewan, Newfoundland, and Nova Scotia were unable to send a delegate.

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About WI

Women’s Institute is a local, provincial, national and international organization that promotes women, families and communities. Our goal is to empower women to make a difference.

About FWIC

The idea to form a national group was first considered in 1912. In 1914, however, when the war began the idea was abandoned. At the war’s end, Miss Mary MacIsaac, Superintendent of Alberta Women’s Institute, revived the idea. She realized the importance of organizing the rural women of Canada so they might speak as one voice for needed reforms, and the value of co-ordinating provincial groups for a more consistent organization. In February 1919, representatives of the provinces met in Winnipeg, Manitoba, to form the Federated Women’s Institutes of Canada.