Hot Topics October 2016

Fiona welcomed 68 members, 4 new members and 2 guests. Before starting the Christmas Craft evening, the following notices were read out.

Linden Lodge Family Centre Appeal: Fiona mentioned the forthcoming Swing Dancing event in support of the Family Centre Appeal. The dance takes place at 7.30 on Friday, 11th November at Apogee Centre, Linden Lodge School, 61 Princes Way, SW19 6JB – tickets are £15 and include dinner.

Suggestion Box: Fiona reminded members of our suggestion box which is next to noticeboard. So if you have any suggestions pop them into the box.

SFWI Annual Meeting: Eileen gave us a quick review of the Surry Federation Autumn meeting in Dorking on Monday which a few of our members attended. She said all the speeches were very good. Adrian Bell, CEO of the Kent, Surrey and Sussex Air Ambulance Service gave an interesting talk of how they operate and that they are an independent charitable healthcare provider working with the Ambulance Service. He said they are not part of the NHS and are funded almost entirely by voluntary donations. St. George’s Hospital has a helipad and Kingston Hospital is planned to have one soon. Sally Kettle gave a very inspiring talk of how she has rowed the Atlantic twice and how, at the age of 26 and having left home at 16, she rowed with her mother which really cemented the mother and daughter relationship. Anne Diamond, was the main speaker of the day. Although well known for her television and radio career, Anne has been very powerful in the cot death awareness campaign. She said that a national study in New Zealand had found that the babies who were dying of cot death were those lying on their tummies and mothers were advised to put babies on their back to sleep. Despite this breakthrough the Department of Health wanted more data and decided not to tell parents about the findings. So to get this information across Anne campaigned tirelessly to influence people and eventually, Government listened and the Back to Sleep Campaign was formed.

SFWI Trustees’ Meeting: Fiona mentioned that she and Lys recently went to a Surrey Federation Trustees Meeting at the Worcester Park WI. The impression that came across is that they are keen to update and improve the Surrey Federation and said more information will now be appearing on the website, twitter and facebook. They are also keen to hear from members and happy to arrange more local events if there are halls available in the area. On this matter, several of the London WI’s voiced their opinion that a lot of events still happen in Surrey despite more members living in London. For more information about events etc., the SFWI’s webpage is and their facebook page is

Streatham WI: Angela from Streatham WI arranged a get together of other London WI’s to share information etc., and was attended by 5 of our members It does seem that technology is the way forward and Becky, from the soon to be running Tooting WI, is very knowledgeable and willing to help with Twitter etc. A member from Wandsworth WI has been successful in having her campaign against Female Genital Mutilation accepted for nomination by the NFWI. One disturbing point she did mention is that although FGM has been illegal in this country for 40 years, there have been only 2 prosecutions. So this will be a campaign to look out for next year. It was mentioned that, as there are now more members in the London area, it would good if a London Federation of WI’s could be formed but this would take a lot of organising and probably not possible in the foreseeable future.
The Wimbledon Society: Veronica asked for a volunteer to become Chairman of The Wimbledon Society. They are looking for a volunteer who lives in or near Wimbledon and is an experienced chairperson, team player and able to run a friendly and knowledgeable committee.

The 300 Club is a lottery which raises funds for the SFWI. There is an annual subscription of £15, for 10months there are two £25 prizes and twice a year prizes of £500, £100 and £50. If any member would like to be part of the 300 Club or for more information please contact SFWI. BUT no later than Friday, 4th November.

Remembrance Sunday: Members are invited to join the Remembrance Sunday Parade on Sunday, 13th November at 10.00 at Belvedere Grove, Wimbledon Village, SW19 when we will be laying a joint, handmade wreath with SW19 WI.

2017 Charity: We will need to be thinking about our new charity for next year and Fiona mentioned that it would be rather nice to nominate St. Raphael’s in support of their care for Joanna in her last weeks but if members have other nominations for our charity of the year, please let one of the committee members know. Please note, the charity has to be a local one.

Christmas Dinner: There are only a few remaining places for Christmas Dinner which, this year, is being held at the Taste Restaurant, South Thames College, Morden, on Tuesday, 6th December, at 6.30 for 7.00. Please contact Gillian if you would like a place.

Dates for your diary:
Sunday, 13th November, Remembrance Sunday Parade
Next meeting, Monday, 21st November, AGM
Tuesday, 6th December, Christmas Dinner