CHAIRMAN’S MESSAGE – 25 NOVEMBER 2020
Hello, I hope you are all keeping well and using this time of the second lockdown positively. I wonder how many of us are using the time to write our Christmas cards. I have been thinking about it but haven’t actually written any yet!
As usual, behind the scenes our staff, Board Members and Advisers are all still working hard. Virtual meetings are being held and proposals drawn up to plan a way forward for the Federation after this lockdown is over. The difficulty being that no one is really able to project what is going to happen next so we will need to have several options ready.
The events team are doing a wonderful job and sourcing some marvellous speakers – please do join us at one of the meetings planned for December. Information and application forms can be found on the first page of the Hampshire WI website by clicking on the ‘events’ tab. They are also planning an exciting programme for 2021 which, sadly, it seems that, at least for the moment, will still have to be for virtual events. We are so very aware that this excludes some of our members, so could I ask you that if you know of a member who has a tablet or computer, but is not confident enough to join in Zoom meetings, that you or another member of your WI gives them a phone call to see if you can help them gain access, or if restrictions allow, why not invite them to join you so that you can watch together.
Have you received your copy of WI Life yet? You will see that beginning on page 22, this year’s Resolutions are listed together with sources of information for each one. I am sure that the Secretary of your WI will be in touch soon to let you know how she wishes you to return your votes to her. She will need these in time to record all of those from your WI members to send into the Federation before the 18 January. As usual, there are some vital issues to be considered this year, and every vote counts.
(A message to Secretaries – information on how to report your voting numbers back to us should already be with you.)
Just as I was finishing this message, I received an email from NFWI about proposed constitutional changes. Very shortly the consultation paperwork about this will be sent out to all WIs. This again has to be returned to the Federation by the middle of January. There is quite a lot of paperwork to read and discuss but it is important that every member has opportunity to decide on these proposals, so we look forward to hearing from you.
Until next time
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Have you thought about joining the WI but are never in the right place at the right time? Then the Virtual Hampshire WI is for you - join in our meetings from your own home or where ever you are. All welcome, no previous WI experience need!
Join the Virtual Hampshire WI on Friday 27th November at 8pm for a Zoom cheese, wine (or any beverage of your choice) and chat to find out find more about how you can be part of the largest women's voluntary organisation in the UK without ever setting foot in a WI hall.
If you would like to find out more and join us 27th November please email email@example.com and we will send you a link to our Zoom meeting.
On behalf of the NFWI Board of Trustees, it is with great sadness that we announce the proposal to close Denman permanently.
HAMPSHIRE FEDERATION TREASURER, GAIL PUSSARD
Dear Fellow Members
Whilst I think we all suspected there would be a restriction in the South because of the Covid-19 virus, possibly by moving from tier 1 to tier 2. The sudden full lockdown was a shock. Especially as the Federation was moving to have our furloughed staff back (albeit on reduced hours) and to reopen WI House. So WI House is closed again and staff are working from home. However, someone does go into WI House on a regular basis to check on the house and also to process the post (bank any cheques and record any event applications etc).
I am very conscious of the need to get the refunds out to everyone who have paid for any event which has been cancelled due to Covid-19. It would really help to speed up the process if we did not have to write cheques – it is very time consuming to write the cheque and envelope; then we need to get the cheques to two signatures to sign; and finally we need to post them.
A quicker method is for the Federation to pay any refund by Bank Transfer. Although this needs two Trustees to authorise, this is done electronically and there is no requirement to travel to pass pieces of paper. I know we have heard the comment “we don’t do internet banking”. However, the Federation paying you by bank transfer does not require either you as an individual or your WI to be doing internet banking.
So, if you are seeking a refund for any event cancelled, please would you email me the following information:
If tickets were purchased by your WI, the Federation may not know exactly which members have paid. Therefore, we will be crediting your WI. If you are the WI Treasurer and your WI hasn’t provided the above information, please would you send me your WI’s bank details.
I can promise you that for individuals, the bank details will not be retained and only used to refund any money due to you.
I look forward to hearing from you.
Following current Government guidelines WI House is currently closed. Please contact us by email (Click here for link to email addresses)
URGENT MESSAGE TO ALL WIs
As the festive season approaches, I know that some WIs are already making plans to meet for lunches etc.
Sadly, I have to remind you that the NFWI have instructed that, in line with the Government guidelines, which specifically mention the WI, WI meetings and get togethers cannot take place.
Therefore bookings should not be made in the name of your WI.
Should you wish to make arrangements as individuals this will be entirely dependent on the restrictions being adhered to by your chosen venue, and WI funds cannot be used to meet the cost.
Hopefully the situation will improve in 2021.
Gina Ireland MBE