CHAIRMAN’S MESSAGE – 19 JANUARY 2021
Hello, I hope that you are you are all keeping well and that you are finding plenty to do during the lockdown. I know that some ladies I have spoken to are finding this lockdown more difficult than the first one. Mainly because of the dismal weather and not being able to relax by gardening. However, for those of you lucky enough to have a greenhouse it will not be long now before its time to plant the early seeds.
I have been receiving some queries about the examination of WI accounts for the year ending 31 March 2021. This examination will be going ahead as and when restrictions allow, and WIs will be receiving the name of their Examiner in good time. This examination is still necessary whether or not your WI has been active during the lockdowns.
In response to some other questions..........
Unfortunately, at the moment, with WI House being closed, we are unable to accept donations of ink cartridges or milk bottle tops, but we hope to be able to do so again when our staff return to work in the building. At the moment staff visits are very brief, just to collect any mail and to ensure that all is well.
The Hampshire News is still being published online and, at the time of writing, I do not have a date for any alteration to this. The low cost of the magazine relies heavily on the advertising and at the moment firms are reluctant to advertise goods and services they are not able to supply. The result of this is that our publishers have been forced to furlough their printing staff although other staff are working to try to get the adverts. Sadly, it is a question of ‘watch this space’. The Board and myself are very aware that not everyone can access the on-line version, so please pass on any snippets which you think your members will find especially interesting.
Karen has been, and still is, very busy organising the AGM/ Spring Council Meeting and she has asked me to include the following piece for you:
It will soon be time to host our Spring Council Meeting & AGM.
This year we have a great afternoon planned in addition to the usual AGM with the presentation of the Annual Report and Accounts by the Treasurer, there will be updates from the Chairman, a talk and presentation on Climate Change and our guest Speaker is a truly inspirational lady, Amanda Owen, the Yorkshire Shepherdess.
We will hear about her busy but rewarding life and her amazing family, not to be missed!
If you watched our online meeting in September 2020, you or your Treasurer will be sent a link to this meeting automatically, as you have rolled over the balance paid last year to this event. You do not need to apply again.
In most cases, WIs ordered tickets for members and we do not have names or emails to send the link directly to each individual, so Treasurers please send the link to only those who watched in September.
All cancellation refunds have now been credited to your WI so please do not contact us in this regard.
New applications only
For those of you who did not join us in September you can apply to watch this event, tickets £10.00.
An application form will be sent out shortly, please remember to write your email address clearly so that we can send the link directly to you to view the event.
Please support your Federation and join us on Tuesday 23 March for a fun and informative meeting.
As Karen mentions, the date to save is the 23 March and I look forward to speaking to you all then.
Until next time
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The WI is a democratic, social and educational charity and gives members the opportunity to build new skills, make new friends and be inspired. We encourage members to take part in a wide variety of activities and to campaign on issues that matter to them and their Communities. WIs meet once a month.
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.