The WI (womens institute) getting younger new members

(7 Posts)
WiltshireGirl Sat 16-Jan-16 17:09:30

I hope you didn't mind me emailing you, please move this if this is in the wrong thread.

I am seriously considering joining my local WI in Salisbury, Wiltshire. The WI is a brilliant organisation, I'm also the youngest member which brings me to why I have started this discussion.

The ladies in the group I am with are wonderful people (they probably have to be to put up with someone like me) and I have made many new friends. A lot of the women in the group are in their 60's upwards, the oldest being 90.

I would seriously like to encourage younger women to join, and show them that you don't have to be 'elderly' to join (as my cousin resolutely thinks and won't change his mind) and I would like some advice on this?

I spoke to another woman who's group had closed in her village because they had mostly all 'died' off, this would be a crying shame if the WI eventually died out. Once it's gone, it can never come back and it's not until you realise it's not there anymore how wonderful it was.

I know when the WI first began, it was a different world, but we have a totally different generation of women today. I do admit some WI groups need to come into the digital age, it's not all Jam and Jeruselem. some older women might feel intimidated by younger people, but if nothing is done you might as well kiss it goodbye anyway.

I'll still stick with my local group but sometimes I feel out of place, especially when they do stand up to sing Jerusalem. I stand up with all the others, but I am worried that some members might think me odd and a bit rude if I don't.

Thanks for reading my post, have a good day all smile

sillyoldfool Sat 16-Jan-16 18:09:02

Good for you. Where I am, instead of joining the existing WI some young(ish) women started a new branch, I thought it was a real shame, the generations joining together was what attracted me to the WI.

TheCountessofFitzdotterel Sat 16-Jan-16 18:17:43

Thank you for this post op, it's reminding me I must look out for mine! They meet 5 mins away from my house at a time when dh is home so there are no barriers to me going, I just need to find their schedule!

WilLiAmHerschel Sun 17-Jan-16 15:38:26

How funny that you posted this as it was only yesterday I was looking up my local WI. I was considering joining and wanted to find out more. I must admit I do feel a bit nervous that as a 28 year old I would be a bit out of place. The youngest women in the pictures looked to be late 50s.. I don't want them to think I am weird. I don't really know what to do.

Gwenhwyfar Mon 25-Jan-16 21:28:03

The Welsh version, Merched y Wawr (means Women of the Dawn) has 'youth' groups called Clwb Gwawr. The 'youth' groups are really for around middle age - 30s to 30s rather than really young. Does the WI have anything like this?
Silly, I get your point about joining the generations, but I know from experience that if someone sees a group of people who are either much younger or older than themselves, they're reluctant to join. You'd have to work hard at getting an even mix.

AyeAmarok Thu 28-Jan-16 21:04:42

I might look out whether there's a local one to me.

I know all the words to Jerusalem grin

thecraftyfox Fri 29-Jan-16 17:18:21

I'm a member of the WI. The branch I'm in is very young overall. At 35 I'm definitely in the older half. They are the closest group for me to get to as the other localish group is 20 miles in the wrong direction from work and 8 miles the other way from home. I would like it to be more mixed but I also like the fact it is women's space. Near my home we have the Townswomen's guild but they meet during the day on a Tuesday which just isn't feasible for many younger working women.

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