We are a vibrant group that meets the second Wednesday of each month from September through to June. Each meeting generally has a business portion, and an education portion, with a speaker or topic of interest, followed by our social with beverages and a treat.
All Women’s Institute (WI) actions are centered around the guiding principles of The Mary Stewart Collect. Read it and you will feel the essence of being a WI member!
If you are interested in attending any of our meetings to see what they are like, it's easy! Call one of our members, tell them that you would like to attend and they will tell you the location of the next monthly meeting! Bring a friend as well if you like! The more the merrier!
We host two Blood Donor Clinics in Russell each year. About 6 members from our branch volunteer to 'man' the refreshments centre after the blood donation has been given. We escort the donor to the recuperation area, inquire how they are feeling, and ask them what refreshment they would enjoy! Of course, goodies are available for consumption. We update donor cards and gently care for donors (after their donation) for the suggested 15-minute recuperation time. We feel very good about this work and it has been one of our projects for many, many years!
In July, we generally have a full-day excursion as our 'Summer Trip Day' and in August we have a preparation meeting for the Russell Fair. The Russell Village WI ladies make sandwiches, pies, teas, and coffee to sell at the fair as one of our main fundraisers! Our sandwiches and pie are staples for not only the fair-goers, but for fair vendors and staff, as it is real food!
Another of our projects is our 'Keep Russell Blooming' campaign! We have 30+ hanging baskets located around the village core and 12 street planters as well. We collect funds to pay for the flowers and their care during the summer season! The support we receive is a fantastic indicator of the success and popularity of this 10+ year project!
Each summer we start advertising for our 'Berry Sale' ...another fundraiser which enables us to raise funds to pay for our Projects! Blueberries, Raspberries and Cranberries!! Flash frozen and ready for use! Yummm! A Village favorite!
There are other things we get into as well such as lobbying or cooking classes. Our members decide which events and activities they particpate in. Each member has their favorites! We also welcome non-members from the community to help us out, just for the fun of it.
To round things out, we cater meals several times a year for the Russell Lions Club as a fundraising endeavour.
We have 'Thinking of You' baskets and cards that we send out if we hear of someone who needs a little up-lifting. We donate and collect items for Naomi's Place (a sanctuary for battered women and their children), and we support numerous other programs such as Doctors Without Boarders, and Habitat for Humanity and other local initiatives.
All of these events are fun! We have a great group of ladies who are very dedicated to our volunteer work. After all, we are an organization for personal growth and community action, just as our program says! But most of all we are all friends!
Van Dusen, Shirley