Houses of Parliament Visit with Meg Hillier

After meeting our Chair at the Party in the Park 2015, MP for Hackney South & Shoreditch Meg Hillier came to talk at one of our meetings about what its like to be an MP and a woman in parliament.  More recently a few of us met her again on a tour of the Houses of Parliament.  It was such a privilege to meet her there one evening and see what goes on behind the scenes in the beautiful Palace of Westminster.

Office

To say thank you we took some of our Made in De Beauvoir goodies to Meg’s surgery for her to share with her staff:

MegCakeCard

 

 

The Flower and Produce Show

The De Beauvoir Flower and Produce Show (and Dog Show) has been taking place every year since 1979 (at least).

This year, for the first time, WE are jointly organising the show with De Beauvoir Gardeners and this means that we need some help and volunteers. We are not only running the cake stall (domestic delights) but helping with all aspects of the show which is a really lovely annual event – a village style show in the heart of London. It celebrates this corner of Hackney’s growing, creative and dog owning communities and is promoted through local schools to encourage children to bake, draw, grow and make – we even have cup cake decorating on the day.

DBG_2016Poster

As well as the usual flower, produce, baking and preserve categories there are new (WI) craft entries as follows:

  • For children – A glove puppet made from a sock

and for everyone:

  • Greeting card in any medium (e.g. sewn, painting, collage, photograph, crafting)
  • A floral tea or egg cosy, stitched, knitted or crocheted
  • Homemade piece of jewellery (brooch, necklace, bracelet or ring) on a garden theme

To make this year a success we really need your help in lots of ways:

  • Volunteers to help for a couple of hours on a stall.
  • Volunteers to help with setting up or clearing up. This includes husbands and burley teenagers to help with the heavy work of setting up gazebos, carrying books and tables – either in the morning or at the end (or both).
  • As many individual entries in all categories as possible (we are not doing WI group entries this year) again encourage neighbours, relatives and children to enter too. CLICK HERE to see all the categories so you can start planning your entries now.
  • Contributions of nice items for the tombola (bring items to the August and September meetings).
  • Whole cakes and savouries to sell on the day.
  • Bring your dog along and consider entering the floral fancy dress category.
  • Promote the show on facebook or twitter using the links on this page.
  • Put a poster up.

We will have sign-up sheets and be available for questions at the August social where we will also distribute posters and leaflets for those who have already signed up for leaflet distribution.

 

The Summer Show

blue_posterAs we head towards September and think about putting away those flip flops there’s still plenty of De Beauvoir activity to look forward to. In particular the fabulous De Beauvoir Gardener’s Flower and Produce Show, complete with Dog Show. Its on Sunday September 13th and the De Beauvoir WI are manning the Domestic Delights stall. Once again we are looking for volunteers to help run the stall as well as donations for sale such as cakes (complete cakes go down well), jams and chutneys, breads, savouries, plus your wonderful crafts such as knitting, sewing etc. If you can help or contribute please email us to let us know.

Please come to the event itself, bring friends and family and enter as many categories in the show as possible. We are hoping that many of you will enter – but do also encourage family and children to enter for their own glory – especially as all the children win prizes! There are prizes for home grown produce (fruit and veg), flowers, flower arranging, art and photography, cakes, breads and preserves – the full list of categories and information on pre-registering can be found HERE.

Lastly bring your pooches for the fun dog show which has become a bit of a De Beauvoir institution – but enter early as the limit is 50 dogs (that means baking 500 dog biscuits for the entrants)!

WI Resolutions – have your say

Making a difference on issues that matter to you
In 1915 the WI set out to give women a voice and be a force for good in our community.

Through the resolutions process every WI member has a unique opportunity to turn a concern into a national campaign every year backed by the weight of the whole WI movement.

From equal pay to climate change, organ donation and midwifery shortages, there is a huge diversity in the campaigns that have been adopted in recent years.
Now is the time where we can think about issues that matter to us and formulate a resolution that we can put forward to the Middlesex Federation. The deadline for this is currently not clear as Middlesex Federation need to sign off on any resolution which then needs to be submitted to the National Federation by 11th September. So we need to be thinking now if we want to submit a resolution. I imagine Middlesex will need this by the beginning of September.
Shortlisting criteria are available on the website but to sum up:

Topical – it fits with current areas of public interest or the NFWI’s work priorities

Timely – it is not ‘yesterdays’ news
Targeted – the resolution has a clear and realistic objective

Achievable – the resolution is calling for something meaningful and sensible that can be achieved

Partnership potential – the NFWI’s work will add value to the work of other organisations

Accurate – it reflects the current situation and does not use outdated or obsolete information as its basis

PR potential – there is potential to gain positive media coverage for the WI that could lead to an increase in membership, perhaps by challenging rather than reinforcing media and public stereotypes about the organisation

Appropriate – it fits with the WI’s charitable objectives, history and ethos

There is a guidelines document here

I have a couple of ideas that in rough are:-

Sex & Relationships Education to be made compulsory in all schools in England, primary and secondary, state and private.
Because young people today are bombarded with negative conflicting messages about sex & relationships & how men and women should treat each other – from music vids like Blurred Lines, to online porn, which they see whether or not they seek it out, but whose content is directly linked to harmful and sexist attitudes in boys and young men. And from the behaviour of their peers in school where abusive and coercive ‘sexting’ and sexual harassment are common. There is a campaign already running through the End Violence Against Women coalition together with the Everyday Sexism project.

And another idea would be to Make CPR training compulsory in schools for pupils aged 15 or 16+ which would enable them to feel confident in applying CPR to people suspected of having a heart attack and which the British Heart Foundation believes could save around 5000 lives a year.

Also an idea put forward by Amanda which was suggested by Meg Hillier MP there is www.magicbreakfast.com which gives free breakfasts to children to enable them to learn better in schools where over 35% of children receive free school  meals. Presumably the call would be for government to support this to run it out accross the country.

Sara

https://www.bhf.org.uk/news-from-the-bhf/news-archive/2015/february/thousands-back-bhf-campaign-to-get-cpr-taught-in-schools

Both of these ideas clearly have campaigns already active but we could contribute the weight of the WI in their support if they were to be taken on board as a resolution.
Let’s get the conversations started. I know a lot of you are passionate about other issues, come along to WI on August 6th, we are meeting in the Scolt Head, NOT the crypt_ lets get talking.

Bringing the past to life through costume

This was the theme of last week’s talk by Jenny Tiramani from The School of Historical Dress. Award-winning and passionate Jenny kept the packed room enthralled by whizzing us through a history of costume. She did this by showing us not only a slideshow of breathtakingly intricate costumes she had created, but by literally bringing one of them along too.

slideofcostumeBut it gets even better… not content to just show us an actual costume, fellow talented designer and teacher at the school in Hoxton, Luca Costigliolo, literally modelled the costume which included hose, footwear and a hat.

LucaWith names like Stephen Fry amongst the national treasures that they have created for Jenny and Luca are sticklers for authenticity and it’s no surprise that their client lists venues like The Globe , The Royal Opera House and Jenny’s upcoming work will be for The Marriage of Figaro at the Sydney Opera House, opening in August 2015.

One fact that stayed with many of us was that back in the day being a laundress was a much-coveted job (as well it should always be!) as fabric was so precious the person who washed it was well respected.  The school runs courses for anyone who missed this evening or for anyone who wants to learn more.

OTHER NEWS

Knit N Crochet Club – next meeting Monday 23rd March more info HERE.
Book Club – next meeting 10th March more info HERE.
Trips in March – to Pride and Prejudice and Delores’ Burlesque Show more info HERE.
Volunteer – we are looking for volunteers to bake a cake for the night shelter and/or one of our meetings – contact debeauvoirwi@hotmail.com for dates we still need help.
The DBA are looking for volunteers to help distribute their newsletters, a few streets is all the commitment necessary, contact info@debeauvoir.org.uk.