Perth and District has been very busy since the start of the meeting year. To date, our accomplishments include:
- A record high membership of 135; at least 12 new members signed up at our September Open House or shortly after. Holding the Open House every year helps draw new members and allows an early sign up for members wishing to participate in one or more of our 29 interest groups.
- New interest groups started this year include a Walking Challenge Group (commencing in January) and two additional book clubs to add to the existing 5 – Mystery Books and Evening Book Club.
- CFUW Perth and District ran a very successful All Candidates Meeting for the municipality of Tay Valley Township.
- We have another great roster of speakers this year: Roya Shams recounted her Story of Courage and Tenacity. Shannon Hogan, from Victim Services in SmithsFalls, presented in October on Human Trafficking. In January, we have Charlotte Gray who will discuss her book The Promise of Canada. February brings in the Perth Bell Choir for a performance and some discussion on the history of bells. March introduces our members to a social enterprise “African Bronze Honey”, a group that has trained over 3,000 Africans in the art of beekeeping as a sustainable and independent business. April will likely be the viewing of Anote’s Ark and we round out the year in May with our AGM and the Education Awards over a potluck dinner.
- Our Social Justice (SJC) and Environment (EC) Committees have increased their membership (8 and 14 respectively) and are focusing on special issues this year. EC will be publicly airing Anote’s Ark in April 2019, a documentary which looks at the devastating effects that climate change has on the people living on Kiribati, a low-lying atoll in the Pacific. A group of EC members recently attended a screening of Anthropocene: The Human Epoch, a cinematic meditation on humanity’s massive re-engineering of the planet and will bring the information back to the membership. As a first crack at looking at this year’s theme food security, the EC is running a workshop for the making of beeswax wraps as alternatives to plastic wrap. If successful, the workshop will be rolled out to the entire club. Of special note is that the Chair of the EC,
Dr.Shelley Ball, was inducted into the Fellowship of the Royal Canadian Geographical Society. The SJC is concentrating on local youth homelessness (including couch surfing and substandard housing). Each committee has a member write a newsletter article addressing some aspect of their focus for the year.
- Our recent Heritage Perth Christmas House Tour (held December 1 and 2, 2018d) was the most successful yet with record numbers visiting the homes and, we hope, record funds raised for our Education, Literacy and The Arts projects and Education Awards.
- Two of our members, Dr.Shelley Ball and Sandra Shaw, will be attending UNCSW 62 in March 2019 along with CFUW’s International Committee member, Shelagh Stevens.
- We are in the planning stage of events to celebrate the CFUW Centenary.
- We are organising who will be attending the CFUWAGM in Winnipeg.
We wish all our sisters in the other 50 Ontario Council clubs, and indeed all CFUW members everywhere in Canada, a safe and healthy holiday season and the greatest of personal prosperity in the coming year.