Message from CFUW National to all CFUW Members

We recently received the following message from CFUW National to be circulated to members.

January 2021

The Board has spent the past several months looking for a solution to the very thorny GWI issue which has divided CFUW for the past several years.  We took the Mediation Report to heart, have established a Mediation Implementation Committee and have looked for a solution that will allow us to unite again to focus on issues that matter to women and girls in Canada and beyond.  We acknowledge that there are strong feelings both to support continued GWI membership and against continued membership.

The solution we came up with, to allow clubs that don’t want to support GWI financially to opt out and to allow clubs that do want to support GWI financially to opt in, is not perfect.  We know some clubs would like to see all clubs in or all clubs out.  However, striving for those outcomes has not been productive. By allowing clubs to act on their preferences, we hope we can get back to working on the important issues that face us here in our communities and on the provincial, national and international stages.

We wanted to share this with you in December so you could think about it.  The dialogue sessions in January will allow us to hear your ideas and concerns, and to answer questions.  We want to give clubs a chance to discuss this internally in February and March so that we can take an initial opt-in opt-out poll by the end of March.  This will give all of us time to prepare for the AGM at which some of the specifics may be voted on and also communicate with GWI about the changes in member numbers we will report and on which our GWI dues will be calculated.  And we will continue to work to ensure each club has an effective voice in pursuit of the path it chooses to follow.

The opt-in clubs may want a way to communicate and work together. The opt-out clubs may want to find a different way to engage internationally.  We may find common ground on issues if not on organizational structure.

We believe the decision to allow clubs to decide for themselves whether to support GWI financially or not, is the only way to prevent the organization from coming apart.  We want to build an environment in which each club pursues the path that is right for its members and all clubs respect the choices of other clubs, even if they choose a different path.

GWI Per Capita Dues – Frequently Asked Questions

At the December 1, 2020 CFUW Board of Directors Meeting, the board took a bold new step in hopes of moving beyond the divide between clubs that wish to maintain CFUW’s membership in GWI and those that wish to withdraw. The board adopted a motion that permits clubs to indicate whether they wish to have their members included in the GWI per capita dues calculation. CFUW will pay GWI per capita dues on the basis of the clubs that indicate they wish to have their members counted. The board appreciates that some clubs and individual members question the board’s decision without consultation on this specific plan of action with the membership despite the fact that the board has committed to being open and transparent.  The board believes that this is a matter of urgency.  Decisive action was necessary as clubs are leaving, threatening to leave and/or withhold their dues which would make it impossible for CFUW to meet its financial obligations. View the document below.

Dialogue Sessions Registration

National has scheduled two dialogue sessions and invites all members to attend. The first session is set for Thursday, January 28,2021 at 7:00 pm eastern time and the second session Saturday, January 30,2021 at 12:00 pm eastern time.

Connections & Advocacy and Action

Report taken from the December edition of The CFUW Hamilton Happenings.

Inasmuch “Porch” Drive

Many thanks to all of you who partici- pated by offering your porch, and by donating so generously to our collection of personal care items for women and children living at Inasmuch House. It is a shelter and a safe space for women and their children to rebuild their lives after violence and abuse.

We have done this drive at the November General Meeting for the past several years, but this year we asked members to drop off their donation on specific porches and we were delighted with the response.

By the time we had visited all the porches my car was filled to capacity and Pat and I had the delivery made to Inasmuch House by 2pm.

Myrtle and Pat”

Brock Connections & Scholarship

Our Scholarship Committee has shared this charming and most appreciated video from Brock University which was issued for National Philanthropy Day. For more information, you can read the whole article in our CFUW Hamilton newsletter, The CFUW-Hamilton Happenings. You can access The Happenings at the link found below.  

“Providing scholarships to women is one of the most important reasons for belonging to CFUW and even in this time, when so many of our usual activities are curtailed, our scholarship fund remains the same and needs your support.”

December Connections & Art Appreciation

Our Art Appreciation Group notes that this year Canada Post issued holiday stamps featuring the festive paintings of Nova Scotia folk artist Maud Lewis.

Today we are sharing a short CBC Nova Scotia Youtube video as an introduction to Maud Lewis, an inspirational Canadian Artist.

We will be hearing more from our Art Appreciation Group as we connect and safely navigate our pandemic winter. There are a few local artist artists whose work they would like to highlight and share with us.