The Online Annual Meeting 2021
Woo-hoo it's another remote AM for us!
This page will bring you all of our official 'business' for another year and will allow us to use our actual monthly meeting for something fun!
All our necessary processes have been performed by email and via online form submissions.
From this moment on, just imagine the below being delivered to you face-to-face - do take the time to really read through the reports.
Here you will find:
The 2020 Treasurer's Report
The Secretary's Committee Report
The President's Address
Our Charity Support Vote Result
The new committee line up for 2021/2022
The Result of the President Nomination Process...
Just as a reminder:
the AM would 'usually' be carried out during the course of a physical meeting - with each of these reports being presented;
the presentations would be followed by a new committee forming;
then all Members would then be asked to anonymously nominate a President from within the membership of the new committee;
next, any of the nominated committee members would be free to accept or decline their nomination;
If just one nominated member accepts their nomination then they become President, but If more than one nominated member accepts their nomination, then the entire membership is asked to vote for the next President.
The 2020 Treasurer's Report
Our most excellent Treasurer, Tracy S, has put together our 2020 reports.
Our financial year runs from 01/01/2020 - 31/12/2020.
Here is the official document for your review - The Treasurer's Report 2020 which includes the official Cam City WI Financial Statement
Click on an image below to view the PDF
Tracy took some time to give us a high level summary that gives us some direction and explanation of: our current status and for the future of our finances. Below are Treasurer's notes for us to understand the accounts.
Membership numbers had fallen from 52 in 2018 to 48 in 2020. We do not expect this trend to continue, and predicted membership for 2021 is 56+.
Comparison figures for expenses in 2019 includes £1019.19 carried forward from 2018. 2020 expenses have therefore decreased by 25% over average of previous 2 years.
Whereas there are reduced premises costs in 2020, the expenses do reflect the additional support that Cam City WI has given to members in delivering an interactive online programme during the year.
Additional fundraising is planned for 2021 to reduce the current carried forward deficit and maintain current reserves.
The new committee will be looking for ways to ensure that we can:
increase our income - through fundraising and by increasing the number of members in 2021/2022
reduce our outgoings with some spending efficiency - with enough lead time, we could ask members to source materials we will need for practical meetings. We can also ask members to lead meetings and share their knowledge and skills.
The 2020/2021 Secretary's Committee Report
Our most amazing Secretary, Helen L has prepared this year's report and illustrated it with her now infamous Picture Presentation!
Cam City WI Committee Report
April 2019 - March 2020
April 2020: Quizzes and hunts!
We weren’t quite ready for online meetings, but we had some cracking quizzes with Tracy S as our quiz mistress and a fun Sunday scavenger hunt from our walking club lead Lisa C.
May 2020: Vintage Hairstyling
We were joined by Becks Simpson of 'Thairapy' for a lesson in Vintage Hairstyling and how to cut our own fringes, much appreciated by many of us missing the salons.
Also in May 2020:
We also had our first 'Bingo' fundraiser with prizes, which every winner kindly donated back into our fundraising for Cambridge Rape Crisis Centre.
June 2020: Cook-along with Kelly Mauger from Denman - the WI's own college
We welcomed the extremely talented Kelly Mauger from the Denman Cookery School (and off of Channel 4's Bake Off, The Professionals) for an at home Cook-along, creating delicious Date & Coconut Bon Bons.
Also in June 2020:
We hosted another CamCo Quiz, comedy themed this time.
July 2020: Lockdown Musings
We welcomed poetry performance artist, Megan Beech who guided us through a writing exercise in Lockdown Musings.
She also presented our specially commissioned poem:
In this bitter bizarre year, we are still here.
Through wonky wi-fi and worries and laughter and longing and tears, we persevere.
We crafters, we companions, we anchors to each other in the storm of it all,
We call, we fall and rise.
We scheme and dream and smile together.
The wetter the weather, the stronger the measures of G&T, cups of kindness, cake and tea.
We try to find some cherished time with minds alike in the WI.
We find our 'why' in comfort and company, reaching beyond screens.
We see anew the things that truly matter.
Though scattered, we can connect.
We can get those beams of light, bright bountiful rays refilling our days.
We can keep safe and stay sane, unwind our anxious brains.
If we claim some of our time to care for each other, be fierce friends and mutual supporters,
we are still Cam City over these troubled waters.
by Megan Beech
August 2020: Feminism in Stand Up
Ruth Kern joined us for a talk on Stand up Comedy and Feminism. We also welcomed Clare from CRCC to give us an update on how the charity was coping with the pandemic and the crisis the lockdowns had created. We then named the winner of our fabulous boozy raffle, including gin glasses created by Tracy, which raised money for CRCC.
September 2020: Applique Blue Tits
We sent out little surprise kits for this meeting, so the fabulous Jo Avery could give us a short lesson on Needle Turn Applique creating extremely cute Blue Tits.
October 2020: Modern Embroidery Art
We had a talk from Modern Embroidery Artist, Richard McVetis. He talked us through the process and inspiration of his incredibly detailed work.
November 2020: Pumpkin Paint-along with the Quirky Bird
The extremely popular Lynn Barrow aka Quirky Bird guided us through our first watercolour paint-along, an autumn themed pumpkin scene. We delivered watercolour kits in advance so everyone could take part.
December 2020: Chocolate Tasting
We all enjoyed the Chocolate Talk with local chocolate maker Bumble & Oak, with delicious squares of single origin chocolate and a handmade special chocolate delivered for members to try at home with tasting notes.
Also in December 2020:
We enjoyed a Christmas themed CamCo Bingo ‘n’ Quiz, with special chocolate prizes!
January 2021: Beautiful Hands
Tanya from Neal’s Yard guided us through a home pamper session for our hands, much needed time to ease the winter lockdown blues.
February 2021: The Scone-along!
Our incredible baking superstar member Ruth B, guided us through the 'Scone-along' and Soda Bread baking tutorial. I think everyone agrees her scone recipe is the best.
March 2021: The Medium, The Magician and the Con Artist: Women Who Made Magic
We had a magical history lesson from Ashton Carter. This was an inspiring talk, and we will be welcoming Ashton back later in the year for a magic lesson.
April 2021: Frida Kahlo Paint-along with the Quirky Bird
We enjoyed our first lesson with Lynn so much, we had to have her back and this time the Quirky Bird guided us through a Frida Khalo inspired painting, which has also featured on the cover of WI Life magazine.
May 2021: Bee Keeping and Beeswax Wraps
We began the meeting with a homemade beeswax wrap tutorial from Mel R, using kits we delivered out to members. We then welcomed fellow WI member Rebecca Moore, who talked us through her very interesting beekeeping journey.
What another busy reading year. Book club discussed; Invisible Women by Caroline Criado Perez, The Mirror & the Light by Hilary Mantel, The Guest Cat by Takashi Hiraide, The Shining by Stephen King, This is going to hurt by Adam Kay, Where the Crawdads Sing by Delia Owens and The Girl with the Louding Voice by Abi Dare.
Auction of Promises
We raised £827.21 for our WI with bids on all these amazing items offered by our members:
A 'Loaf Cake' made for you QUARTERLY (that's 4 whole cakes!) in 2021 by Lisa C
A Reduction Lino Cut and Print Lesson with Karina Q
A lesson in making your own clay pot with Karina Q
A freshly baked Chocolate Chip Banana Bread Loaf cake by Karina Q
An Introduction to Zentangle Pack from Megan I
A selection of seeds and garden pots from Megan I
A kit and tutorial to make your own folded and pinned festive bauble with Mel R
A handmade ceramic piece made by Sarah N
A ceramic workshop session for up to two people with Sarah N
An 8” square carrot cake with cream cheese icing by Bronwyn R
A bundle of 10 mixed handmade greetings cards by Helen M
A session of gardening from Josie H
Company and encouragement for anyone who wishes to take up or getting back into running from Josie H
A bouquet of flowers to be delivered on a date of your choosing by Mary H
A 1:1 knitting lesson with Ruth B
A Calligraphy commission by Mel R
A patchwork lesson(s) with Mel R
A tray of freshly homemade cinnamon rolls from Verity
A book delivery every other month from Sharon M
A 40x60 beautiful handmade commission of a stained glass panel depicting a book stack to be made by Tracy S
A custom playmat for a toddler/kid handmade by Maeva V
An amigurumi animal handmade by Maeva V
A set of 4 x 1hr sessions of French language lessons/conversation with Maeva V.
You have all been through an incredibly challenging year, but you’ve made it! Pat yourselves on the back, you’re amazing! And a special big up for all our key workers, not all heroes wear capes.
Special mentions also go to:
Quiz Mistress, Emma Connelly, for always providing excellent quiz content.
Our President Mel, for getting us going online in a flash, without her our WI meetings would have fizzled out under the pressures of the pandemic.
Our Treasurer Tracy, who has continued to do an incredible job, keeping us up to date of our finances. She’s also created fabulous hampers for our raffles and been a marvellous quiz hostess. We all thank you for your time on committee.
And as it’s my last year, I’d also like to say thank you to all the committee members I’ve had the pleasure to volunteer with since joining committee in 2016. I’ve learnt a lot about the WI since joining and feel proud to have played a part in our WI and all the amazing things we’ve achieved over the years. If you haven’t already, go along to a committee meeting and see how you can help too.
President's Address 2020/2021 by Melanie Reed
'To all our lovely Members,
I need to start by sending you all a massive grin - imagine it now, it's very toothy and gummy and plastered over my face - because as I have been so incredibly proud of our past year! 'Pandemic-schpamdemic', in terms of WI activity we have been ruddy brilliant.
Every time someone in my life lets out a moan and a groan when they hear the word 'Zoom' I kinda just want to laugh because I am so grateful that we have had the opportunities that we have had to get together online - there are a hella'lot of WI's that just stopped. We didn't. Far from it. We picked up and ran with with it, had some of our best meetings ever (in my opinion) and even grew the membership! I'm proud of our adaptation and how we have embraced the situation a pandemic threw at us. However much it will be marvelous to see you all in the ruddy flesh when it is safe to do so, I will look back on the past year with such a full heart.
And there is more to come! Cam City WI are continuing with an online programme - full of fun and education and practical things we love - up until December 2021. We will create smaller, face-to-face opportunities during the rest of 2021 safely and carefully. For us, there is no need to rush at it. The first Wednesday of the month will still be reserved for Zooming together.
Looking back on the past 12 months is so heartening - so many of you come to our meetings, ready to join in and engage, which has been the highlight for me. Your committee worked so hard together coming up with ideas and a programme to interest you and we all contributed in the research, collation and delivery of practical kits for you to use.
Our fabulous Secretary Helen prepared the committee report above, to give you all a real sense of how much we have learnt and done in just 12 months. Our essential and brilliant Treasurer Tracy has reported all the things financial you need, to understand how your membership money was put to great use in 2020. We thank both of these fantastic women so much, for their efforts and we are glad that even though they are stepping back from committee now, that they remain members.
Our committee has grown and changed this year too. We were supported by the lovely Sarah C who recently handed over the Campaigns Manager role to the ready, willing and very able, Kate A. We also had great ideas help and support from the wonderful Sharon M. Sarah and Sharon needed to step back from committee mid-year due to personal commitments, but we also happily welcomed Mary H, Maeva V, Jade dQ and Bronwyn R mid-year. Your committee is also staunchly supported by Liz C and Jane H - always happy to help contribute ideas and perspective for decision making. I will say this again and probably a million times more - a WI is what it's committee and members make it, so always feel like you can get involved, you will always be welcomed! Verity G and Sheena D are joining us this year and I cannot wait to see what they will bring.
As for me, I do have a proper love for being President, I really do, and once you read below you will see that I'm going to be here for the next year. It will be my final year as President, and on committee, as there's a good rule of three for most WI's and those in officer roles (and by this time next year I will have been on committee for 6 and a half years!). I will however happily be continuing to do what I love doing this coming year - the communications, the website and social media, along with leading our meetings and co-ordinating the meeting programme - and I've hopes that committee members will want to grab these fantastic parts of the job and run with them in to the next year and year after that - and keep evolving it and making it even better!
We have welcomed many new members this year, and I look forward to the time when we can meet up and get to know each other even better. We'll soon be able to safely bring back craft club, book club and walking club in person, so keep being awesome online for now and we'll see what the future brings for a 'blended' approach to WI.
What doors a pandemic can open if we are willing to check out what's behind them.
Thank you for being a member of Cam City WI.
Charity Support for 2021/22
Your votes were counted and we will be happy to now fundraise for 'Cambridge Women's Aid' going forward.
Cambridge Women's Aid provides dedicated and specialist support to women and children affected by domestic abuse.
Your confirmed Committee for 2021/2022
Your volunteer Committee members for 2020/2021 are:
There were two committee members nominated for President for 2021/2022 via an online form delivered by email to all members).
The nominations were for Bronwyn R and Melanie R.
Melanie R was the ONLY nominated Committee Member to accept their nomination and will therefore continue as President of Cam City WI for 2021/2022. (This means no further voting from the membership is necessary!)