May Meeting, Hula-Hooping with Shakira

May meeting saw some of us shaking our booty, and whittling our waists with hula- hoops. Shakira Taylor  hula- hoop instructor showed us all manners of hula hooping

( Unfortunately ,  I was more than useless, but may purchase a hula- hoop to practise  at home . )

We were hula-hooping with our waists, with our bottoms and arms.

Hula –  hooping is a great way of keeping fit, as  you break out in a sweat, and is a fantastic way of burning calories.

For more info about Shakira’s classes, follow her on Twitter .  @hulafitwithshakira

or check out her website

Shakira will be running summer sessions at Roof East  which reopens on 3rd May.

You can follow them on Twitter @Roofeast

May meeting was also about the resolutions.

we listened to Laura and Helen present the arguments for and against both resolutions and decided to vote in favour of resolutions that will be voted on at the NFWI Annual meeting in June.

Both resolutions ( Appropriate care in hospitals for people with Dementia, and Avoid food waste, address food poverty, ) struck a cord with members, who had stories to share, in relation the dementia, and felt quite strongly about the amount of food thrown away, by the food industry. If the WI can make a difference, then that would be a bonus.


April Meeting AGM

It was our Annual Meeting(AM), where members were able to vote for the committee and president for 2016/2017.

Jane Bird ( our WI advisor),  oversaw the procedures. The meeting started with  a rendition of Jerusalem , then a brief talk from Sally Muylders  from the Forest Gate Festival committee, about raising  funds for the Forest Gate Festival via Crowd Funding.

The nominations for the committee were read out.

Adzovi Nyanyo, Andrea Mercer, Hellen Stack, Karen Kershaw, Kathy Lancaster, Laura Glendinning, Sally King, Sarah Jaggs, Stella Wybron and Wendy Levis  are the committee members for 2016/2017. ( There were a couple of members who were not at the meeting, who can be co-opted onto the committee). They will be announced  soon.

Stella read the financial report, and explained that the report was  still with the accountant. She went on to explain that there was another account  which was used to make donations to  local organisations, and to fund the 10 bursaries for members who would not normally be able to afford to join the WI.

The funds were  raised via the cake stall, the Big Lunch and the Harvest Stomp.

The local groups were Churches FoodBank, Forest Gate Community Garden, and Lola’s. Homeless.

The final report will be ready for members at the May Meeting.

Adzovi read the Annual report,  which touched on the last twelve months ( including the visit to Buckingham Palace, Adzovi’s visit to the AM at the Royal Albert Hall in the presence of HM the Queen, and our Centenary party.)

The  last part of the meeting was to vote for president. Adzovi was voted by members so will be president for the next twelve months.

Finally, we had a guess the baby competition, which was good fun.( It was quite difficult to match the photos to the members who’d  participated.

We’d like to thank Jane for coming  to oversee the meeting, and here’s to yet another successful year( this year being special, as it’s our 5th Birthday in October.)


March meeting -Yoga, Pilates Relaxation

Our March meeting was all about relaxation.


Local yoga  and Pilates teachers – Rosemarie St Loius ( left) Anna Bywoth ( centre) and Rachel Stephenson ( right) came and gave us a talk on  yoga, and Pilates.

Both Rosmarie  and Rachel  who have been teaching  for many years , spoke about how they accidently discovered, yoga and Pilates (  respectively  ) years ago,  and  how that first class changed their lives , ( after both being in high powered jobs – Rosemarie at the Stock Exchange, and Rachel in Media. )

Anna- spoke about working with autistic  young people in her former job,  again, attending yoga classes, losing her job, going to a yoga class, deciding in becoming a yoga teacher, meeting Rachel in Forest Gate, which  led to them opening The Space East: a vibrant new community  space for Pilates and yoga, which is situated in a railway arch in Forest Gate,

Rosemarie,  ( who  currently teaches yoga at Coffee7) started off the meeting with  a taster – chair yoga,( which was slightly challenging for some, as we discovered how bendy we were, or not in some cases,)  but still fun.

Anna and Rachel, spoke about The Space East, which has been open for a few months, how it is for the community, and how yoga and Pilates can help a person, both mentally and physically.

Rosemarie ended the meeting with relaxation, ( which involved, ambient music, candles and darkness .( A lovely feeling – I’m sure some members nodded off ).

For more information about  classes at The Space East or Rosemarie’s classes at Coffee7, you can either check them out on Facebook. ( look up The Space East – for Anna and Rachel,  or Intuitive Grounded Coaching  for Rosemarie).

You can also follow both on Twitter @TheSpaceEast and @Rosemarieyoga





February Meeting ( Cooking and all things Masterchef)

Our February meeting was such a good night

Michael Sanders local chef extraordinaire and Masterchef 2014 finalist, came and cooked, a superb three course meal in under an hour to a packed room of members .

The hall smelt divine as Michael cooked, told us the secrets of Masterchef, and his culinary journey,( he was inspired by Heston Blumenthal).  There were lots of hungry women, quizzing Michael about all aspects of cooking, and wanting to taste the dishes.( pan fried duck , pan fried hake with golden beetroot , and banana spring roll with ice cream and chocolate sauce. )

Michael runs his own business  Invite to Supper. – where you can find out more, or follow him on Twitter @invitetosupper

It’s all in the prepping!!!

January Meeting 2016

Happy belated New Year.

This month saw the return of our annual quiz night, with our favourite quiz mistress Sharon. Around 60 women came to the meeting, ( signed up for another year), joined in the quiz, the winning team for the second year running were The Trouble Makers , who each received a voucher from Living Well, ( run by one of our WI members at Woodgrange Market).

We had a great presentation of the eight shortlisted resolutions, (to find out more about the resolutions click on the Women’s Instititute web page).

We as a WI have chosen ‘providing free sanitary protection for homeless women’ .

Programme for 2016/17.

Final touches are being made as we speak, and the programme will be published shortly.

December Meeting- All things Bollywood

Well, what an evening!

We were entertained, ( with a few moves included) by Vane from Kyhal Arts

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( ) , then it was party time, with additional live tweeting by Elaine for @WomenoftheWI .  We are tweeting all week about all things WI as part of the centenary celebrations.

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There were Christmas raffles, tote bags giveaway,( for members and guests) , plus lots of lovely toiletries donated by our members for RAMP (Renewal Refugee Migrant Project) who are a locally based organisation, plus we sold out of our limited edition booklets  ‘100 Hints and Tips- Celebrating 100 years of the WI’ ( A special thanks to Helen Perry and Kath Williams for collating the tips).

Toiletries donated by members

Toiletries donated by members



November Meeting- Dementia Friends

Dementia Friends

Caroline with guests from the Danish branch of the Alzheimer’s Society.

We welcomed Caroline Wairira Dementia Friend and champion from Newham and Redbridge Alzheimer’s Society. She led a lively, interactive session , talking about living with dementia, and how to become a dementia friend . Fun but also thought provoking

We also were given a brief talk about a recent trip to Calais from Andy and Dinna,( who have both been out to Calais, providing neccessary items for the refugees who are out there.

They both gave a brief description of their time out in Calais ,  about refugees from different countries, and why they’ve fled leaving most of their belongings behind.

Through our raffle, we raised  about £120.00 for the Calais refugees. Andy left a list of organisations that are bringing aid to the refugees, and how we can contribute. More details to follow.