hangin’ out with the WI ..

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On a cold day in February, we joined our fabulous friends from Start and headed off to Denham College in Oxford (otherwise known as The WI HQ) to spend the day with the lovely ladies from The Women’s Institute. Organised by Start, the first WI cascade day brought together over 130 ladies from all over the UK and 9 great organisations to share ideas and equip the participants with simple, sustainable steps that they could take back and initiate in their own individual communities.

Joining us for the day were some fabulous people: Hillary & Clare from Make and Mend it, Nick from Project Dirt, Edwin from Give Me Tap, Gin from B&Q, Jonathan from M&S, Rita & Kate from The Big Lunch, Terena from The Greening Campaign and Mak & Will from The Edible Bus-stop

Kicking off, Michael and Kerry from Start played a 21st century version of ‘Play your cards right’ with the whole audience shouting ‘higher’ or ‘lower’ to facts taken from Eco Action Trumps. Although no “Brucey bonuses” were awarded on this occasion, it definitely raised the energy levels in the room whilst helping everyone to think about the little actions you do and how they can be done differently.

Following the ladies split into 7 groups and we ran back-to-back workshops to introduce each group to Ecomodo. To inspire the ladies to think about what resources they already have and those might like to lend or borrow – we played our ever favourite sticky note game with some interesting results.

Green notes for items you have to lend. Orange ones for things you’d like to borrow.

In general, the response to Ecomodo was very good and it was great to find one of the ladies was already a member with stuff she was lending on Ecomodo. Playing the sticky game I’m always amazed, even within small groups, how quickly we find matches between people who have stuff and people who need it and we even found one lady who wanted to learn how to make jam! Of course this got lots of responses!

And a day with the WI wouldn’t be complete without afternoon tea and lots of yummy cake!

Visit our page to see how the Women’s Institute can use Ecomodo to bring their community together to share, fundraise and more!

Visit Start’s page to see more about the event and download their toolkit for the day.

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