Two weeks ago in London the NFWI launched it new campaign petition – ‘Mums Matter’ calling on the UK government to keep its promises to reduce maternal deaths, especially in the developing world. The issue of actions to achieve these Millennium Goals, in particular no. 5 – the reduction of maternal mortality – is being championed by the WI with Oxfam. You can sign this petition on line at the www.theWI.org.uk/mumsmatter.
Last Thursday I was in Cardiff, Wales to launch the petition again, this time in the auspicious surroundings of the Welsh Assembly Senate, once more with Oxfam Cymru. Many agencies that already work in this area of maternal health were present as well as the first minister of the Welsh Assembly Government, Carwyn Jones. Angela Gorman spoke of her work with www.hopeforgracekodindo.org which helps many, many women during maternity.
Another organisation that gives women in this country help and a listening ear is Breast Cancer Care whose House of Commons reception I attended to launch their summer fund raiser of Strawberry Teas. I met several WI members – in any gathering of women it is a rare occurrence when none of them belong to the WI – who are volunteers and give their time to this cause. How refreshing to see so many women of every age, all in summer dresses and only a very few dark suited men; albeit men who care equally as passionately. I’m sure many WI members know of Breast Cancer Care, but it is always hoped that many more should know of its existence.