Glossary of terms
ACWW stands for Associated Country Women of the World; a world-wide organisation of country-women's societies to which the NFWI belongs. Federations, WIs and WI members can belong in their own right. For more information please visit the ACWW website.
ANC stands for Autumn National Council. See National Council for more information.
AGM stands for Annual General Meeting. A meeting of the NFWI open to all members under the act.
For more information about the NFWI AGM, visit the AGM pages.
The agenda of a meeting is the programme of business which must be dealt with by that meeting, in the order in which it is to be considered.
An amendment is a proposal to alter the wording or details of a resolution without affecting the principle of the resolution. An amendment must be clearly worded to show exactly which part of the resolution it is proposed to alter. Amendments are voted on before the resolution and, if passed they at once become part of the resolution.
A smaller body elected from amongst the members of a larger body for the purpose of carrying out the policy laid down by the larger body. The committee deals with the detailed business between meetings of a larger body and reports to it at stated times.
A member of WI elected to attend a meeting to vote according to the instructions which the WI has given. It is the duty of a delegate to present her WI with a clear report of the meeting which she has attended.
The holder of a certain office is often entitled to be a member of some committee or other body by reason of her office or ex-officio. The officers of a committee are always ex-officio members of the sub-committees appointed by it. Anyone ceasing to hold office at once loses any ex-officio rights because these belong not to any person but to the office itself. An ex-officio members has the full privileges and voting rights of all other committee members.
Federation (County Office)
A group of states or societies - in the case of WIs - joined together in one body with one government. In the WI this applies to the County or Island Federation groupings to which each WI belongs.
For a full list of federations please visit the Structure of the WI pages.
Short for Honorary. It is applied to unpaid officers. e.g. the Hon. Treasurer.
A member appointed to represent more than one WI at Annual General Meetings and Extraordinary General Meetings.
A command or instruction given by the electors to the elected, for example, resolutions passed at an Annual Meeting give the NFWI Board of Trustees mandates or instructions on how the WIs wish it to act.
MCS stands for Membership Communications System.
The fees which must be paid annually to the NFWI by all WIs and WI Associates.
MOODLE stands for Modular Object Orientated Dynamic Learning Environment.
It is an exciting online environment originally developed for training but overall offers support to WI members. It is a place where you can safely view information, download documents, and talk with other members as well as learn new skills.
Visit the WI Moodle here.
This is a meeting of Federation Chairmen and Treasurers, with the NFWI Board of Trustees, to discuss matters of policy and finance including the amount and division of subscriptions or membership fees.
NFWI (National Head Office)
National Federation of Women's Institutes.
Those who hold office - President, Vice-President, Chair, Vice-Chair, Treasurer and Secretary.
Pooling of Fares
An amount payable annually to the NFWI by each WI and federation. The resulting pool of money is used to pay the travelling expenses of each delegate to the NFWI AGM. Some federations operate a Pooling of Fares scheme for council meetings.
The President is the lynchpin of a Wl and is its leader and sets the style. She should be enthusiastic and decisive, yet approachable and friendly in her manner, interested in her members' views and ready to listen to their suggestions. It is from the contributions of a growing and diverse membership that the development of a Wl will spring and it falls to the President, more than anyone, to encourage and foster this development.
The President is elected at the Annual Meeting, by a secret ballot of the members, from the elected committee members.
As President your principle responsibilities are to:
- To have a copy of and be familiar with the WI Constitution and Rules for WIs
- Co-ordinate the affairs of your Wl
- Oversee the work of your fellow officers and committee members
- Encourage good relations between the Wl and both the local community and the outside world in general
- Represent your Wl both within and outside the organisation
- Ensure your Wl prospers through the active participation of its members at group, Federation and NFWI level and by means of a developing span of interests and activities.
A member sent to a meeting on behalf of a body with full discretionary powers to vote on behalf of that body.
A positive statement of opinion put forward for consideration at a meeting. A resolution calls for action, and should therefore deal with one subject only, and be clearly worded so that a straight vote can be taken on it.
A member appointed by her federation to co-ordinate educational and craft activities within its area.
WI (Local group - not office)
A member appointed by the NFWI to promote its policy within her own federation. She is the only member able to form and suspend WIs and supervise their 'enlargement' (WI Rule 45).
The Secretary works closely with the President and, like her, should be aware of the Wl's Constitution and Rules. She shares with the President the responsibility for the general arrangements of meetings but, as the executive officer of the committee, she is personally responsible for seeing committee business is carried out. The Secretary is elected annually, by the committee, at its first meeting after the Annual Meeting.
As Secretary your principle responsibilities are to:
- Ensure the smooth conduct of Wl business.
- Organise and co-ordinate the work of any sub-committees and working groups.
- Handle and acknowledge all correspondence, referring to the President as appropriate.
- Establish and maintain good relations with the Secretary and staff of the Federation, with the Secretary/Convenor of the Group and with the secretaries of local organisations.
The Treasurer is appointed by the committee, at the first meeting after the Annual Meeting, to look after the financial affairs of the Wl. As Treasurer, you have responsibility for the proper and efficient handling of your Wl's money and to advise on financial planning.
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