Women's Institutes

Voluntary women's organisation

The Women's Institute (WI), a community-based organisation for women, was founded in Stoney Creek, Ontario, Canada, by Adelaide Hoodless in 1897. It was based on the British concept of Women's Guilds, created by Rev Archibald Charteris in 1887 and originally confined to the Church of Scotland. From Canada the organisation spread back to the motherland, throughout the British Empire and Commonwealth, and thence to other countries. Many WIs belong to the Associated Country Women of the World organization.

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