The first step to becoming a WI member is to join a WI

In Essex we have many WIs so you should not be too far away from one. To access your nearest WI go to the Membership link, then Find a WI and insert your postcode into Search for a WI and insert the distance you wish to travel, this will list the WIs in your chosen geographic area. You may wish to consider which day of the week and which time best suits you and this information will be listed under each WI.  If you have any problems please contact Essex Federation Secretary, as listed on our home page.

It is always a good idea to visit a couple of WIs as each WI has its own unique culture and interests. You may be asked to make a small contribution as a visitor to attend a meeting. Once you find a WI that you feel fits in with your views, aspirations and interests you speak to a committee member about joining and many will let you attend up to three times as a visitor.

If you are joining as a new member i.e. you have not been a member in the last 12-15 months, there is a pro rata membership joining fee dependent upon the time of the year you join. Membership is annual and subscriptions are set by NFWI to commence in April of each year (further information the Membership link – Membership Information).

You can be a full member of one WI and a dual member of another; as a dual member your membership subscription at the second WI is reduced.

If you would like to be a WI member but do not wish to be a member of a specific WI why not consider becoming a WI Associate, further information under Membership – Associate Membership

Federation of Essex Women’s Institutes

Here at Federation, we are always looking for WI members to be more involved at Federation level.

We have a number of committees that you could be a part of including:-

Arts and Leisure; Cookery and Creative Crafts; Public Affairs; or the Media/Digital Team. 

Any member is welcome to come and observe these committees at work, please contact the Fed Sec for more details.  You have to be invited to be a member of a committee and appointments are for a two-year period.

WI advisers play a very important role in helping and advising WIs, if you feel that you have the skills and time to devote to this role, please contact us for more details. Please note that to be a WI adviser a period of training is compulsory.

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If you are interested then please email for more details.

National Federation of Women’s Institutes

Throughout the year NFWI offers members the opportunity to visit head office in London to meet the permanent staff who work there and members of the NFWI board. These are very informative days and give members the opportunity to raise questions, concerns and see the NFWI in action. 

NFWI also has a number of committees that WI members sit on, further information on these can be found on NFWI webpage.

The WI is What You Make It and your involvement will be dependent upon your individual circumstances, but do get involved and be a part of an amazing, diverse organisation.