Help at hand for Women in the Middle

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Women of Arran – are you feeling isolated after living through the middle of a pandemic?

Did you move to the island during lockdown and haven’t had a chance to meet new people?

The Arran Federation of Scottish Women’s Institutes, with a grant from the Communities Mental Health and Wellbeing Fund, is running a series of taster sessions for ‘Women in the Middle’ and we hope you will come along.

Sessions will run during March on using a sewing machine, walking netball, cookery, and macramé at various locations around the island. They are open to all women.

Each one will last for a couple of hours, and involve a short welcome, the activity and a coffee break for chat, socialising, and hopefully the opportunity to make new friends.

Sessions will be run by volunteers from the SWI and in liaison with Arran Repair Cafe: cookery – Jerry Arthur; macrame – Walter Brown; machine sewing – Chrissie Duncan; walking netball – Chris Brown. All taster sessions are FREE.

If the sessions are successful, they will be repeated. All sessions will be run in accordance with Covid advice.

If you would like the opportunity to meet other women in a safe relaxed space in your local area, away from the responsibilities of home and work, then come along.

Text or phone Kirsty Forsyth on 07879 416383 or email for further information/to book a place, alternatively send a message to the Arran SWI Federation Facebook page.

The SWI is active on Arran

The first Women’s Institute was formed in Scotland in 1917 and now has just over 12,000 members.

Nationally the SWI supports campaigns that are important to women across the world. Each year it identifies a Charity of the Year to promote and support e.g. Feed
The Minds – a charity that has helped empower women in poverty particularly those with no access to menstrual sanitary products.

The first institute on Arran was formed in Shiskine in 1920 with the Arran Federation formed of four institutes five years later. Over the years the federation has supported:
• The introduction of British Summer Time
• Winter ferry timetables
• Cervical smear campaign
• The Arran War Memorial Hospital

There are four  thriving institutes on the island with currently around 65 members of different ages, backgrounds and interests, but we are always looking to welcome more members.

The SWI supports national and local campaigns and by collecting pennies for friendship at its meetings, by laying down small coins to vote for competition items. It also supports the ACWW (Associated Country Women of the World).

If there are local issues that you are passionate about the institutes would love to hear from you.

The institutes are:

Arran High School
2nd Thursday of the month at 7pm
Contact: President Lynn 700542 or
Secretary Angela 600475

Kildonan Village Hall
3rd Monday of the month 7.30pm
Contact: President Chris 820226 or
Secretary Nancy 700233

Kilmory Village Hall
2nd Monday of the month at 7.30pm
Contact: President Phyllis 870263 or
Secretary Pippa 870515

Shiskine Village Hall
1st Wednesday of the month at 7.30pm
Contact: President Joan 860479 or
Secretary Carole 860530