Women in Philanthropy (WiP) brings together influential and talented women from across Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland with an aim to improve local life.
WiP members work, or have worked, as scientists, journalists, designers, financial experts and lawyers. They are leaders and organisers of many things: large and small companies, university and hospital departments, local or central Government, and of course, families and homes.
Women in Philanthropy doesn’t ask for endless money, or take up already stretched time. It’s building a Fund – the WiP Fund – via a fixed donation of £500 per member per year. £250 is invested to build a ‘future-proofed’ fund to support local charities. Each member then gives the other £250 of their donation as they choose across the year’s three local charities, at the culminating WiP Awards Lunch in February.
On Friday 9th October there was a lunch and tour event of Fire Service Headquarters in Birstall.
WiP members, and those looking to join, took part in a behind the scenes tour of the Fire Service. The event helped to connect women with one of Leicestershire and Rutland’s local services and show how important the work of the Fire and Rescue service is.
Alongside this the 3 chosen WiP charities were able to talk about their important work. Jo Elks of Home-Start Melton & Rutland, Gill Taylor of Women’s Aid Leicestershire and Hannah Currington of VASL Young Carers Group all came along to the event.
Assistant Chief Fire and Rescue Officer, Steve Lunn, extended a warm welcome to everyone and spoke about the history of the service, the incidents they respond to and the challenges facing them in light of recent budget cuts. Steph Morgan, trustee here at Leicestershire and Rutland Community Foundation and WiP Steering Group member, also spoke and highlighted how the network of women is working together to make an important difference to local charities.
During the tour those attending had the opportunity to ask questions about the historical building, the clothes and equipment used and got to see fire engines close up.
A demonstration involving a smoke filled house, where two dummies were dramatically rescued also took place. Luckily in this instance the training building was filled with vapour, a safe smoke substitute!
Another demonstration involved fire fighters car-cutting. Here the fire fighters explained how these types of rescue make up the biggest proportion of their work. 3 fire fighters used equipment to show how quickly they could cut doors and roof from a crashed car and how they work with paramedics and the police service.
The next WiP event is taking place on Wednesday 2nd December at The Belmont Hotel from 3-5pm. The event is free to attend but guests do need to register in advance.