CPFT runs a WI initiative across the Trust for women - both staff, service users and from the local community - to get together on an equal footing and learn new skills.

In 2014 staff at CPFT set up the Country's first WI initiative based in an NHS setting for staff, service users and the local community. The Daisy Change WI has since led to the creation of Rising Roses WI, which now runs sessions every two weeks in Peterborough.

The initial inspiration for the initiative came from the WI campaign, Care Not Custody, which saw the WI campaigning for better treatment of people with mental health issues. The campaign also saw the launch of WIs being set up in prison environments. The idea behind setting up WIs at CPFT was so that women could come together on an entirely equal footing.

CPFT is committed to:

Inspiring all women within the Trust to engage with and join the WI community.

We will do this through;

  • Providing free access to Trust-based WI groups
  • Acting as ambassador to the WI community and supporting the joining of WIs through a buddy system


Joanne Croxford who was one of the founding members said: "“You walk through the door of a meeting and you are welcomed and valued for the person that you are - not a diagnosis, nor a medication. You are a member of the WI and with that you are connected with the wider WI network, too. We welcome members from other WIs to visit us with the intention that when one of our members leave services, they already feel that they know someone at their local WI and will be more inclined to go along to a meeting and seek out the same fellowship they received whilst at a CPFT based WI."

For more information on the Rising Roses WI please click here.

When does the Rising Roses WI meet?
Peterborough-based Rising Roses WI, meets the second and fourth Wednesday of every month in the Activity Room on Maple ward at the Cavell Centre. The meetings alternative between being  afternoon and evening sessions  to  give members a chance to attend the meeting which best suits them. .

Who can join?
Any person who identifies themselves as a woman over the age of 18 is welcome. All we ask is for people to come with an open mind. Those who do attend can expect to be welcomed with a friendly smile and an offer of a hot drink served in authentic WI vintage china.

What kinds of activities are there?

Everything and anything that the members want to do! Confirmed for our programme this year is a Members' "do and dabble" featuring henna tattoos and threading; a session on pampering and wellness; recording a Radio jingle; French Arm knitting; and a Bollywood evening fundraiser! Fun and education are at the heart of everything we do!

For more information please contact:
Joanne Croxford, Social Recovery Project Manager
E: joanne.croxford@cpft.nhs.uk
T: 01223 218568
M: 07973 976325

What is the WI?
The Women's Institute (WI) is an organisation that started 120 years ago in Canada. It was formed as the result of a mother feeding her child soured milk, which lead to his death. The mother, Adelaide Hoodless, decided to start a group where women could come together to be educated in domestic life so that no child would ever suffer again.

The WI was adopted first in Wales followed by England in 1915 by women from the Suffrage movement to encourage women to become active in feeding the nation during the First World War. From there, the WI became a campaigning organisation at its core and went on to lobby the Government on a wide range of female-related issues from the safe traffic of sex workers, to campaigning for more midwives.

Keep Britain Tidy was a key WI-led initiative that has since been sited as the ‘backbone of the country’ thanks to its food preserving effort during the second world war teamed with its money raising efforts for local charities.

The WI welcomes anyone identifying themselves as a woman over the age 18 and has a membership as vast as its reach in society. There are 232, 000 WI members across the country with 40,000 joining alone in the last year.

Further information

The page was last updated on 12 January 2017 by eleanor.buckle.

Cambridgeshire and Peterborough NHS Foundation Trust
Elizabeth House, Fulbourn Hospital
Cambridge, CB21 5EF

T 01223 219400 (open 8:30am to 5pm)
F 01480 398501

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