Maureen Macleod

I’ve lived in Auchterhouse since 1981 and often heard about ‘The Rural’ but I thought that was for the more mature ladies of the community!

Around 10 years ago I was at our village Burns Supper which is organised by the SWI and saw older ladies struggling to serve and that was the moment I decided it was time to step up to the plate if I wanted these traditions to continue. And how wrong could I have been about the age criteria. We now have a ‘rural’ with members from their 20s to their 90s. We all get along famously and everyone can learn something from other members. Our ‘rural’ has grown in numbers year on year and we are now one of the larger Institutes in Angus and very strong. A varied and fun programme that appeals to all ages and a warm welcome – that to me is the future of our organisation. We also have a strong record in taking part in local and even national competitions within the organisation but it’s always the taking part which is the most important aspect and if we do well so much the better!

Before long I found myself on the committee and served terms as Secretary and Treasurer before taking on President. I joined the Angus Federation executive committee as I became Ruralympics convener. Some may consider this as not having much experience in SWI proceedings but along with a lot of experience in other voluntary organisations and a willingness to learn and seek advice from more experienced SWI members (which I always find is willingly offered) I have always found a solution to any situation I was struggling with.   In my opinion that is the ethos that should pervade all levels of our organisation. If I can help to maintain Fun, Friendship and Service as core to our Executive committee I would be honoured to do so.