Hawera has the oldest branch of Rural Women New Zealand and celebrated its 90th birthday with a big party in early July.
Club president Nancy Riddick wrote that 90 years ago the branch’s first president, Florence Carter, stood on Patterson’s Corner, in the main street of Hawera, with a piece of paper and pencil, and asked for 2 shillings and sixpence from women who passed by to become members of the Women’s Division of the Farmers Union, as it was then known.
In the early years rural women carried out considerable charitable work. During the depression a large amount of clothing was collected and given to needy families.
In 1931 the Hawera branch made valuable contribution to those affected by the Napier earthquake with truck loads of cheese, butter, eggs, bacon and numerous other foods, clothing and medical supplies.
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