Study and Interest Groups
|Welcome to the CFUW-Ottawa Study & Interest Groups! Registered members are welcome to join the groups below or those listed under Service Groups and Club Projects. Contact the group convenors by logging into the web page at the top right of this page. Once logged in, select Member-only from the contents list on the left hand side and look for Study & Interest Group Convenors.
Browse the monthly schedule of activities.
If you have questions contact the Study & Interest Group convenor at firstname.lastname@example.org
National Gallery Study Group (Fee)
From October to April, tours of the National Gallery will be held on the last Wednesday at 11:00 a.m. Friends of the Gallery - $30, non-friends- $50.
Last Wednesday, 11:00 a.m.
Alternating Third and Fourth Thursday, 1:00 - 3:00 p.m.
This group meets to learn about a broad range of Canadian topics from antiques to art, from social history to contemporary issues. Like the topics, the format varies but usually it includes a guest speaker or an interactive project lead by a member of the group, followed by tea and discussion.
3rd Monday, 1:00 to 3:30 p.m.
This is a Couples' dinner group that meets for dinner at members' homes seven times a year, usually on the third Saturday of the month. There are five different dinner groups, which rotate, so that everyone dines with most other people. The hostesses decide on the menu and assign the recipes. All expenses are shared equally.The season begins with a Cocktail Party and ends with a BBQ. The group has a list of "spare" couples who fill in for others when needed. A wonderful group!
3rd Saturday, evening
This group combines lively conversation with dining out at Ottawa area restaurants. Reservations are arranged by rotating members of the group. We try out new and trendy restaurants as well as old favourites.3rd Wednesday, evening 6:30 p.m.
The Supper Club is a casual dining experience organized by rotating members of the group. Meet new people and enjoy good conversation.
4th Wednesday at supper time, 6:30 p.m.
Easy Gourmet (Fee)
Come share new and fun ideas for easily prepared memorable menus. Be stimulated gustatorily and conversationally by joining Easy Gourmet. (maximum 16)1st Wednesday, evening
International Cuisine (Fee)
From October to June we meet at a variety of area restaurants, often with an international flavour. We endeavour to keep the cost reasonable. It is a good way to meet people and talk over the affairs of the day. It is also a chance to try different restaurants.
Sunday Brunch1st Sunday, 11:30 a.m.
CFUW Brunch Group On the 1st Sunday of the month from October to June (excluding December) a very social group of CFUW members meet to chat and try out the brunch at local restaurants both new and old favourites. Reservations are arranged by the convenor or by members of the group. We meet at 11:30 a.m. and depending on whether it is a buffet or a served meal, we usually finish by 1:30 to 2:00.
Economic Realities for Women
Topics of economic concern to women are discussed. In previous years we included accessible "downsize" dwellings, credit card deception and the caregiver-tax rebate. This is not a group about investments!
The Environmental Toxins and Health Study Group researches and discusses scientific articles on chemicals in the environment that are reportedly detrimental to health.
Selection of topics is guided by members’ interests and current environmental concerns. The Group has broadened its early interest in household and personal care products, and is now exploring how some practices of the food industry may be contributing to undermining the nation’s health. In addition, the Group is examining the effect of climate change on human, animal and environmental health. Meetings of the Group are held in members’ homes at 10 a.m. on the first Thursday of the month.
Gatineau Trails - Year-round Outdoor Activities
The Gatineau Trails group offers members seasonal activities: hiking in the fall, cross-country skiing in the winter, and biking in the summer. In the shoulder seasons members enjoy urban walking in various Ottawa neighbourhoods. Members join in some or all of the activities depending upon their interests.
The Gatineau hills have sections of rugged terrain for hiking and some challenging hills while skiing. Whenever possible we try to offer options for those who wish a less strenuous outing.
Communication of activities and special events is done via email. Generally for hiking and skiing we meet at a designated Gatineau Park parking lot, while for cycling we meet at various locations around the City of Ottawa (for skiing some members choose to meet at the Visitors Centre in Chelsea). The normal meeting time is weekly on Tuesday mornings at 9:45 am for a 10:00 am departure from the designated parking lot. Usually we eat a packed lunch together and return to the City around 2:00 pm.
Our special events may include: occasional pot luck lunches, overnight stay at a cabin in Gatineau Park, a moon light ski, bicycle maintenance / safety clinics, a three to four day bicycle trip, and other events that members may decide to organize.
There is a $7.00 fee to cover a range of expenses associated with running the Group; and members are responsible for their own Gatineau Park ski pass fees.
New members are always welcome to join us as we stay fit with our outdoor play.
We are a very small informal group of about 20 to 25 members who meet one morning a week to ski at Camp Fortune. Although we usually meet on a Friday I encourage everyone to use the email list to ask if any one wants to meet on another day. Our group includes intermediate to expert skiers and is committed to a healthy use of winter and good conversation on the lift.
Members use both traditional and modern snowshoes. No special skills are required and new members are welcome. We use NCC trails throughout the Ottawa region, with outings of about 1 hour led by various members of the group.
Weekly, Mondays 11am, January - mid-March (alternate day due to weather may be determined as required)
Weekend outings rotating on trails in Nepean, Gloucester, Kanata & Ottawa lasting 1 - 1.5 hours. All levels welcome.
Saturdays or Sundays to be decided by the group when the snow flies.
Walking, Trail (Hiking)
The Trail Walking Group meets Mondays at 11 a.m. It is an opportunity to explore a variety of trails in the Gatineau and in the city with friendly people who enjoy being outdoors. Do come and join us. (Bring lunch/snack)
Weekly, Mondays 11:00 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. (approx.) during the fall and spring months
Graduate Women International (GWI), our international arm, advocates for women's education and empowerment around the world. Focus on GWI is a new group in 2016, so members will have a chance to design the group's activities. The initial plan is for members to work toward understanding the scope of GWI's work on our behalf. We envisage that at each meeting, one or more members will present some aspect of GWI's advocacy or projects within the context of the international situation surrounding it, and then lead a discussion. Over time, we aim to know the details of our international work through GWI, and when we are ready, to present this knowledge to CFUW-Ottawa through the Carillon, on this website, or at general meetings.
Full report on meetings held online with GWI UN representatives: click here
To watch a video of a Flashmob initiated by one of our GWI representatives as a side event to the International Day of the Girl Child 2016 in Geneva, click here: http://www.ngocsw-geneva.ch/international-day-of-the-girl-2016-flashmob-dance/
In March 2017 Hally Siddons attended the Commission on the Status of Women 61, United Nations, New York March 13-24, 2017. To see her full report click here.
Members will meet in the home of a member on the first Tuesday evening of the month from October to June (except January).
Non-duplicate - Regular
Non-duplicate - MondaysMah-Jong
The game of Mah-Jong has evolved from the original Chinese form and has been adapted to various cultures. It is a challenging, engrossing, fast moving, mentally stimulating game. It requires a versatile mind to complete a hand with the highest score. There is no universal game, but once the basic procedure is understood, players find no difficulty in adapting their game to another country's version.
Mah-Jong sets consist of 144 colourfully designed tiles of ivory, bone or plastic. The ideal configuration is four players per square table. The four players can set their own time limits and predetermined rules. This allows for opportunities to increase the complexities of the game at ones own pace. The expert can play with advanced rules; the newly initiated can have their own simple version and add on new rules gradually as they become more proficient. Since it is a social game, one can freely exchange small talk and enjoy each others company.Tuesdays, 1:00 p.m.
ScrabbleThe Scrabble group meets the second and third Wednesdays at St. Timothy's Church. Members bring a bag lunch; we make tea and play two players to a board, trying to match levels of play. Sometimes we play cooperative games to improve our skills. This is fun for everyone.We provide the American Scrabble Dictionary and the British International Dictionary.
2nd and 3rd Wednesdays, 11:15 a.m.
Every year, the History Study Group chooses to study a particular theme centered on a series of events or people selected from different historical periods and/or different cultural and geopolitical environments. Each season, the highly motivated members of the group undertake to research and present - using printed and audiovisual material – some fourteen different subjects drawn from the vast history of humankind. The meetings are held at the Richelieu-Vanier Community Centre, 300 rue Des Pères Blancs, Vanier.1st Thursday, October to May (except December), 7 - 9:30 p.m.
Tea, Tales and Treasures
We meet in a member's home on the fourth Thursday of the month from 1:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m. Each member brings a treasure or tale to share. We have a delightful time looking at and talking about the treasures or listening to and discussing the tales. Following the presentations afternoon tea is provided by our host and co-host.
4th Thursday, 1:30 - 4:00 p.m.
Literature Study Groups (See list of books for 2016-17 after the last group)
The group meets in members' homes, with an average attendance of 15. A general theme is chosen at the beginning of the year (eg. The Sound of a Country, or the Romantic Movement in Western Music). Members sign up to make presentations from October - May (except January) on topics relevant to the overall theme (eg. The Music of Newfoundland, Schubert's Songs, or the Argentinian Tango). Presentations are typically illustrated with videos, YouTube clips and CDs, all of which make for lively and informative sessions. We welcome new members and new ideas for enhancing the enjoyment of music in all forms.
1st Tuesday evening, 7.30 p.m.
Summer Social Group
The group meets and plans a variety of activities from May - August. Frequency and content of activities are decided by the members. Events may include a book club, theatre or film outings, walks, hikes and coffee/tea dates.
Various days and times May - August.
Exlporing Retirement Communities
The purpose of the group is to investigate and explore various retirement homes in and around the Ottawa area, find out what each offers and learn the costs involved. Each outing will include a tour of the facility, an opportunity to ask questions and lunch.
UNIVERSITY WOMEN HELPING AFGHAN WOMEN (UWHAW) Study and Interest group was created by members deeply affected by the message Dr. Sima Samar delivered about the plight of Afghan women at the 2010 AGM in Ottawa. Dr. Samar, Chairperson of the Afghanistan Independent Human Rights Commission, spoke of their strength, the fragility of their basic human rights and freedoms, and the need for the continuing support of the international community. With the withdrawal of the international forces in 2014 and the resulting change in media focus, our support for these women is more critical than ever.
The focus of UWHAW is learning, advocacy and support. We continue to educate ourselves and others about the issues faced by Afghan women and girls, advocate for the protection of their human rights and freedoms, support their education in various ways, and try to counter the cynicism and misinformation on the subject that pervades.Our Study Group activities include monthly guest speakers from government, universities, Global Affairs Canada, NGO's working in Afghanistan, the Embassy of Afghanistan and young Afghans, and the military. We have truly interesting sessions with good discussion to follow.
In addition to our ongoing study, we are involved in many other activities that identify us also as an External Outreach Group (See External Outreach). Some members write letters to newspapers and political leaders when appropriate. Others raise awareness as they can, locally, nationally and internationally and through social media (UWHAW Facebook and Twitter). Together we fundraise and host social events to provide scholarships for young Afghan women to attend The Gawharshad Institute of Higher Education a university founded by Dr. Samar in Kabul. There is now an opportunity for members to link up in the CFUW National Afghanistan Study Group, and internationally doors have been opened to us through GWI (formerly IFUW) who has already posted us on its website http://www.graduatewomen.org/what-we-do/projects/, giving us further legs as we possibly work with other NFAs who can complement our efforts.
Going into its sixth year now UWHAW through CFUW National was instrumental in getting the story of Afghan women on the GWI (IFUW) Triennial agenda in Istanbul in August 2013. It also started the process and continues to support the development of an Afghan graduate women’s affiliate of Graduate Women International. In 2014 UWHAW presented a Parallel Session at the United Nations Commission on the Status of Women in New York City. We have spoken at neighbouring clubs, the WG-USA AGM in Salt Lake City, and the CFUW AGM in Quebec City and American Association of University Women in Connecticut. The Hon. Chris Alexander spoke of UWHAW as one of the most continuous and selfless supporters of Afghan women and encouraged us to “stay the course”. Sally Armstrong said we should be proud of our work and achievements and they are making a difference. We continue to work closely with Canada’s Ambassador to Afghanistan, Deborah Lyons, who appreciates the focus UWHAW puts on Afghanistan, saying that it helps not only the Afghans but it strengthens her work.
1st Thursday, 1:00-3:00 p.m. Venue: A member’s home or as announced
The group meets to hear and critique the written work of one or two members each time. We give each other information on various readings, workshops and organizations (e.g. Canadian Authors' Association) for writers.
Last Wednesday of the Month
Monthly schedule of CFUW Ottawa Groups