Women's Groups 2013 - Country Women’s Association (CWA)

Country Women’s Association (CWA)

Purpose of the group

The Country Women’s Association is a non-party political, non-sectarian and not-for-profit organisation. The CWA’s aim has remained the same since it began: to improve the wellbeing of all people, especially those in country areas, by promoting courtesy, cooperation, community effort, ethical standards and wise resource use. It was formed to meet the needs of the time—to help women in isolated rural communities and provide a voice to government, seeking solutions to difficulties faced by families in those areas.

When the CWA was first established in Western Australia, its first goal was to provide travelling dental clinics and maternity wards in country hospitals. The first CWA restroom opened in 1925. Rest rooms provided a home for the branch and were used for many activities. Particularly in small communities, rest rooms became a hub with many still used today.

The CWA motto is:
Honour to God,
Loyalty to the throne and Empire,
Service to the country through
Country women, for country women,
By country women.

Time period

The CWA originated in Canada in 1897. In October 1923, the National Council of Women in Western Australia called a meeting of interested country women at the Karrakatta Club. The first West Australian CWA branch was established at Nungarin in 1924, followed by other early branches such as Bolgart Metropolitan and Benjaberring.

Key achievements

The first CWA conference in WA was convened in March 1925. The first CWA holiday home was established at Cottesloe in 1929 with many more built since.

The CWA cookery book is renowned for its recipes and household tips. First published in 1936, it is still available from the CWA along with a range of other merchandise.

CWA hostels were established in 1939 to provide accommodation for country students to attend high schools. Bursaries for secondary students have been provided by CWA since 1992.

Holiday homes and retirement units are managed by local branches and provide accommodation for rent by members or non-members.

Key people and positions in the group

  • Lady Campion—first patroness of CWA of WA.
  • Mrs Craven-Griffiths—first state president.
  • Mrs Beryl Fisher—second state president.
  • Other presidents—Mrs Burt, Mrs Hearman, Mrs Craig, Mrs Williams and Mrs Dempster.
  • Treasurers—Mrs Niblock, Mrs Kinsella and Mrs Frost.


  • Website: http://www.cwaofwa.asn.au/history.html
  • Country Women’s Association. Silver years in the Golden West: 1924–1949. State Library of WA (call number 366.009 SIL).

Article Index
Women's Groups 2013
Abortion Law Repeal Association/Association for the Legal Right to Abortion (ALRA)
American Women's Club of Perth (AWC)
Association of Civilian Widows of WA Inc
Australian College of Midwives WA Branch (ACM)
Australian Local Government Women’s Association (ALGWA)
Beta Sigma Phi
Business and Professional Women Western Australia (BPW)
Catholic Women’s League of Western Australia (Inc)
Chrysalis House Women's Refuge
Cine-Matrix: Women in Film and Television WA
Cockburn Women’s Peace Camp
Combined Equal Pay Committee/WA Council for Equal Pay and Opportunity
Community Midwifery WA
Country Women’s Association (CWA)
Domestic Violence Action Group (Geraldton)
Emily’s List
Equal Opportunity Law Reform Coalition
Fremantle Women’s Health Centre (FWHC)
Girl Guides WA
Graduate Women Western Australia (GWWA)/Australian Federation of University Women (AFUW) Western Australia
Grapevine/Perth Wimmin’s Collective
Gretel Club of Perth (Inc)
Harvest Guild
Incest Survivors Association (Inc.)
Inner Wheel Australia
Inside Out Project
Ishar Multicultural Women’s Health Centre
Kalgoorlie Auxiliary of the Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy
Karrakatta Club
Labor Women’s Association
Lespar Library
Living Child Inc.—Safe Village Births
Lutheran Women WA
Marninwarntikura Fitzroy Women’s Resource Centre
Mining Mums
Modern Women's Club
Mothers’ Union Australia
Movement for the Ordination of Women
Muslim Women’s Support Centre of WA (Inc)
National Council of Women of Western Australia (previously known as West Australian National Council of Women and Western Australian National Council of Women)
National Council of Jewish Women of Australia—WA section (NCJWA)
Nintirri Centre
Older Women’s Network (OWN WA)
Penguin Club
Perth Ionian Club
Polyhymnia Reading Group
Rape Crisis Line
Rural Remote Regional Women’s Network (RRR)
Sexual Assault Resource Centre (SARC)
Sibyl/University of Western Australia Student Guild Women’s Collective
Society of Women Writers WA
Soroptimist International of Western Australia
Starick Services Inc
Status of Women Committee WA—Australian Labor Party
Tradeswomen on the Move
UN Women Australia (formerly UNIFEM Australia)—Perth Chapter Young UN Women Perth Chapter
Union of Australian Women—WA Branch
V.I.E.W. Western Australia
West Australian Women’s Society of Fine Arts and Crafts
War Widows’ Guild
Warrawee Women’s Refuge
Women’s Electoral Lobby (WEL)
West Australian Housewives’ Association (Inc)
Women’s International League for Peace and Freedom (WILPF)
Women in Media
Women’s Information Referral Exchange (WIRE)
Woman’s Christian Temperance Union (WCTU) of Western Australia
Women in Education Coalition
Women in Mining WA (WIMWA)
Women in Sailing (WIS)
Women in Sport Committee of the Western Australian Sports Council
Women in Technology WA (Inc) (WiTWA)
Women Lawyers of Western Australia (Inc) (WLWA)
Women with Disabilities WA Inc (WWDWA)
Women’s Action Alliance (WAA)
Women’s Advisory Council (WAC)
Women’s Broadcasting Cooperative
Women’s Committee of State School Teachers’ Union WA Executive
Women's Committee of the Waterside Workers Federation
Women’s Council for Domestic and Family Violence Services (WA)/Women’s Refuge Group of WA (WRG)
Women’s Health and Family Services/Women’s Health Care House/Perth Women’s Centre/Women’s Health Service
Women’s Information Service (WIS)
Women’s Interest Network
Women in Engineering WA (WIE WA)
Women’s International Zionist Organisation (WIZO)
Women’s Liberation
Women’s Service Guilds
Women’s Studies Group
Yanay Yanma
YWCA of Perth
Zonta International
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