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Who we are, why we do what we do


The General Federation of Women's Clubs (GFWC) was founded in 1890 by Jane Cunningham Croly, a British-born journalist who was quite progressive for her day. She spent much of her time organizing venues where women could meet, learn, and discuss issues surrounding their roles in society. In 1869, she and other female journalists were not allowed to attend an event in New York City featuring Charles Dickens. This event lead Croly to form

"Sorosis", a club which she deemed a "center of unity". In 1890, she formed GFWC to support

clubs which were forming across the country and assist in their endeavors to promote education,

improved working conditions, health care, and scholarships, among other reforms.

GFWC West Virginia was founded in 1904 has continued working to improve the lives of not

only women, but everyone who lives and works in Mountain State communities. The 64 clubs

that make up GFWC West Virginia strive to strengthen communities both large and small so our

state, as a whole, is the best it can be. The women who compromise these clubs live by the motto

"Unity in Diversity" and prove daily that it is our differences that make us stronger because the

knowledge derived from these differences makes for better, more well-rounded people who

can invoke sustainable, meaningful progress that is beneficial to society as a whole.

Jane Cunningham Croly

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