Inspiring Women Spring 2018


A Club Inspires: AWC Amsterdam

There are FAWCO clubs of all sizes and shapes across the world. A Club Inspires is a feature

where you will learn more about one of them. This time we are pleased to share with you one of

the FAWCO clubs based in Region 4: American Women’s Club of Amsterdam. Over to their

FAWCO Reps Lauren Mescon and Julie Lehr...

The American Women’s Club of Amsterdam (AWCA) was started in 1927 by Carolyn Korthals

Altes. The first meetings were held at the home of the wife of the US Consul General, who was an

early member. While the club was started for social and cultural purposes, they soon began to

get involved in serving the public. The club actually began their own “Marshall Plan” before the

official one started. They would reach out to their friends in the States who would send care

packages full of needed items and the AWCA would distribute the packages. The Americans

back home were so happy to help that this continued for several years until the AWCA actually

had to beg their friends to stop sending them!

We have about 260 members representing a

variety of nationalities. The majority are

Americans but quite a few are not. Many of

our members are here for their husband’s or

partner’s job, although, not exclusively;

many women also came sans partners for

their own careers.

There is an elected board and candidates

are solicited via our nominating committee,

in accordance with club by-laws. We usually

have an amazing slate of officers, with most

positions being filled with co-leaders (i.e. two

people). With the busy schedules of many of

our members as a result of their jobs,

children or travels, they are more comfortable not having sole responsibility for something. The

beauty of our board, though, is that everyone does everything; if someone is missing, even last

minute for unforeseen reasons, the rest of the board does not hesitate to step in.

We have two monthly meetings - a daytime General Meeting (GM) and an evening event the

following week known as At Night. The speakers are different as the At Night meetings tend to

be smaller and attended by members who work during the day. Naturally we also have regular

activities, from book clubs to cooking club to

Pokeno nights to Guys Night Out to pub

nights. There are tons of newcomers’

activities, including a monthly newcomers’

coffee, lunch and a Saturday night cocktail

party. Everyone is welcome and there are

plenty of non-newcomer regulars at each

one. We also have a robust excursions

program which includes day trips and

overnight trips.


The club also fundraises for the FAWCO Target

project. This year we were really excited to

have “Raise Your Hand for Education” events

both for members and a corporation. We

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