BWC was founded in 1908 by Margaret Ogg, an extraordinary woman with a passion to improve the lives of Queensland women. Operating continuously for more than 109 years, from its inception BWC has had a strong social justice purpose. BWC was a key fundraiser and driver of the establishment of Women’s College at UQ, actively campaigned for the pension and support for single mothers and today it financially supports a range of organisations, projects and activities aimed at empowering, educating and enabling Queensland women to achieve their potential.
Since its inception in 1908, BWC has played a significant leadership role in:
- advocating for the right of Qld women to vote and to stand for election to the Queensland parliament
- the formation of the Country Women’s Association (CWA) in Qld and the Bush Children’s Association and Kindergarten & Crèche Association
- the creation of Women’s College at The University of Queensland and provision of scholarships for in-need women university students
- the creation of the Women’s War Memorials (both WWI and WWII), plus a host of other cultural and artistic investments that have contributed to Qld women’s lives
- Brisbane City Council innovations, including the numbering of bus stops, and funding for scholarships (Warana, and other writing and music support)
- funding for annual Conservatorium/QUT music scholarship
- funding or resource provision in response to war-time efforts or natural disasters
- fundraising for women experiencing domestic violence
- funding for women’s health research projects
In the past, BWC has provided grants to a diverse range of Qld organisations. The grant recipient for 2018 was Suited to Success, an organization that carried out research into barriers woman face in gaining employment, developed a module on building self-esteem and supported a number of women to gain employment. Other recent grant recipients include Yalari Indigenous Scholarships, Women’s Legal service, Friends with Dignity and ovarian cancer research.