(in Britain) any of the local branches of the National Federation of Women's Institutes (itself sometimes referred to as the Women's Institute). This organization was started in 1915 with the aim of improving and developing the lives of women living in country areas. Each branch organizes social, cultural and charity events, and holds meetings where members can learn skills connected with the home, such as cooking. Most small towns and country areas have a Women's Institute. People generally associate the organization with older middle-class women. The film Calendar Girls (2003) was based on a true story about the members of a Women's Institute in Yorkshire.