Duncan’s Denise Code is Rural Woman of the Year

Historic Vimy Hall was the site of the ceremony for the Women’s Institute Rural Woman of the Year Award to Denise Code of Duncan.

Ruth Fenner Special to the Citizen

Historic Vimy Hall was the site of the Oct. 14 ceremony for the presentation of the South Vancouver Island District Women’s Institute Rural Woman of the Year Award to Denise Code of Duncan.

Denise and her husband Bill operate one of the largest market gardens in the Cowichan Valley and are well known throughout Vancouver Island. Their market gardening enterprise operates from May until Thanksgiving and Denise is a very active participant in the business, through marketing, bookkeeping and the growing cycle. In addition to her work on the farm, Denise finds time to assist the produce manager of the Community Farm Store, offering counsel on the selection and packaging of top quality produce.

Denise has served as a dietitian in the South Vancouver Island area, worked with 4-H groups, and is a member of the Somenos Women’s Institute. The Codes are well known for their efforts on behalf of agriculture and for their concern and activities in the health field, through speaking engagements and the preparation of health related materials for public distribution. As of March 2015, Denise is on the Organic Certification Committee of the Island Producers Association which helps to maintain standards among the 59 members on Vancouver Island.

Denise is one of those community-minded citizens who make every effort possible to help their fellow citizens by using their expertise in all cases for the betterment of their locale.

The Associated Country Women of the World (ACWW), the international arm of the Women’s Institute, in a statement to mark Oct. 15, the official Day of Rural Women, commented, “Over the past 68 years, we (ACWW) have brought rural women’s issues to the United Nations in the areas of economic development, empowerment, education, health, domestic violence, human rights and social support. According to UN Women, women comprise on average 43 per cent of the agriculture labour force, but comprise less than 20 per cent of land ownership and are responsible for 85-90 per cent of household food preparation.”

Following the presentation made by Donna Jack, president of the South Vancouver Island District Women’s Institute, and Jan Hardie, president of Somenos Women’s Institute, Denise and Bill Code, along with all the others present joined together for a “grown in the Cowichan Valley” luncheon.

Our sincere congratulations to Denise on her many achievements!