International Home Economics Conference celebrates with 20th Anniversary of Year of the Family

News Release
July 16, 2014

London, ON – Organizers of the bi-annual meeting of the International Federation for Home Economics (IFHE) want people to know that the study of Home Economics is alive and well. In fact, 200 women and men will congregate at Brescia University College from July 20-24 to discuss the health of the profession in lively discussions and presentations and to hear a well-known key-note speaker.

Shirley Jones and Joanne Mackie, Co-chairs of the IFHE Council Organizing Committee 2014, say of their attempt to reshape people’s view of Home Economics, “When people ask me what my profession is, their eyes frequently glaze over when I tell them that I am a Home Economist. Or they tell me that they didn’t know that Home Economists were still around. At the IFHE this year conference delegates will meet in the glorious new Clare Hall at Brescia University College to learn from 60 research presenters at the symposium, attend meetings to decide on the direction of the organization itself, and meet old and new friends. And through their lively dialogue they will be proving the relevancy of Home Economics today.”

This is only the second time that Canada has hosted the IFHE, the first time being the Congress in Ottawa, Ontario in 1976.

This summer’s gathering has special meaning because the theme is “The 20th Anniversary of the Year of the Family.” In 1982, the Canadian delegation to the IFHE Council presented a resolution that IFHE recommend to the United Nations that they designate an International Year of the Family. Ultimately, the UN approved the Resolution and designated 1994 as the International Year of the Family.

Delegates to the meetings will be coming from 26 countries around the world and many of them will take the opportunity to see parts of our country before they return home.

The visiting Home Economists will include practising or retired teachers at the elementary, secondary or tertiary levels; graduate students; dietitians and food scientists; business owners; and family resource, hospitality and institutional managers.

Foods and Nutrition Divisional Chair at Brescia and much-decorated educator, Dr. Alicia Garcia, will bring greetings from Brescia University College to the assembled delegates. Renata Kaczmarska, a spokesperson on family issues for the United Nations Secretariat in New York, will give the opening address.

IFHE, a 106-year-old organization, contributes to the United Nations organizations UN-ECOSOC, UNESCO, FAO, UNICEF, and to the Council of Europe.


For more information please contact Colleen Aguilar, Communications, Marketing & External Relations Officer at 519.432.8353, ext. 28280 or at You may also contact Sheila Blagrave, Director Communications, Marketing & External Relations at 519-432-8353, ext. 28293 or at Brescia University College, Canada’s only women’s university college, is affiliated with Western University. The 1,275 women registered as either full- or part-time students at Brescia study a wide variety of subjects in Arts, Social Sciences, and Foods & Nutrition in an empowering, compassionate, student-centred, and invigorating environment. Degrees are granted by Western. The Catholic College welcomes students from all backgrounds and values diversity. For more current and archived news, a listing of faculty experts, and photos please visit our Online Media Room at