On Friday August 25th 2023 SI Bournemouth dipped its toes into the world of Orange Cafés for the first time. SIB member Lisa Maw had developed a relationship with Dot, the manager of the Well Coffee Lounge who was happy for us to come along wearing orange, willing to talk to customers about the issues to do with violence against women and girls. The Well Coffee Lounge was set up by a local charity, Safe and Sound Dorset, to be a hub in the centre of Boscombe to bring together the community who have a mutual love for good quality coffee. It’s also there to help provide the charity with a means to directly finance its prime aims and objectives which are to help women who are isolated or at risk in the community. The charity has been running for just over six years in providing weekly creative sessions, street outreach, wellbeing sessions and other events that benefit this valued part of the community.
Dot decorated the windows with orange and three Soroptimists (two from SI Bournemouth and one from SI Poole) gathered at 10.30 to engage with coffee drinkers who might want to know more about the UN campaign to reduce gender-based violence. The orange stiletto heels on their table engendered interest and they were able to share information about the initiative and Soroptimism. It was a good start, and we are working to identify more cafés across Bournemouth, Christchurch, and Poole to get the word out more widely working with our colleagues in Poole. We are also working with the Community Safety Team at BCP Council to splash orange around the conurbation through the 16 days of activism in November/ December. Watch this space!
If you are interested in this and would like to come along to a Soroptimist International Bournemouth meeting to find out more, please email us at email@example.com.