Once again, SI Bridgend participated in the Bridgend Christmas Tree Festival at Nolton Church. Members took the opportunity to spread the message about Modern Day Slavery and Human Trafficking. Madeline Moon MP congratulated the club on their creativity and on their tenacity in continuing to create awareness of these subjects and to alert local people to be on the look out for victims here in the Bridgend area.
2015 Brownies Got Talent – Bridgend and Porthcawl In the last 2 months Brownies across Bridgend and Porthcawl have taken part in heats for the competition at unit, district and division level. 98 girls from 6 Brownie groups took part and had a lot of fun along the way. Each of the girls performed in front of an audience, with acts as diverse as singing and dancing, playing an instrument, hoola hooping, doing magic, dog obedience and even whistling. 11 girls in 8 acts took part in the Grand Final, in front of an audience of around 100 people and competed for the grand trophy. This is the second time the competition has been organised. Sponsored by SI Bridgend, it aims to encourage girls between 7 and 10 years of age to ‘have a go’, to demonstrate and develop their talent and to build confidence.
Three members of SI Bridgend travelled to Glasgow for the 81st Federation Conference. Keynote speakers included Jo Fairley, co-founder of Green & Black organic chocolate, Dame Stella Rimington, Director General of the Security Services (MI5) from 1992 to 1996 and Sarah Montague, BBC broadcaster and presenter. They were joined by HRH The Princess Royal who commended Soroptimists on their work across the world and particularly in the aftermath of the Nepal earthquake. It was also fascinating to hear of the Programme Action work being done by members and Clubs across the Federation – all living up to the conference theme “Delivering the Difference”. A very stimulating, interesting and fun few days.
SI Bridgend hosted a coffee morning on Anti-Slavery Day, 17 October 2015, to raise awareness of Human Trafficking on our doorstep in South Wales. The event attracted a large and influential audience, including Wales’ First Minister, Carwyn Jones AM. President Bethan introduced the three guest speakers who generated a great deal of interest and discussion: Nici Evans from the Cardiff Partnership Board who spoke on “Human Exploitation…..surely not in Wales?” Stephen Chapman, Anti-Slavery Coordinator for the Welsh Government who spoke on “Working in Partnership to make Wales hostile to slavery” and DS Paul Griffiths, Senior Investigating Officer for Operation Imperial who spoke in “Investigating Slavery: a brief overview of Operation Imperial”. A very interesting and thought-provoking morning that achieved its aims of raising awareness – and raised a generous donation to Barnardos. Many thanks to everyone involved.
Club member Rayner Rees accepted the Regional Programme Action Award for Enablement on behalf of the Club at the SI Wales South Regional meeting at the beginning of this month. The Award was presented for our work supporting the Solar Panel Project with SI Karachi in Pakistan.
Six members of SI Bridgend journeyed to Finland earlier this month to help our friendship link SI Uusikaupunki celebrate their 60th anniversary. “We received a very warm welcome,” explains Club member Carys Brown, “being hosted by our Finnish friends ion a luxurious log cabin. The following article appeared in the local press – it explains all about Soroptimist International, talks about our student project, our stay in Finland and mentions the continuing friendship between us, following their visit to our 60th anniversary celebrations a few years ago.”
The club was delighted and proud to learn that on Tuesday 14th July Eurwen Richards has become a Fellow of the University of Aberystwyth. A truly deserved honour indeed!
Members and friends of SI Bridgend enjoyed the sunshine at Hay-on-Wye with a fascinating day at the the 2015 Hay Festival. Now, I wonder what they are reading!
Members of SI Bridgend are knitting (and crocheting) squares to make baby blankets for the charity ‘Life for African Mothers’, a maternal health charity aiming to make birth safer in sub Saharan Africa, Members were moved to take action after Angela Gorman, Chief Executive Officer and co-founder of the charity, spoke at a recent Club meeting. Club President Bethan Healey says, “Angela was an inspirational speaker and members were very moved by the work the charity does. This is one way we can all get involved and make a difference. Watch this space for the results of our knitting!”
Several members enjoyed the sun and friendship at the Lions Spring Fayre in Cowbridge. The Club’s Tombola stall once again drew a crowd of visitors.