Although most of our meetings have been on ZOOM, we have succeeded in projects that have fulfilled our Soroptimist aims of supporting women and girls locally, nationally and internationally. Each of our groups should be congratulated on the events and projects they have led a coordinated. This report is a brief look at what we have achieved in 2021 – 2022.
Supporting Women’s Aid through Llamau
- Provided pamper bags for the women in the refuge.
- Provided selection boxes for the children in the refuge.
- Raised £300 to be shared with Llamau and Rachel Williams – Victims of Domestic Abuse.
- Sharon has continued support with Rebecca from Llamau to find out how we can help.
- Rayner and Sharon met with Rebecca and identified areas the members can help with.
- Sharon has recently met with Rebecca and they are hoping to set up the support groups after Easter.
- Our aim is to help the women to integrate smoothly back into society when they do finally leave the refuge.
- Give them the opportunity to start again feeling confident and competent in many areas.
Sharon Dixon is the lead on this project and has been successful in forming a strong partnership with Bridgend Rotary club by talking to the club about how we have helped and supported Llamau. This resulted in Bridgend Rotary donating £500 to Llamau and four of our members attending their International evening.
Victims of domestic abuse
Talk by Rachel Williams on her experiences as a victim of domestic abuse and her campaign to the Welsh Govt for more legislation to support victims.
- A donation to Stand Up To Domestic Abuse (SUTDA), the charity that Rachel founded
- Funding support to SUTDA to help develop the campaign with Welsh Government
Empowering Girls in Nepal – through Pipal Tree
- £500 to support Empowering Girls in Nepal
- Further funding of £500 to specifically support the project developing employment opportunities for girls now run by Lily’s Leaves through Pipal Tree
- Rayner Rees is a Trustee for Pipal Tree and supports the charity with making and selling craft items
- The charity was successful in raising £100,000, which will support both Lily’s leaves and the reforestation project in South Nepal
- Pipal Tree supports disadvantaged women and girls who have no access to education and is exploring further avenues to help with this. A school has been set up in leper colony to support the children. There are also projects supporting reforestation, building and setting up a school in South Nepal. President Gaynor is interested in finding out how we can support this project and Philip Holmes, Pipal Tree CEO, will give us some options when he speaks to the club in June 2022.
- Rayner has a received some beautiful silver jewellery made by the girls in Lily’s Leaves, which is to be sold to Bridgend Soroptimists with all funds going back to the charity
- The funding supports Lily’s Leaves, social enterprise in Kathmandu to continue training girls in sewing and jewellery making. This gives the girls skills to support themselves and their families when they return home. Lily brings the girls from South Nepal who are considered untouchable to Kathmandu where they stay for 6 months to become skilled in a trade.
Bridgend Young Carers
- A speaker from Bridgend Young Carers, Victoria Bailey, explained how support is given. This includes a variety of activities, trips and summer activities. The young carers are in need of support as they can feel lonely and isolated. The activities are made to be as much fun as possible allowing the young carers’ time to be children. The charity receives some funding from the Welsh Government and members asked how we could support them. Our aim is to raise funds to support many of the activities through our …
- Fashion Show and Afternoon Tea: Both of these were very successful and raised over £1000 for charity. The events were enjoyed by all who took part with several members acting as fashion models and an auction of donated jewellery. The Maesteg Ukulele band entertained us at the tea.
- Our donation will enable 15 young carers the opportunity to join a summer trip organised by the main charity, Young Carers
Well Being and Mental Health
- As a result of further lockdown restrictions, members of SI Bridgend were invited to join a ZOOM keep fit and wellbeing session organized by our then president, Sharon Dixon. Sharon devised a programme of keep fit exercise designed for the varying levels of fitness and ages of participants. This was followed by a get together chat and a session on mindfulness.
- The sessions were so successful that members from SI Glamorgan and SI Port Talbot joined us and sessions continued face-to-face when restrictions allowed, becoming a regular and valued part of our Soroptimist calendar.
- Continue/restart collections of CDs/DVDs; Ink cartridges; biros and pens; jewellery and coins; bedding and towels; toiletries; items for Tombola and Raffles; and stamps
- Support President Gaynor’s Charity – Rosa Foundation
- Fashion Show in support of Cruse Morgannwg Bereavement Charity
- Continue to support Bridgend Young Carers, Llamau and Pipal Tree
- Support Soroptimist International President Maureen’s Appeal – Opening Doors to a Bright Future
- Raise awareness for International Women’s Day
- Explore opportunities to work with Friendship link Clubs on joint service projects