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Region Programme Action Officer’s Report

Regional Programme Action Report – June Meeting 2021

With the easing of lockdown restrictions on the horizon and an efficient vaccination programme we are seeing a light at the end of the tunnel.  We can hopefully look forward to meeting up face to face in the not too distant future.

Whether clubs have been meeting via Zoom or not over the past 12 months they have been involved in an amazing range of projects from making COVID masks, knitting for the elderly, hospital bags for patients, story sacks for schools, continually supporting Women’s Refuge Centres and goodie bags for NHS staff to providing food for the homeless, helping at food banks, delivering necessities to the elderly and families in need….and much more.

Tomorrow Women’s Wirral Centre has continued to provide support and advice for vulnerable women and developed a much needed delivery service.  The two projects developed by a member of SI Ellesmere Port – The Port Grocery and Flynn’s Port in the Storm Crisis Cafe continue to provide a valuable service which was identified early on in the pandemic as featured in the January report.

Clubs are also continuing to raise funds for their chosen charities and Women’s Centres etc.  Whichever way clubs communicate the number of projects delivered and value of your PA work is exceptional. Over the past 3 months 49 programme focus reports have been submitted with funds raised totalling £5,012 and 449 beneficiaries.  UKPAC chair recently stressed the importance of including the number of beneficiaries in PFR’s as it is an essential requirement when submitting reports to the UN.

The range and quality of projects confirm that we have many talented members in our region a number of which have already received recognition, and rightly so, in the #WhoIsShe SIGBI Centenary campaign namely:  SI Anne MacDonald OBE, SI Chester; Maureen Thompson, SI Heswall & District; Janet Jones OBE, SI Runcorn, Frodsham & District; Dorothy Cheesley; SI Bebington; Dorothy Cartwright and Rita Lewis, SI Ellesmere Port.

  • International Women’s Day – March 8th – the theme this year was the ChooseToChallenge highlighting missions to help forge a gender equal world and celebrating women’s achievements. Several clubs embraced the challenge by inviting guest speakers, members to give a talk about their experiences and achievements including women who had inspired them in their personal life, education or profession.   Regional President Louise was invited to give a presentation at an SI Wales South event and she gave an excellent talk about women in the law profession leading on to women’s empowerment worldwide.  The ‘While the World is Distracted’ video was widely distributed and SI Birkenhead sang along with the Helen Reddy video on Zoom….shame they didn’t record it!
  • Domestic Violence – Several clubs responded to the very late requested to send a letter to the Secretary of State for Justice regarding the amendments to the Domestic Abuse Bill in the House of Lords. A message was received by UKPAC from Dame Vera Baird thanking clubs for their support.  Further action is being requested prior to the Bill going to the House of Commons.
  • Modern Slavery: The North Wales Anti Slavery Working group with representatives from Cheshire and Wirral clubs has met on a regular basis and 2 speakers from NW Police Criminal Exploitation unit attended a recent meeting.   The Holyhead Port Border Control Officer has also been invited to speak at a future meeting.  Caroline Adams of SI Llandudno’s continued persistence is gaining recognition and action, albeit slowly and SI Anglesey have successfully lobbied their politicians. Letters are being sent to Welsh Government election candidates plus candidates for the position of Police Crime Commissioner.
  • Climate Change – A request has been received from for Clubs to focus on projects associated with climate change and the environment for submission at the next UKPAC meeting in July. The proposal is to develop a display for an exhibition stand at the COP26 Summit in Glasgow (if approved) in October if it goes ahead as planned.

SIGBI Centenary Year 2021: The Tree Planting Projectis designed to energise Soroptimist across the Federation to ‘Plant Trees for a Brilliant Future’#PlantTrees – As previously reported a number of clubs have already planted trees to celebrate our Centenary Year and others are at the planning stage.  A regional tree planting event is planned to take place in Llandudno and final details will be announced at the Regional Meeting in June.  If clubs are unable to plant trees see information below on how you can still be involved.

Virtual event: UKPAC Study Day – Saturday 17th April: www.sigbi.org and click on UKPAC Study Day leaflet

 Special dates for information and or action in the hope that we will be able to meet if only ‘at a distance’ by early summer or otherwise via Zoom

 

Esther Roberts & Gillie O’Rourke