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Soroptimists Working at Home


Photos of Scrubs and Scrub bags made by members of SI Nantwich & Anglesey clubs.

Soroptimist Members working to provide much needed items to support NHS and Hospitals

SI Nantwich & District members have been making scrubs bags for NHS to wash their uniforms in – they have made 32 so far.

Members are also making face masks which they sell to raise funds for Cheshire Without Abuse,

SI Anglesey members have made scrub bags for the local Hospital

SI Llandudno member Sylvia Chadwick has been making wash bags for nurses. President Janet has taken 22 to Llandudno Hospital already and has another 19. Sylvia has lots of material. Members were asked if others could make bags or masks. As part of this partnership project with Llandudno Hospital Janet Murfin has asked the Matron if there was anything else members could contribute The Matron has used the hospital chapel to make into a quiet room for staff who need a few minutes ‘time out’ and asked if they could supply some treats e.g. sweets, hand cream etc. which the club will  happily supply. Maureen’s craft work group are continuing to make twiddle muffs in isolation. They also have a knitting pattern for a teddy bear in nurse’s uniform which they are planning to make

SI Birkenhead members are making scrub bags and beautiful knitted Compassion Hearts. They are also supporting the Women’s Refuge in these difficult times.

SI South Caernarfonshire members are knitting blankets for SANDS – Stillbirth and Neo-natal death charity

SI Rhyl & District – Members agreed to give ‘Goody bags’ to the nurses in the ICU department in Glan Clwyd Hospital and have supplied 136 Goody Bags  which include sweets, crisps,  drink and some deodorant to take home after a long shift on ICT or to use in their breaks. This action  was co ordinated by Lesley Roberts and supported generously by members.and we have received a thank you from the team and have requested to know if anymore are needed. Some members are making Scrub Bags so that nurses can carry their uniforms home for washing,

See photos below of items made by SI Birkenhead, South Caernarfonshire, Nantwich and Rhyl clubs

SI Bangor & District

The club is supporting the homeless at Pendinas; a hostel in Bangor helping people integrate back into the community – they learn to cook for themselves so many items have been given to help them. We are continuing to donate food to food banks. Also supporting an appeal by Ysbyty Gwynedd for large plastic boxes to be used as lockers for patients at the new temporary Rainbow Hospital at Bangor, and donating gift cards for groceries which have been delivered to the Women’s  Refuge, where there are 3 families at the moment and a fourth family is expected shortly.

Our sewing champs have been busy making bags for nurses’ scrubs at Ysbyty Gwynedd, Bangor.

One of our members has produced beautiful ‘Rainbow’ mugs for sale with ALL proceeds going to the local NHS.

Some members have been busy making ‘face masks’ for people in the community.

SI Ellesmere Port

Club President Hilary Laidler describes her  lockdown activities:

As you all know I design and sell jewellery for the international Presidents’ Appeals and for other causes. At the moment the sales of the current Road to Equality Appeal are continuing, with hundreds still being sent all over the world. During Lockdown I am only visiting the post office once a month, 30 parcels were posted in April and it looks like May will be just as busy. To date about £6000 has been raised for the Appeal this way.

I have also been selling the very last of the available stock of the blue sparkly water brooches. Although the previous Women, Water and Leadership Appeal has ended, I decided to put the funds raised from  these to a water based project so I chose tap-twinning, which provided taps of fresh water in places where none exist and training on hand washing and cleanliness. I am selling other jewellery that I have created towards the Road to Equality Appeal and sourcing brooches and pendants from various places to raise further funds. They are shared on the Soroptimist International Facebook page so look out for them there.


Storytime With SI Ellesmere Port & The Port Grocery

Club member Rita Lewis, director of the Port Grocery, was looking for ways to help children in this lockdown situation. She thought a ‘storytime’ for children unable to attend school and who may not have access to books, would be a good idea.

Our club has recorded many stories which appear on the Port Grocery Facebook page. They are popular with local children and usually get between five hundred and eight hundred views. One story however was very popular and received in excess of 1.2 thousand views, probably not because of the quality of story telling, but because there was mention of knickers and bare bottoms – always a hit with young children! You will see photos below of Heather Duggan recording the stories.

Heather has also been busy during lockdown building up craft supplies for SI Ellesmere Port fund raising, she says: “When we are back to normal these will be on sale at our Region meetings. Start saving now ladies”

SI Anglesey

Latest shipment of goods for care workers from SI Anglesey just been collected and on way to recipients. Many club members have been working hard to provide items for the hospitals and care homes, we have certainly not been idle during lock down.

So far, members have made scrub bags so the nurses at Ysbwty Gwynedd can launder their uniforms without infecting their families. To date they have made 156 uniform bags for frontline workers, 75 shoe bags, 59 phone bags, 137 mask adapters, 26 pairs of knitted hearts for sufferers of the virus and their loved ones, 9 bags of toiletries for inpatients at Ysbyty Gwynedd, 8 bags of books for inpatients at Ysbyty Gwynedd.

Compassion Hearts – A beautiful gift to patient and family, one heart is given to the patient to stay with him/her in hospital – the other heart is given to the family so they can have some part of their loved ones with them at all times

We have also collected toiletries and books for patients who cannot have visitors- a bad time if you are well, a very long day if you are in hospital. We have made 100 face masks for another club in our Region and continued to make mastectomy cushions for the local cancer service.

Barbara Dixon SI Anglesey – Just about to start trimming the “several” Twiddlemuffs I have done whilst in lock down- Alan delivering 30 mastectomy cushions and several shoe bags for nurses uniforms also done whilst at home- have been crafting like mad. Have been in the sewing room all day and made 3 x sets Scrubs for the Hospital – Have now made 13 sets of Scrubs see pics below

SI Heswall & District

During these difficult time our club decided to help the Women’s Refuge by collecting much needed toiletries. Thanks to Iris Batman who proposed this idea and allowed us to use her porch as a drop off point – social distancing was maintained.

SI Birkenhead

Club member Diane Bennett is a trustee and treasurer for the local Women’s Refuge and although not allowed to go to the Refuge, has been providing support and advice to the staff team.

Diane sends regular updates to inform club members about the Refuge – latest update:

The refuge is treated as a family unit so the residents do not have to practice social distancing and have mostly not left the Refuge apart from occassional shopping trips. The staff are working 24hour shifts followed by 6/7 days working from home/rest days in order to reduce the risk of any infection and this is working well. The Refuge is  fortunate to have good outside space after the refurbishment that was completed last year. Some of the mum’s have commented that they are the lucky ones while they are enjoying the garden with the kids all playing together.

One worrying aspect is that calls to the Domestic Violence helpline have fallen significantly (these are answered remotely by staff not on 24 hour shift) and we are braced for an increase in demand for Refuge space when restrictions ease

SI Wallasey

The clubs is supporting Trussell Trust Foodbank with food and Funding during these difficult times. Members of the Craft Group are busy knitting hearts for the NHS, and making mask extensions for the staff to make masks more comfortable.

See photos below from SI Heswall, Birkenhead, Wallasey

SI Runcorn/Frodsham

Sue Brook a District Nurse in Halton was appealing for soap and shower gels for local care homes. On behalf of the club, member Lesley bought them, they were then picked up by Sue – all achieved with social distancing #SorptimistsWorkAtHome

Two Care Homes have benefitted from this action, and the club hopes to keep in contact with the homes and be ready to support them in the future.

SI Llandudno

The food bank is busy and club president Janet Murfin has already collected donations from some members and will take them to the new food bank premises in Conwy Morfa. This will be an on going project.

Celia has about 30 posters that The local refuge would like members to put up posters in shops giving phone numbers to contact. Celia has asked if anyone could take a poster to their local shop when doing their ‘essential shopping’ during lockdown, several people have offered

See photos below from Runcorn/Frodsham Llandudno and Northwich Clubs

SI Northwich

SI Northwich Members are making scrub bags. Members Louise and Barbara are making sets of Scrubs which will be going to our local hospitals.

The 70th Anniversary Year of the club ended well with the  Foodbank collecting the final 7 boxes of food, so we achieved the aim of donating 70 boxes to celebrate our 70th Anniversary. As the club won’t be going on a summer outing donations have been requested in lieu, to send to the Foodbank at this time. We also reached the aim of creating 70 Twiddlemuffs which will be sent to Knit for Peace after lockdown ends and they can accept them, There have also been lockdown lap blankets created for elderly people as requested by Knit for Peace

Further knitting was done when there was an appeal from the Neo Natal Unit at Leighton for cardigans for premature babies, an ongoing project now. A request was sent from Motherwell, our President’s charity from last year for knitted hearts and flowers to put into bags they are giving to women to support them. In addition there was a request for sanitary products and toiletries for girls who are without these because they are not at school, and products were provided to support them.