SI Dunfermline was Chartered in May 1950. Our mother club is SI Edinburgh. Over the years the Club has been proud to have had 6 Presidents of District Union / Scotland South Region.
Over the years the club has developed friendship links with other clubs across the world. Our first link was with SI Trondhiem in Norway. Trondhiem is also twinned with the town of Dunfermline and one of our past members was a key person in setting this up.
We have a link with SI Johannesburgh in South Africa and correspond with them regularly.
A link with Bielsko -Biala in Poland was also established and we have met with members of the club and correspond with them.
Our Rwenzori project led to the establishment of SI Masaka in Uganda and we regularly support their activities. We have send out money to support their project working with women in prison.
We also have a link with SI Bangalore in India which has been established for many years.
Our most recent link is with SI Haverford West in Wales and we usually manage to meet up with some of their members as our annual conference.
Marking the 21st anniversary of our charter a floral display of the Soroptimist badge was planted in Pittencrieff Park. In 1973 The Year of the Tree, a Norwegian maple tree was planted in the same park.
In International Women’s Year a seat was given to the town and placed in the grounds of Dunfermline Abbey. This was to commemorate the life and work of Dr Jane MacDonald. Dr MacDonald was the founder president of the club.
For our 50th anniversary we raised funds and took a group of mothers and children living in Women’s Aid refuges for a holiday in the Borders. Our 60th birthday saw us create a Community Orchard at Townhill Park in Dunfermline.
In its early days, the Club funded an annual holiday for mothers and children. Members provided an outdoor Christmas Tree for the town and collected toys and gifts for needy children. For many years we ran a Christmas Card and Gift Fair where local charities sold their cards and gifts. During Civic Week each summer we had a stall to raise money for our charities.
Awareness, Advocacy, and Action
In 1995 we received a legacy from, Miss Anna Cruickshank, an honorary member. We use this to give grants to help people from abroad to pay for education in this country or to those going to third world countries to undertake work in education.
Past Presidents Charities have included Pestallozi Children’s Village, Various Cancer Charities, RNLI, Hospices, Story Aid, Help the Aged, Riding for the Disabled, Amnesty International, Alzheimer Scotland, Mary’s Meals and Disability Scotland.
Together we have raised awareness by lobbying, writing letters, signing petitions. We study issues affecting women. Caring for the environment we have cleaned beaches and parks of litter and plastic. ,We have knitted blankets and twiddlemuffs. We have made a huge variety of items from syringe driver bags to pouches for koala bears. We take part in surveys and collect items for recycling. We have done this by dressing in funny costumes, eating strange food, walking over hill and dale, guddling in ponds, riding toy horses but always having fun!
Our Club has always enthusiastically supported the Soroptimist International Projects.
The world has radically changed since 1950 when our country was still recovering from war and we were receiving food parcels from our Friendship Link in Canada. Now, when women and girls are more at risk than ever, we try to help those in countries whose lives are blighted from famine, war and natural disasters.
Throughout all our years of service some things continue and we look forward enjoying our spirit of friendship and fun far into the future.