An opportunity for Soroptimists to visit Geneva on a 4 night break which included a guided tour of the United Nations Palais des Nations and learn about the work carried out a this UN centre was taken up by 3 of our members.As there were no debates on at the time of the visit the guided tour included all the Council Chambers/Rooms and a film on the UN’s activities and objectives. The visiting Soroptimists were treated to excellent hospitality by the local clubs and were taken on a guided tour of the Botanic Gardens. Our 3 members also visited the Red Cross Museum and managed to fit in some other sightseeing and all agreed that Geneva was very beautiful, very clean and easily navigable.
The Elsie Normington Foundation has been our chosen charity for the past 3 years.(The Foundation plans to build “The Haven” in Inverness which will be a specialised play centre, respite facility and supported housing for children and young adults in the Highlands who have learning and physical disabilites). Elsie attended our meeting on 13th March and gave an update on the current monies raised, new methods of fundraising and promised donations. At the end of the evening President Lotty presented Elsie with a cheque for £1,200. That brought the total raised by the club for the foundation to £3,200
The environment is of great importance to us and we firmly believe in recycling so when we heard of a scheme where milk bottle tops can be recycled members immediately started to save our bottle tops for this project run by the Lush company. If in Glasgow the tops can be dropped into the shops in Buchanan Street, Sauchiehall Street or Braehead or alternatively posted to FREEPOST, LUSH GREEN HUB. Alternatively if you wish to give bottle tops to any of our members, we will be happy to forward them. Our first (rather large) batch was posted in March.
Some members attended our grandmother club SI Aberdeen’s 90th Anniversary Celebration Lunch. This was held in conjunction with the Scotland Region Meeting with the business part of the day completed in the morning and then the 80 Soroptimists and guests that included Sue Williams SIGBI President enjoyed a lovely lunch followed by a fascinating talk by Professor Sarah Pederson on “Scottish Women and the Campaign for the Vote”. Congratulation to SI Aberdeen on achieving such a landmark anniversary.
As we have done in previous years, gift bags were filled with toiletries donated by club members and given as Christmas gifts to the women staying in our local refuge at that time. Some small gifts were also given to the children.
On 17th November SI Easter Ross hosted the Region Meeting in Dingwall where we were joined by members from the other 5 clubs in the Scotland North Group namely – Aberdeen, Crieff, Dundee, Inverness & Nairn and Perth. Everyone wore orange to mark the start of 16 days of Action against Gender Violence
4 Members from SI Easter Ross joined 1200 Soroptimists in Liverpool in October for the Soroptimist International Great Britain and Ireland Federation Conference. The conference started on the Thursday evening with the opening ceremony, welcome to Liverpool from the Lord Mayor of Liverpool, Councillor Christine Banks, parade of the flags of the countries and territories of the federation and finally entertainment by the Brothers of Swing. Friday and Saturday were very busy days with Programme Project Reports, voting on Resolutions and the proposals for the Federation Programme Project 2019-2021, SIGBI Best Practice Awards in the categories – Advocacy, Education, Healthcare, Economic Empowerment, Environment and Violence against Women, introduction of the new Programme Team and much more. Over these two days we heard some wonderful speakers – Ellie Bird Lenawarungu, Sally Kettle, Professor Helen Pankhurst, Dr Ann-Marie Wilson, Terry Waite CBE and Sir Ranulph Fiennes OBE.
On 20th October, 2018 our local team Ross County played against Ayr United at Victoria Park in Dingwall. Ross County FC very kindly gave us permission to take a collection prior to the match. 6 of our members braved the cold weather to do the collection and thanks to the fans of both teams we raised an amazing £570.53 for our charity of the year the Elsie Normington Foundation.
Members thoroughly a production of Little Shop of Horrors on 10th October in the Florians Theatre in Inverness