The following awards were given in each of the six programme areas:
The winner of the ECOSOC Award is SI Grenada for “Raising awareness of gender-based violence in a rural community”.
Grenada’s population at the last census (2011) was recorded at 103,000, gender-based violence statistic recorded at the Central Statistical Office indicated that 2010 – 2013 reported domestic violence cases were 336, 364 and 462 respectively, thus globally maintaining the highest incidences of gender-based violence in the world.
SI Grenada, over an 8 month period, addressed the issue from a youth perspective, raising awareness amongst young men and women and educating them on how to recognise and address it.
Also nominated in this category were SI Beckenham and District and SI Bombay Chembur.
The winner of the Economic Empowerment Award is SI Jamestown for their “Growing with Money” project.
SI Jamestown invited Scotiabank Barbados to explain the practice of wealth creation to the Members, that is creating portfolios and how to fund initiatives where women and girls could excel in realizing their education and economic wishes. The Members then went into schools and facilitated workshops with children from Nursery to Class 4 in money management and creation. Through the various skits, lessons and activities, the children began to plan their weekly spending habits, design ways they could make more money, devise ways they could accumulate more money, and decide whether they received correct change form any purchase they made.
Also nominated in this category were SI Pune Metro East and SI Richmond and Dales.
The winner of the Environmental Sustainability award is SI South Africa for their “See Solar, Cook Solar” project.
SI South Africa responded to the SI President’s project “see solar, cook solar”‘ by providing solar lights to the residents of Huis Morea, a retirement home in Lotus River, an impoverished part of Cape Town. They felt that giving to a local institution would give us the most ‘value for money’ as the local currency is very weak by international standards and the needs are great in South Africa.
SI South Africa have had regular contact with Huis Morea and were aware that the elderly residents were frequently without electricity. They presented to the home over 57 solar light jars on 6 June 2015. These were very gratefully received by the residents of Huis Morea. Residents were delighted that they no longer have to use candles during load shedding or when their electricity runs out (they live in individual units and pay for electricity by means of a prepaid card system).
Also nominated in this category were SI Chaguanas and SI Bulawayo.
Food Security and Health
The winner of the Food Security and Health award is SI Wolverhampton for their Footprints Orphanage, Kenya Project.
Orphanage UK representative advised SI Wolverhampton that malaria nets were needed for children already in the Footprints Orphanage and to enable other children from local villages to stay overnight to take exams. Nets needed to be locally provided to fit the bunk beds used, increasing local, sustainable employment opportunities. SI Wolverhampton set up a project called ‘Nets for nets’, whereby Members of the Club made items out of net, eg lavender bags, greetings cards with net decoration, net toiletry bags, and sold them to raise funds for mosquito nets. Lavender was provided from Member’s gardens. The provision of nets was well received and appreciated by the children and staff at Footprints. Club members are very enthusiastic about this project and have come up with all sorts of ideas to support it.
Also nominated in this category were SI Falkirk and SI Cwmbran.
The winner of the Learning Opportunities award is SI Cirencester and District for the Literacy Competition.
SI Cirencester and District formulated the Literacy Competition, now in its 6th year. The aim is to improve literacy in local schools, and in 2015 fifteen local schools took part, which is more than previously.
Teachers, parents, carers and the school governing bodies have all remarked on the success of the project, which has gone from strength to strength and raised the profile of Soroptimism locally and associated the name with Education.
It is hoped that even more schools will take part in 2016.
Also nominated in this category were SI Fishguard and SI Dunfermline.
Violence and Conflict Resolution
The winner of the Violence and Conflict Resolution award is SI Grenada, for the Gender Violence Project.
In the fight towards the reduction of gender-based violence in Grenada, SI Grenada collaborated with the Grenada National Organisation of Women (GNOW) co-implementing partners with the Ministry of social Development (MOSD) to roll out a project entitled – “State Response to End Violence Against Women: Legislative and Policy Reform Implementation Programme,” funded by United Nation Thrust Fund to end violence against women.
Although the population of Grenada is small there are relatively high instances of GBV (gender based violence). SI Grenada held a “Victim Speak Out” exhibition to raise awareness and ensured that children in rural areas had the opportunity to visit the exhibition. The exhibition included age-appropriate materials to help get the message across to younger audiences.
It is hoped that by raising awareness in young girls AND boys, then future generations will recognise the signs of GBV and it will become less prevalent.
Also nominated in this category were SI Penrith and SI Cardiff and District.
The overall winner for 2015 was SI Cirencester and District.
Congratulations to all the winners and the nominated Projects.