Activism against Gender-Based Violence
At a recent club meeting members showed their support for 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence and looked at the display boards used at the TWW event and the ‘Loves Me, Loves Me Not’ bookmarks.
Tomorrow’s Women Wirral awareness day
Tomorrow’s Women Wirral held a combined day about Alcohol Awareness and Violence Against Women on Tuesday 20th November giving an early start to the 16 days of activism. SI Heswall display boards were changed to give this focus and President Maureen, Pat and Jill manned the display. There was a lot of interest especially in the ‘Loves Me Loves Me Not’ bookmarks which were purchased from S.I Poole. Several women said they would use it to remind themselves at bedtime about how they should be treated. There were some powerful and emotional presentations and all contributors were given a minute to say what their display was about. We also had a couple of serious enquiries about being Soroptimists too.
Retired Friends’ afternoon tea 2018
This annual event was again held at St Michael’s hall in Pensby. Approximately 30 retired friends attended the tea party, as sadly we had a few people cry off due to illness. Club members supported the event by providing food, transport and valuable help on the day. A sing a long for guests and members was well received.
Wirral Science Under the Stars
SI Heswall had an interesting display and information boards at this event hosted by Heswall Primary School. It was an evening of scientific discovery for Wirral teachers, school children, families and UK scientific organisations. The focus was the environment and especially the Wirral area. Heswall Primary school was packed with pupils and parents from 6 or more local schools with stands from a wide variety of organisations and science experiments provided by Neston High School and West Kirby Grammar School. Despite the cold, damp evening an outdoor screen showed the film made by school children about our environment.
Our Beach Cleaning display, including a tray of beach litter, and another contrasting lovely shells etc from a clean beach interested several children and there were a number of enquiries about how they could get involved. These were directed to the Love My Beach information and website (lovemybeach.org). Toilet twinning (toilettwinning.org) was also asked about many times.
Modern Day Slavery – Radio Interview by Glenys Hunt
Vintage Radio is a station local to Wirral, broadcasting from the YMCA in Birkenhead. One of the presenters, Chris Youngman, is friendly with a number of Soroptimists, in particular in the Birkenhead club, but including Heswall’s very own Yvonne Ross. Chris became aware of the Anti-trafficking and Modern Day Slavery survey the Soroptimist International of Great Britain and Ireland were carrying out. She hosts a fortnightly magazine programme and wanted someone to go on the show to talk about the survey. The plan was for the broadcast to be prior to the survey, which would have helped with the publicity, but that did not work out. Two weeks after the survey Chris contacted Chris Loughran Programme Action Officer of Birkenhead club to ask if she could go on the show the next day to talk about the survey. Chris was unable to, and also didn’t feel she knew enough about it, so rang me and asked if I could help. I rang Chris Youngman about it, but I could not do the next day either, and Jill was away on holiday. I pointed out that it was too late for the survey now anyway and suggested we leave it until the preliminary results were available, to which she agreed. We therefore arranged to broadcast to go ahead on Wednesday November 15th at 3pm, and the plan was for both Jill and I to be interviewed by Chris Youngman and Glyn Thomas.
On the day Jill was unwell so unable to go so I turned up at The YMCA at around 2.30, armed with a copy of the survey and some provisional statistics both for the entire UK, and just for the Wirral. I was met by Glyn Thomas who asked me for more details about the survey, and trafficking and Modern Day Slavery in general. Chris Youngman was not there, as she had just had a hip replacement operation. Glyn went into the studio, played some music and said a few introductory words. While the next music track was playing he invited me into the studio, to sit in front of a microphone, opposite him at his control desk. He then proceeded to ask me questions, firstly about Soroptimism, then about the survey, and then more general questions about trafficking, modern day slavery, and our work around both areas. Some of the questions became a little challenging as the interview went on, as I had only prepared for talking about the survey itself. He appeared to know very little about the subject, but seemed interested to learn, which I’m sure was good for any listening public. I was in the studio being grilled for almost an hour, punctuated by music every so often (including a Nillson track which I requested, and even took along with me). I was then allowed to escape.
I found the experience very interesting. I didn’t really feel nervous, it was just like having a chat with Glyn, he was very professional and relaxed. I wouldn’t hesitate in going back again if another opportunity arose. I am not sure how many listeners the station gets, but hopefully it will help to spread the word about Soroptimists and raise awareness of the issues of Anti-trafficking and Modern Day Slavery.
( to be repeated on Sunday 3rd December)