Jackie Paling receives award from Theresa May 2013 / Violence and Conflict Resolution

Below you will find links to related topics on the main SIGBI website which has detail and pictures:

National Action Plan on Women: Peace and Security

A Representative from UK Soroptmists has been working with 3 government departments on updating the current NAP (National Action Plan). Please ask your MP if she(he) is going to be asking any questions. There are 3 areas to look at.

  1. Is HMG asking the women in the conflict area what they want and is HMG listening?
  2. What monitoring and evaluation is there and is it robust?
  3. Why only 3 departments when all departments are sending people out to war zones and post conflict zones?

Anti-Slavery Day 2013 – 18th October

Posted: October 18, 2013

The UK Anti-Slavery Day Act became law in 2010. It was introduced in Parliament as a Private Members Bill in 2010, by Anthony Steen, then MP for Totnes in South Devon, and it passed through both Houses unopposed.

Anti-Slavery Day falls on 18th October each year. It provides an opportunity to draw attention to the issue and aims to put pressure on Government, local authorities, public institutions, and private and public companies to address the problems arising from human trafficking.

You can download the official Anti-Slavery Day poster here.

Marsh Awards 2013

On Tuesday 15th October 2013, the British Home Secretary, Rt Hon Theresa May MP presented Marsh Awards for outstanding contribution to fighting human trafficking. She also outlined the provisions of the new Bill and congratulated all those working at the rock face and the Human Trafficking Foundation for bringing them all together at a quarterly forum.

On Anti-Slavery Day each year, the Human Trafficking Foundation teams up with the Marsh Christian Trust to recognise an individual who has made an outstanding contribution to the fight against human trafficking.  We are delighted to announce that two Soroptimists have been given a Marsh award, and their citation is shown below:

Jackie paling

Jackie Paling and Pauline Monk, Soroptimist International of Great Britain and Ireland. Both Pauline and Jackie have been extremely active in raising awareness about human trafficking, in particular through the Purple Teardrop Campaign. Both of them have greatly contributed to raising public awareness about the Anti-Slavery Day and motivating Soroptimist clubs organise events throughout the country. This year they helped to launch a ‘Call to Action’ across their UK network, encouraging Soroptimists to speak to their MPs about the need for a Modern Slavery Bill to strengthen the UK’s response to trafficking – www.antislaveryday.com/awards/marsh-award/

Pauline Monk

Jackie Paling said “Although the award has Pauline and my names on it, it really belongs to all the Soroptimists in the UK (and the Federation) who are working tirelessly on antislavery issues.”

SIGBI congratulates Jackie and Pauline on winning this prestigious award.  The Guardian also gives SIGBI a mention in the article announcing their own winning of a Media Award at the same event.

The Human Trafficking Foundation was established also in 2010 to support and add value to the work of many charities and agencies already fighting modern-day slavery in the UK.  It grew out of the activities of the UK’s All Parliamentary Group on Human Trafficking. The vision of the Human Trafficking Foundation is of a UK which presents a hostile environment for traffickers, where there is widespread public awareness of the evils and where better support is offered to those who fall victim.


The Purple Teardrop Campaign, spearheaded by Soroptimist International of Poole, work tirelessly year round against slavery, but have released this Newsletter in time for Anti-Slavery Day to remind people what they can do to help.

The main theme of Anti-Slavery Day this year is “Hidden Slavery in Your Community”.  Each of the weeks leading up to Anti-Slavery Day has a sub-theme as follows:

  • Week 1 – General information about ASD
  • Week 2 – Forced labour and criminality
  • Week 3 – Domestic servitude
  • Week 4 – Child trafficking
  • Week 5 – Sex trafficking
  • Week 6 – Marking Anti-Slavery Day – more focus on the Day itself and the events around the country


SI Yorkshire Anti-Slavery Group

STOP THE TRAFFIK and United Nations Global Initiative to Fight Human Trafficking (UN.GIFT)  teamed up and created the GIFT box and launched them at the 2012 Olympics . The GIFT boxes have proven to be successful in large-scale awareness raising; introducing people to the issue of human trafficking and inspiring them to want to take further action. The boxes attracted over half a million people who were engaged and educated about human trafficking.

SIGBI Clubs and Regions hosting the GIFT box are:

SI Circencester hosting the Gift box

15-29th July 2013 – SI Cirencester hosted the GIFT BOX.  Please read a report of their event.

16 and 17th October SI Yorkshire Region, through their Anti Slavery Group will be hosting it.

19-26th October – SI St Helen’s are proud to be hosting the Gift box (see their website for more details)

Other actions Soroptimists are taking are:

SI St Helens sent 500 postcards to protest about the trafficking of children in the cocoa industry

SI Hamilton will have a manned information stand at the Regent Shopping Centre on 18 October 2012 from 9am to 5pm, to raise public awareness about modern day slavery and collecting signatures for the Purple Teardrop Campaign.

Soroptimists in St Helens have sent 500 postcards to Mondelez to protest about the trafficking of children in the cocoa industry and have encouraged clubs in SI South Lancashire to ask their local MPs to support the Slavery Bill 2013-2014, which receives its 2nd reading on 8th November.  For more information about SI St Helens’ activities in this area, visit their website.

In South Wales, Anti Human Trafficking groups are being set up in each Welsh Police Area.  SI Wales South have a seat on the one in South Wales, and have been promised seats on each of the Dyfed Powys and Gwent force area committees, which are in the process of being set up.  The following events are being held for Anti-Slavery Day:

  • SI Tenby, open forum on slavery/trafficking on 18 October – visit their website
  • SI Wales South – manning a stall at the Black History Event at the Wales Millennium Centre on 19/10 – visit their website



Soroptimists to lead UK’s biggest campaign in support of landmine victims

Posted: October 3, 2013

This December, Soroptimist International clubs will play a vital part in the UK’s biggest campaign to raise awareness in support of the victims of landmines and cluster bombs. The annual Forgotten 10 Challenge is ten days of action from 1st to 10th December, with SIGBI clubs across the UK taking action along with school students and other local groups.

The campaign, which is coordinated by Handicap International, has gone from strength to strength thanks to the huge support received from Soroptimists. Last year more than 10,000 people attended public events and activities in schools across the UK and 24 SIGBI clubs organised fantastic events in their local communities.

SI Amber Valley built a Pyramid of Shoes in Alfreton town centre as part of last year’s Forgotten 10 Challenge

This year your club can get involved and help to make it the biggest Forgotten 10 Challenge yet! Handicap International has a range of free resources available for clubs hoping to organise events from film nights and talks to town centre stalls. If you would like to find out more, you can order your free Forgotten 10 Challenge Action Pack here.

Handicap International is an official partner of the UK Programme Action Committee and Soroptimists first worked together with Handicap International nearly ten years ago as part of the campaign to ensure the UK banned cluster bombs.

Fortunately, casualty numbers for landmine and cluster bombs have fallen significantly in recent years, but on average someone somewhere will still be killed or injured by these indiscriminate weapons every two hours. More than 70% of the victims are civilians and most shockingly of all, 40% of these are children!

Billie Wealleans, Programme Action Chair for SI Scotland North explains why she feels it is so important that Soroptimists get involved:

“The clubs in Scotland North have supported the annual Handicap International campaign from the beginning and plan to do so again this year. Landmines and cluster bombs blight the countries they are laid in and maim an innocent population trying to earn a living or children just playing. The fact is that 90% of the global number of cluster munition victims in 2012 were Syrian civilians. The proliferation of these vile weapons should cease and I urge all Clubs to take part.”

This year, as part of the Forgotten 10 Challenge, we are asking Soroptimists to take action to support the forgotten victims of the Syria crisis. We hope that thousands will join us in calling on the UK government to ensure that UK aid reaches the thousands of injured and disabled people who are struggling to access the help that they desperately need.

However your club would like to get involved, John and Tom at Handicap International would love to hear from you. If you have any questions please email campaigns@hi-uk.org or call 0870 774 3737.