SI Londonderry was chartered on 24th March 1944 and is one of the oldest clubs in Ireland, preceded only by those in Belfast and Dublin. Dr Flora Richards was the first president and the club recruited its members from among the women active in the professions throughout the city. The club met first in a room provided by a member, Miss Joyce, above her business, the Coffee Shop in Linenhall St and then in the Northern Counties Club in Bishop St, before moving on to a series of other venues. Today we meet monthly in the White Horse Hotel in Campsie.
The club has always worked to support charities, local, national and international, from helping to establish Edenballymore Lodge, a local nursing home, to supporting international Soroptimist projects such as Pure Water for Senegal or Sight Savers in Bangladesh. Today we are involved with the rest of our federation (SIGBI) in helping improve birthing care in The Gambia; as part of the Northern Ireland region we raise money to provide facilities for widows in Ethiopia, and at local level we raise funds for charities which operate locally, such as the Alzheimer’s Society, the NSPCC and the Marie Curie Foundation, sometimes independently and sometimes with the help of organisations such as the Eglinton Pub Quiz, Brigade Cricket Club or Craigbane Gaelic Athletic Club. We also try to find ways of serving the community, from organising afternoons for carers, to helping with reading in schools or collecting clothes or other commodities for good causes.