As part of 16 Days of Action and the International Day for the Elimination of Violence towards Women, we took part in Dead Women Walking in Manchester city centre. We commemorated the many women who have been murdered by men that were known to them, since last year’s march. About 50 women attended and dressed in bright red, we walked in silent, single file, threading through the busy Christmas Markets, whilst the names of the women were read out. We found the experience to be extremely moving. Fortunately, it was less eventful than last year, where one of the participants was assaulted. We received a little heckling but also received many messages of support and expressions of interest. Elaine Loader As part of the 16 Days of Action against Domestic Violence, the Pankhurst Centre held an event at which 173 handbags were displayed to represent
President Elect Rose hosted a handbag evening at her home on 13th November. Karen from Antonia’s Handbags brought handbags, scarves and other accessories which helped those who attended with Christmas shopping, as well as buying handbags for themselves. As usual she gave us 10% of the proceeds which resulted in £100 for the charities we support . Thank you to Karen, to Rose for hosting the evening and to everyone who supported it.
President Rosemary, Malgorzata (our Friendship Link Co-ordinator) and Hilaria (one of our new members) visited one of our Friendship Link Clubs, S I Essen Victoria. President Rosemary wrote: On the morning of Friday 18th October we flew to Dusseldorf where we were met by Ann-Dore and then travelled to Essen to have lunch in a traditional cafe with a group of members whose warmth of welcome was amazing. After lunch we had a guided tour led by Michaela, a club member and Lutheran minister, visiting the magnificent abbey and learning of the key role powerful women had played in its history. The evening was spent in a brewery and beer keller with more Soroptimist sisters meeting us. On the Saturday morning our new friends had arranged a bus tour of Essen and the surrounding countryside. I particularly enjoyed
The Mayor of Trafford, Councillor Rob Chilton, entertained President Rosemary and six club members in his Parlour at Trafford Town Hall yesterday. Formally Stretford Town Hall, it is now a listed building. Rob explained how the Mayor is selected and his own journey to the role; he described the history of the various mayoral chains and sceptres, and showed us some of the gifts that have been received over the years. We then paid a visit to the council chamber and he talked about how council proceedings are conducted before returning to the parlour for tea and cake and an informal chat. Members attending made donations to the Mayor’s Charity Fund. It was a thoroughly enjoyable and informative afternoon and we are very grateful to the Mayor for inviting us. Barbara Blaber
Fabiola was presented with her badge and welcomed to the club by President Rosemary at our November meeting. Fabiola is a Modern Slavery Project Co-ordinator working with AFRUCA . She designed and implemented the Modern Slavery Project for partnership work AFRUCA-Manchester City Council. She is passionate about community engagement and empowerment; and safeguarding against any abuse. She has worked with Public Health England for 12 years, designed and implemented Sexual Health/HIV prevention campaigns for Black and Minority Ethnics and LGBT in the UK and more in Greater Manchester. She is a members of UKCAB, a national group to advocate for HIV treatment for all. She has done consultancy work for Global Fund in Dakar-Senegal on Measuring service availability at health facility level (malaria, TB and HIV). She has expertise in research around gender based violence and in sexual health. Fabiola is curious about world cultures
Fii was welcomed to the Club by President Rosemary and presented with her badge at our October meeting. Fii is a psychiatrist with more than 15 years experience working with mostly women in mental health rehabilitation and forensic services. She is currently working in Greater Manchester Mental Health NHS Trust in the community. Fii is also one of the founder members of Tanzania-UK Healthcare Diaspora Association working to improve healthcare provision through educational seminars or projects linking with Health Education England and the British Tanzania Society. As a new Soroptimist Fii is looking forward to learn and be involved in different activities.
This year’s event was held on World Alzheimer’s Day – 21st September – and included boat races, information stalls and food. The aim was to challenge the stigmas associated with dementia and to enable people to learn more about the support available for families affected by dementia in Salford. Three of our members ran the tombola and we were pleased to be able to give a donation to Age UK Salford from our Daisy Cross fund.
At the start of her year as Federation President, Sue Williams asked us to ‘Think On It’ – to talk about mental health and the importance of speaking out and raising awareness. To coincide with World Mental Health Day we arranged a ‘Think On It’ event and were joined by friends, family and members of other Clubs in the South Lancashire Region. Three speakers gave us an insight into various aspects of mental health – Sarah Pritchard spoke about her work at Stockport Women’s Centre with women who have been involved with the criminal justice system and have experienced anxiety, stress and trauma. Alison Forster is studying for a MSc in Sport, Physical Activity and Mental Health at Edge Hill University; she emphasised how important physical activity is to everyone’s mental health. Fii Pendaeli is a psychiatrist (and one of our newer members) – she
Catherine and Hilaria were presented with their badges and welcomed to the Club by President Elect Rose at our September meeting.
he speaker at our October meeting was Elizabeth Muir from Medical Detection Dogs. The charity was established in 2008 and is at the forefront of research into the diagnosis of cancer and in helping people with life-threatening diseases. Bio-Detection Dogs are able to find the odour of diseases, such as cancer, in samples of urine and breath. Medical Alert Assistance Dogs detect changes in an individual’s personal odour and alert them or a carer to an impending event. The dogs receive the highest standards of care – living in the homes of staff or volunteers where they are loved and cared for as part of the family. Hilaria gave the vote of thanks and presented a cheque; the charity receives no government funding and we were please to be able to give a donation towards their work.