At our Regional Meeting on the 9th December, held at the Chesford Grange in Kenilworth, President Jan welcomed three speakers in addition to performing club business and joining club members in fine Christmas tradition!
Our first speaker was Barbara E Dixon SIGBI Programme Director
Barbara talked to club about her journey in soroptimism, having joined in 1992. Barbara was educated in Liverpool, Manchester, London and Cardiff university and gained her first degree in dentistry. Barbara ensures that the Programme team fulfils its remit and prepares and submits reports to the Federation Management Board within the time scales laid down.
Barbara is the chair of the Federation Programme Action Committee where she consults and liases with various members, and monitors trends and global issues . She also responds and clarifies any outstanding issues. In addition, Barbara also acts as trustee for the Diamond Education Grant and Emergency Relief Fund. She also proof reads the Soroptimist News publication.
Barbaras work has included:
- Performing dentistry in Cambodia
- Fundraising for wells in Cambodia
- Painting me pink for breast cancer month
- Making re-usable sanitary towels
- Working on anti-trafficking
- Jumpers for refugees
- Collecting tents for refugees
- Advocacy at the UN
Our second speaker was Di Hill SIGBI Director without Portfolio
Di told us that there were 3 directors without portfolio, and she was passionate about the SIGBI Growth Plan Vision 2021.The goal of the plan was for us to become the leading organisation for todays’ women.
There are 3 main pillars of the strategic plan:
- Core values
- Core competencies
Supporting these pillars are Finance, programme, governance, membership and marketing and communications.
Achievements so far:
- 87 associate members
- membership months
- reduced fees for younger members
- successful rollout of club growth plan
- school clubs
- campus clubs
- recognition for project work
- strong and effective governance
- digital technology
Focus for 2017-2018 – Charitable status, membership month, clubs working on their growth plan
Empower today – enable tommorrow
Our third speaker was Rose Hutchinson Regional Programme Action Officer
Rose talked to us about the Kori Project in Sierra Leone which she has recently visited. The Kori Project has been a long term project of SI Thames Valley, as well as other voluntary organisations. One of the goals of the project is to try to eliminate FGM, and this is being reduced. Rose talked about her time in Freetown and about the new library and the money raised through legacy and fundraising. To raise money local people breed pigs and the local piggery has 60 piglets at the moment. Money is also raised through making soap – ‘Clean Conscience’ soap