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October update on what we have been upto

And what have we been up to lately

August started with a delivery to MK Act of a full car load of bed linen, towels, glasses, crockery, cutlery and other small kitchen goods and bedding goods for those families moving out of MK Act.  We wish them all the very best in their new lives. 



On the 19 August we had our wonderful annual Fish and Quiz evening at Simpson Church, courtesy of Miss Quiz.

It was a sellout evening, all raffles won. The Fish and Chips were delicious, would recommend and our tables of quizzers did very well (we were up against some demon quizzers), but it was all good fun.

The evening raised over £500 and we have already donated £400 to MK Act towards their summer activities fund to pay summer activities for the children and families in their care during school holidays.  They have an aim to raise £10,000 for next year.  Sue Burke, from MK Act, was very grateful for the donation.

And a very big thank you to Miss Quiz for all your hard work in putting on such an entertaining event which we all enjoy and which is a fun and great way to raise money for our charities.

On the 24 Aug the YMCA held their monthly Community lunch, which this month was sponsored by us and Tesco’s.  Well done Mala for arranging.

The residents cooked up lovely meals from Jamica, India and Africa with one of the residents making home made traditional fudge and ice cream I certainly did not leave hungry after having at least two portions of curry and tasty mint ice cream and it was lovely to talk to the young chefs.

I love this picture.  Our meeting in August, or rather our summer party, is a time to just relax, have a good chat, eat lovely food and just be with good friends. 

And this year’s summer party was all of that.  We dressed in Orange to get some practice in for when we start holding our Orange cafes to raise awareness about the UN campaign to End violence against women.

A big thank you Jean for being such a wonderful host and for everyone bringing such great food.

It is not long now till 16 Days of Activism takes place from 25 November till 10 December.  We are working closely with MK City Council, Bletchley and Fenny Stratford Town Council on actions we can take this year.   Posters and a bookmark are currently in development and will hopefully be ready to send out soon.  We are hoping to send the posters to all Parish Councils, MK Dons and some key organisations.  It is planned for the bookmarks to be sent to secondary schools.  There will be a vigil at MK Rose on Saturday 25 November.  Once we have a complete programme we will circulate the details.

September saw us host our first Orange Café at MK Snap.  Thank you, the learners, for making wonderful cakes decorated in orange and beautiful orange themed flower decorations for the tables.  One MK Snap volunteer took away some of the white ribbon cards to share with friends, which is what our Orange café is all about.  Now let’s see what we can do at the next one.


We made a fantastic start to October with our annual Music event.  Thank you, the Heart and Music singers, for a great evening at the Mead Centre in Newport Pagnell.  They put on a varied programme of songs that had us all tapping our feet by the end of the evening.

And a big thank you to everyone who came along to make it the wonderful uplifting experience that it was.  We raised over £700 which will go towards our charities MK Act, Ukraine Appeal, YMCA MK, Works For Us and UnityMK (formerly known as Winter Night Shelter MK).

And then on the following Monday, 16 October we were up with the larks and taking part in the Guiness World Record   attempt to make the longest line of tins of food.

We had to be at Campbell Park by 8.30am.  Thank you, Dave from MK Snap, who with his red van dropped off our 11 crates of tin cans at our hub down by the Parks Trust Offices.

But I digress.  We need to go back to July, when MK Foodbank announced the MK Can event. They asked businesses, organisations, charities, churches, clubs and small groups in MK to help them.  MK Foodbank have seen a significant increase in the need for their services in this economic crisis.  If we achieved the target of 132,000 cans MK Can would help give them 6 months’ worth of food for their clients as well as break a world record.  All each group signing up needed to do was collect 350 tins of food to make a 25metre line. We may be a small club, but we are always keen to help our community and so back in July we said yes.  We could ask our families and friends to help us.  Well, our families and friends, as usual did not let us down.  In fact, they went over and above and we have to say a massive thank you for that.  In the end, I think we collected nearly 1,000 cans and were able to help out MK Snap and YMCA MK reach their 350 targets.  And we had some left over which we donated to the Walton Community Support Project Foodbank.  A couple of their volunteers joined us for the day to help out.  Again, a big thank you to everyone who helped us collect the cans and who helped on the day.  There was a marvellous community spirit on the day and yes, we smashed the record.  It now stands at 102,447 instead of 44,966.  Our club can now officially say we are a Guiness Book of Records Participator and we shall shortly have the certificate to prove it.

And I think this just goes to show being a Soroptimist is never boring.  We never quite know what we are going to get up to next.  And so, my fellow members, what is going to be our next challenge.  And we have been challenged.  2024 will be the SIGBI Federations 90 birthday.  Our new President Ruth Healey has challenged clubs to do 90 things next year.  Well, we may not be able to do 90 things but I am sure we can come up with something, so thinking hats on everyone please.   


On the 20 October we held our 2nd Violet Awards ceremony celebrating women of action, unsung heroes helping vulnerable women in the charities we support.  As you can see from just a few of the photos we had a wonderful evening. 

This is only the second time we have held this event.  This year we were very fortunate in having Jan Flawn, CBE and founder of P J Care sponsor us.  Zoe Raven, CEO of Acorn Early Years Foundation was our guest speaker and gave us a fascinating talk on early years childcare and managing her foundation.  But the evening was all about our nominees.   It was a privilege to say thank you for all the unstinting dedication they give to their charities and the people who they help. Our outright winner was Julie from MK Act.  Her dedication was truly inspiring and we say a very well-done Jan.  And to our runners up from the Ukraine Appeal Chairity, Olena and Irene, again your unstinting dedication only inspires us to do more.  Everyone of our nominees is an inspiration and highly regarded at the charities they work for.  It was lovely to be able to thank them all.

Thank you everyone who helped out to make it such a good event.  Thank you MK Snap for letting us use your wonderful facilities and thank you to David at MK Snap for being very patient and setting up MK Snap to look so good for us.

                  EndViolence Against all women and girls

On the last day of October, we held our first Orange Café at Dobbie’s Garden Centre in Fenny Stratford.  Thank you, Dobbie’s, for being so welcoming and helping us set up in the café.  We were allowed to put our leaflets on tables which included our own soroptimist leaflet as well as our Helps at Hand bookmarks.  And we have been allowed to put up on the community notice board our orange the world and white ribbon posters.  We are at Dobbie’s next on Tuesday 28 November between 10am and 2pm.


At our lovely branch meeting in October, we welcomed Summer, a new member who we hope will enjoy working with us.   And a thank you to Laraine who made two wonderful Quilts that are being donated to the families at MK Act.

And I finish with another thank you, to the wonderful learners of MK Snap for our beautiful Remembrance Wreath, which we laid at the MK Rose Remembrance Day Ceremony on Saturday 11 November at 11am.

Our Remembrance Wreath recognizes women and girl’s contributions and sacrifices across all wars and during peacetime.

The learners from Snap have made each flower individually from willow and biodegradable recycled materials with pride and respect.

As you can see always busy helping out.  If you like what we do why not join us.  We would love to have more members helping us help our charities and our community.  Just get in contact via