SIGBI – Director of Membership: Dishi Attwood
Programme Action: Guest Speaker
Rosemary Webb SI Whitley Bay, Tynemouth & District
My Journey with the Ukrainian Refugees During Covid
26th November 2022
Sustain Our Future
Insignia Presentation – President Pamela hand over to President Martha Dewis. Accepted on her behalf by Christine Lumsdon.
Presentation of President Elect to Jan Robinson
Sustain Our Future
Do you have a sustainable home?
What does that mean? Do you want to save money?
Do you need support with energy?
Actions from SINE Development Plan
Regional Council Meeting and AGM – 24th September 2022
Presidents Report on Regional meeting:
We had a very successful Regional Annual General Meeting and the presentation of our Best Practice Awards for Programme Action on Saturday 24th September. It was a real privilege to have the Soroptimist International President, Maureen Maguire, with us for the day.
After the AGM she spoke to us about the organisation and her International Presidents Appeal “Opening Doors to a Bright Future”.
The Appeal projects will follow the Soroptimist’s commitment to Education by delivering tangible benefits to the World’s most marginalised women, girls and their communities. The plan is to establish projects in each of the five Federations. Projects are already taking place in Cambodia and Uganda with a third due to start in Georgia. The photograph above is of our International Soroptimist President Maureen Maguire (on the left) with our Regional President Pam (on the right).
A donation from our Region towards this Appeal was made
to I.P. Maureen, with several clubs also adding their contributions. Further donations can be made via SIGBI Ltd with the funds clearly marked for the International President’s Appeal.
In my previous message, I mentioned that we had a wonderful selection of Programme Action projects to review for the Regional Best Practice Awards. After much discussion by
the judging panel members, seven of these were short listed as being ‘stand out projects’ and chosen to give their presentations in the afternoon of Saturdays meeting. They were most interesting and were a credit to our Region.
In alphabetical club order, the presentations were:
S.I.Cockermouth and District: (PRFs 60674; 60680; 60681) which updated us all on the continuing work the club has achieved with their ‘Purple Ring Pull’ campaign.
• They not only continue to collect and send out vast quantities of drink can ring pulls to be recycled into jewellery and other items, but they also :
• arranged the provision of a Business Loan to enable families in the Philippines to set up local small businesses to support their families independence.
• the final part of this project work involved members collecting large amounts of much needed mother and baby products which were sent in a large bulk delivery (and were safely received and put to immediate use just before the date of this presentation).
S.I.Darlington and District: PRFs 59593; 59598 ( on the 16 days of activism – Orange the
World) and 59482; 59557; 59583; 59584; 59586; 59610; 60623 which were all about their commitment to Advocacy which was well documented and covered widespread issues. Their photographic account of the ‘Orange the World’ campaign was impressive with cafe’s, shops, community centre’s and the Town Council members (complete with the Town Crier) all decorated in bright orange and actively promoting the message of ‘say NO to Domestic violence against women and girls’. A truly orange event.
S.I. Newcastle upon Tyne: PRFs 59044; 59045; 59046; 59072; 60309; 60310; 60311;
60319; 60670; 60673; 60943 were all centred on work within the West End of Newcastle upon Tyne in Elswick. This is one of the most economically deprived inner city areas in the UK and is a multicultural community with fragile food systems and unprecedented food poverty. The project work involved :
• supporting the West End Women and Girls Centre with their new 10 acre farm project where a grant was obtained to start horticulture at the remote farm in all weathers under a gigantic refurbished poly tunnel;
• support for a primary school where the pupils have 40 first languages and the need to develop a Forest School was identified and the club paid for wet weather clothing for the
• International Women’s Day activities where the pupils produced work on women who had inspired them;
• the unveiling of a ‘blue’ commemorative plaque to Dr Ruth Nicholson who was born in Elswick and a First World War surgeon who, having been rejected by the British Army field
hospitals, joined an all woman field hospital in France where they had outstandingly high rates of recovery and low levels of infections. A role model for the gender equality group
at the West End Women and Girls Centre – and addressed the inequality of women commemorated by such plaques in the City.
• support for the West End Food Bank which is one of the busiest in the UK and not only food was donated but funds to sponsor 300 people to have a hot 2 course Christmas meal
and 200 people to have packs of Hot Cross buns and Easter Eggs. 5 Microwave ovens were donated to address concerns over fuel poverty.
S.I.Penrith and District: PRFs 59638; 60523; 60525; 60528; 60878 these projects were all linked to the theme of climate change and involved :
• The award of an RHS Gold Medal for their work on the Coronation Garden with its wonderful explanation of Soroptimism. Later in top dressing the whole garden with peat
free compost, half of which was donated by the compost manufacturer.
• Tree planting in the Matterdale Flood Alleviation scheme.
• Foot path renewal in the Pattergill area
• The Environmental theme at the Penrith’s Queen’s Jubilee celebrations where a stall was very busy with information on climate change and activities for the children.
S.I. Stockton-on-Tees: PRFs 60727 and 60944 : Projects involved work with asylum seekers through a former member who had been an asylum seeker herself. Collections of
clothing and household items were delivered to the community centre and financial donations made to help meet the needs of these women.
S.I. Tynedale : PRFs 60336; 60470; 60598 all involved support for the Farm project being developed by members of the West End Women and Girls Centre. The work involved:
• the planting of 125 trees to improve biodiversity and shelter to the boundary of the farm.
• the successful application for a Grant from the Greggs Community Fund to provide and improve facilities at this remote farm.
S.I. Tynemouth, Whitley Bay & District: PRF 60281 which was a large scale project with the towns of both Tynemouth and Whitley Bay in Toilet Twinning. Funds were raised and
communities involved and a very successful outcome of 40 toilets in 12 countries was achieved. Each participant in this project received a certificate which is proudly on display
in the local toilets of the 2 towns.
and the winners were:
S.I.Newcastle upon Tyne received the Regional “Reach for the Skies’ Award. Award accepted by Patricia Gatherum ( President Elect and Regional Rep. for S.I.Newcastle upon Tyne )
S.I.Penrith & District received the ‘Connie Dawson Plate’ for their climate change and sustainable themed projects. Award accepted by Pat Newsham of S.I.Penrith and District.
I.P. Maureen also presented certificates to all the seven clubs who were shortlisted.
SI Newcastle Upon Tyne - Winners of the Reach for the Skies Award
SI Penrith and District - Winners of the Connie Dawson Plate
And in the following order:
SI Cockermouth and District
SI Darlington and District
SI Stockton on Tees
SI Tynemouth and Whitey Bay
President Pamela’s Summer Event
Saturday 25th June 2022
First Face to Face SINE Event since 2019
The Auctioneer – Carlisle CA1 2RW
Regional Council Meeting: 19th March, 2022
Link to Video of Key Speaker: Baroness Tanni Grey-Thompson:
Regional Council Meeting: 20th November 2021
Regional Council Meeting: 18th September, 2021
A.G.M. and Programme Action Awards – Reach for the Skies.
Starting the 100 Years Celebrations:
TV interview on Tyne and Wear TV – Speaking on Domestic Violence and the role Soroptimist International is playing in our efforts to empower women and girls.
Opening comments from Federation President Johanna Raffan and Regional President Christine Lumsdon: