The Club has two active friendship links – one longstanding link with Soroptimist International of Harrogate and a second one with Soroptimist International of Kathmandu, Nepal
The friendship link with Harrogate was established in 1976. In recent years we worked together to support a project in the Gambia – raising funds to purchase mosquito nets for hospital beds.
Members meet at the annual SIGBI Conference and keep in touch through exchanging newsletters. Several members from Harrogate attended our annual dinner in recent years. In October 2016, our Club President Sue and five members of Paisley attended Harrogate’s 83rd Charter Dinner. It was a lovely evening of good food, friendship and entertainment.
During 2020/21 representatives joined several online meetings at the invitation of Harrogate, which allowed us to maintain our link and keep up to date with how our respective Clubs were progressing.
One of our members met members of Kathmandu whilst on holiday in the area and this lead to the agreement to form a friendship link. In November 2015, we provided hospitality to one of their members to allow her to attend the SIGBI Conference in Glasgow. Members then looked at how we might work together, especially to support the work being carried out at that time by Soroptimists in Nepal following the devastating earthquakes of 2015.
President Sue visited Nepal in spring 2016 along with International President Yvonne and saw for herself the work being carried out by members of Kathmandu following the earthquake. They were active in rebuilding a school to help educate girls and improve their chances of getting out of the poverty made worse by the earthquake. She described the visit as a life changing.
A member of Kathmandu was granted a visa which allowed her to attend the Federation Conference in Liverpool in 2018. We were delighted to be able to support her attendance by contributing to her registration fee. Some stationery items were also handed over for her to take back with her to support her club’s work.
Nepal was affected badly by the pandemic, most recently with the number of people infected rising as the situation in India escalated. Members agreed that we would contribute some funds to Kathmandu to be used as needed to help people affected.
Earlier this year we were able to offer a small amount of financial support to one of the Club’s members who is studying in the UK.