Soroptimists in South Lancashire were delighted to welcome a special guest to their autumn meetings. Sriya Kulupana (Region Programme Action Officer) introduced Lindsay Green, the Programme Director for our Federation (Soroptimist International Great Britain & Ireland – SIGBI). Her role is to guide and pull together all the practical project service work that our members undertake. At the Programme Action meeting Lindsay reminded members about the critical need to ‘spread the word’ about what we do, by reporting our projects. Soroptimists’ work feeds into the body of evidence that maintains SIGBI’s consultative status at the United Nations. It also supports the prominence at the UN of our ‘parent’ organisation, Soroptimist International. To put it bluntly: no reports = no support = no UN presence! It’s essential that Soroptimists report their service projects – large and small, long-term and one-offs. SIGBI’s ‘Hub’ is the reporting platform and
Soroptimists in South Lancashire Region welcomed Gillie O’Rourke as guest speaker at the recent meeting. Gillie is Chair of the United Kingdom Programme Action Committee (UKPAC). UKPAC assists and supports Clubs and Regions in their service work. The Committee aims to give guidance, make recommendations on projects, provide training – whatever is needed. Integral within our Federation (Soroptimist International, Great Britain & Ireland : SIGBI), it forms part of the Director of Programme’s team. The Chair of UKPAC also represents Soroptimists on several external forums including the 6-0 group. This is made up of the six leading women’s organisations in the UK: Business and Professional Women, Federation of Women Graduates, National Council of Women, Townswomen’s Guild, National Federation of Women’s Institutes – and SIGBI. Recent UKPAC projects have focussed on Modern Day Slavery, Violence Against Women and Girls, and Special Domestic Abuse Courts. In all
Fleeing domestic abuse – yet migrant women with insecure immigration status may have no refuge. At the Region’s winter meeting South Lancashire’s Soroptimists learned of a young charity tackling this situation. Sriya Kulupana (Programme Action Officer) introduced Becky Barlow and Careen Joseph of ‘Beauty for Ashes Refuges‘. This organisation, based in Manchester, is reaching out to the women and their children. The majority of the women needing support have a spousal visa as they are married to UK citizens. The husbands sponsor them – but where there is domestic abuse the women are not entitled to access a safe house. They are exempt from the protection of the 2021 Domestic Abuse Act. The charity is fundraising to provide a refuge in the Manchester area. It is due to open in early 2023. There are plans for a ’boutique’ model, enabling the women to craft items
Soroptimists in South Lancashire began their autumn regional meetings in sombre mode. Region President Dorcas Akeju spoke for all when she paid tribute to the late Queen – citing her dedication and service throughout such a long, eventful reign. Members stood in silence to honour Her Majesty’s memory. ——————— At the Programme Action meeting, the Soroptimists welcomed Charlotte Ellwood, a community fundraiser for North West Cancer Research (NWCR). This is an independent charity that concentrates of the cancer needs of people in North West England and North Wales. It has a long history starting with the Friends of Liverpool Radium Institute in 1948. NWCR looks at what is important in the region’s cancer ‘makeup’ and aims to fund appropriate, locally-focussed research. Charlotte spoke of the region’s cancer patterns and how they can differ from the country as a whole. For example, there are over three
Members of Soroptimist International, South Lancashire, are deeply saddened at the death of Her Majesty the Queen. The Queen dedicated her life to the service of the nation and held fast to that promise. Our thoughts are with her family at this very sad time.