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Gifts for refuge residents from Manchester Soroptimists
Soroptimists – Support in the Cities

Soroptimists – Support in the Cities

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More about Soroptimists' Covid-19 projects in South Lancashire Region's two cities. SI Manchester: When Trafford Domestic Abuse Services put out an appeal for toiletries for refuge residents, members rose to the challenge. Soroptimists provided a wide range of essentials, handmade toiletry bags and shopping vouchers to purchase further supplies. The club also made a donation towards necessities for the charity’s new refuge. The club’s newsletter focussed on service projects:  Manchester Soroptimists in action Spring 2020 SI Liverpool: The club supplied 45 buckets of cleaning materials for clients of the Whitechapel Centre for the Homeless. The clients have been housed temporarily in a hotel but are now being moved out to permanent accommodation. Members also gave 15 bags of kitchen cupboard ‘starters’ - tea, coffee, sugar, oil, spices, salt, pepper, pickle, etc. This prompted a Tweet about the Soroptimists’ work from the Lord Mayor of Liverpool, too.
Soroptimists – Lockdown Action

Soroptimists – Lockdown Action

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Widnes Soroptimists with essentials for local women's aid charity South Lancashire Soroptimists recently held ‘virtual’ regional meetings. Covid-19 action reports featured strongly. All clubs are very active during the Covid-19 pandemic. They are offering practical support to their own members – particularly those who are shielded – and to the wider community. St Helens club, for example, gave a consignment of soaps to the local homeless centre to commemorate the club’s 77th anniversary. Liverpool’s Soroptimists have supplied toiletries and household items for the Whitechapel Centre for homeless people. Widnes and St Helens members have also been busy providing buckets full of cleaning materials – and in responding to pleas for more. Leigh & District’s gift hampers for care home staff ‘made’ the local newspaper; and members gave local young carers aged 5 to 11 - so isolated at this difficult time - bags of ‘treats’.
Soroptimists – “Equals”

Soroptimists – “Equals”

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South Lancashire’s Soroptimists made a ‘grand gesture’ to mark International Women’s Day (IWD). To illustrate the maxim “An equal world is an enabled world” members struck the equals pose. Sriya Kulupana, the Region’s Programme Action Officer said, “On 8th March we celebrate the social, economic, cultural and political achievements of women and, this year, the acceleration of gender equality. “However, the IWD campaign is not a one-day-a-year phenomenon. It runs all year long. “Soroptimists worldwide form a global volunteer movement. Working together they transform the lives of women and girls – every day of the year.”
Tara Project – Menstruation Kits in Nepal

Tara Project – Menstruation Kits in Nepal

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‘Unclean’ and ‘impure’ – you are forbidden to cook, attend school, tend the animals or worship in the temple. South Lancashire’s Soroptimists learned about the lifestyle facing thousands of menstruating girls and women in rural Nepal. The guest speaker at the Region’s Programme Action meeting was Jenni Pizer, founder of the Tara Women’s Project. Consider – you are segregated from the family, made to live in an outside shed with others who are menstruating, and barred from touching anything for fear you will contaminate it and render it useless. That is the norm in villages where ‘Chhaupadi’ prevails. You will have no idea why you are bleeding – you have no safe, hygienic sanitary protection and will resort to newspaper, corn husks or old cloths. You are at risk of infection. You are ashamed. The Tara Project addresses this through education – the what? and why?
Message from Outgoing President Sue

Message from Outgoing President Sue

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It has been an honour and a privilege to be your Regional President, I have enjoyed every minute of it, the year has certainly flown by! I enjoyed all of your Charter events but only managed to get to a few Club events and meetings, so, as I look forward to my year as Immediate Past President, I would like to visit as many Clubs as possible, gathering information and spreading ideas for Phase 3 of our Growth Plan. The more members we have, the more we can achieve! As I came out of office, Federation asked for my ‘proudest achievement’, I chose being included in ‘100 Women 100 Stories’ to showcase Soroptimism. I have now been asked to be a judge for the ‘She Inspires Awards’ by the founder Gulnaz Brennan and I look forward to working with Naz, watching and learning how to
Bowlers ‘Do the Double’

Bowlers ‘Do the Double’

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Crosby’s Soroptimists ‘did the double’ in this year’s regional bowls competition. Six clubs in South Lancashire Region competed this season for the team trophy. After a summer of keenly-fought matches, SI Crosby’s points total topped the table. On ‘finals day’ individual high-scoring bowlers from four clubs (Southport, Liverpool, Leigh & District and Crosby) played in a knock-out competition for the Tricia Fahey Trophy. The final game was between Rosemary Moore (SI Southport) and Sandy Taylor (SI Crosby). It was nip-and-tuck all the way until Sandy scored two points to win. Region President Sue Underwood presented the Rose Bowl trophy to team captain Sandy and her SI Crosby members; then the individual trophy to Sandy herself. It was a blustery day of sunshine and sudden, heavy showers. Bowlers and spectators often had to run for cover to the clubhouse. Dot Massey (SI Southport) was again the

Domestic Violence Report

Domestic Violence Report

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‘Specialist domestic violence courts: how special are they?’ Dame Vera Baird QC unravelled this complex topic for South Lancashire’s Soroptimists at the Region’s Programme Action meeting. Dame Vera – a Soroptimist herself (in Newcastle) – explained how volunteer court observers, trained by the Crown Prosecution Service, observed 170 cases in Northumbria. Despite being the focus of multi-agency work, impartial observations in the court system are not routine. Therefore this project, undertaken by local Soroptimists, was ground-breaking. Using a simple questionnaire proforma the observers made notes as each case progressed. Factors included the existence/lack of practical safeguards for the victim in the court; the presence/absence of independent advisors to aid victims; guilty/not guilty plea ratios; and evidence of training of non-specialist magistrates. Over 90% of victims of domestic violence are women. The resulting report from the Soroptimists identified significant gaps in the current system, and made

Royal Invitation

Royal Invitation

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Soroptimists, Soroptimists where have you been? We’ve been to London to see the Queen. Two Soroptimists from South Lancashire Region were privileged to receive an invitation to a garden party at Buckingham Palace. Clare Baxter and Jane Daly are trustees of Crosby Hall Educational Trust (CHET) in Little Crosby. Coincidentally their Soroptimist club (SI Crosby) has longstanding links with CHET. The duo was invited along with other two trustees, and joined the hundreds of guests on this special day. Reminiscing they said, “We were fortunate to see many members of the Royal family and look around the beautiful palace gardens in glorious sunshine. “We enjoyed a lovely afternoon tea while listening to the music of two military bands. It truly was a quintessentially English occasion.”    

#BreakingBarriers : Soroptimists’ Conference

#BreakingBarriers : Soroptimists’ Conference

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The #BreakingBarriers conference attracted 40 Soroptimists from South Lancashire Region. Delegates shared the day with members of the neighbouring region, SI North West England and Isle of Man, who had organised the event. Speakers shared a variety of circumstances in which they had ‘broken through’ barriers, whether of gender, roles, ability or culture. Dr Erinma Bell from Manchester spoke forcefully about the challenge of ‘peace activism’; how she worked for many years to address gun crime in South Manchester; and how she is now furthering community partnerships in order to tackle inequalities. Her tales of feisty dealings with politicians were fascinating. Community activism is also the focus of White Ribbon (UK). Its founder, Chris Green, challenges his fellow men to face up to the role that men play domestic violence. “We need to reach out to men and lead by example”, he says. ‘Leading the

Bowls – New Season

Bowls – New Season

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Soroptimists from South Lancashire have held their pre-season bowls meeting at SI Southport’s clubhouse. The Region’s annual competition brings together teams from several clubs for keenly-fought matches each summer. This year teams from Crosby, Leigh & District, Liverpool, Southport and Widnes Soroptimist clubs will be competing. SI St Helens may also field a team. There are two trophies played for: the team rosebowl and the Tricia Fahey cup for an individual player. (Tricia, of SI Crosby, was a past Federation President and founder of the competition.) The draw took place and captains will now be arranging fixtures. The final will take place on 1st September, at Pennington Park in Leigh. Dot Massey, who co-ordinates the competition said: “A big thank you to Southport Soroptimists for their hospitality. “I notice their members were debating over the colour of new kit. Let’s hope this year’s competition is