Yeovil Soroptimist Club originally designed the ‘Loves Me / Loves Me Not’ relationship bookmarks that could be easily handed out or picked up by women and girls, giving indicators on good and bad relationship traits. It has since been used by many Clubs nationally with Swindon Club adopting it in 2010.
In 2010 we sent bookmarks to all senior schools in Swindon to help as an aid on relationship education. In 2011 this was extended to Wiltshire and repeated in 2013 and 2015. In Sept 2018, we met Wiltshire Council who added the bookmark images and our contact info to the Healthy Schools website, updating it after lockdown in 2022.
Members have handed the bookmarks out to churches, doctor’s surgeries, local community halls, etc. as well as many people that they have come across in their daily lives. Since 2015 SI Swindon have supported the Nelson Trust Women’s Centre in Victoria Road, who keep a regular supply for the vulnerable women who use their services to pick up and read.
In 2019 members worked with Women’s Aid, supplying 900 bookmarks to them, for use on Healthy Relationship training in schools, alongside Swindon Borough Council. We have made contacts with Army Welfare Units & HIVE centres who are keen to use, with 600 bookmarks supplied so far. The Swindon SARC centre have also started to use them.
The Bookmarks were handed out to the public on a march through Bristol, to highlight the UN day for Elimination of Violence Against Women on Nov 25th 2017. Tara Arkle attended along with her mother, actress Dame Joan Collins.
In 2019 our Club held the November 25th “Railing Against Abuse” event, marching through Swindon town centre and were joined by Deputy Lieutenant Nicky Alberry, Wilts PCC Angus Macpherson and 40 fellow South West Soroptimists and other local representative, handing out the bookmarks to passers by.
In 2022 our club was invited to join the Swindon Borough Council Safer Streets projects to help come up with ideas to make women and girls feel safer on Swindon’s streets. We proposed our Bookmarks and SBC purchased 4,000 for use during Relationship training sessions in senior schools in Swindon. In addition we donated 100 to Voluntary Action Swindon who were planning to hold general open sessions at Swindon College and offer 100 free goody / info bags to students.