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SI Tenby News items

On this Page you will find news items for Soroptimists International Tenby and District.

Soroptimists Support the Salvation Army

SI Tenby President Sonia Evans was delighted to present a cheque to Major David Morgans to help the Salvation Army in its work to assist the victims of modern slavery.  The money was raised by Dr Anne Kelly, BEM, when she presented the Welsh Government anti-slavery awareness programme to Tenby Mothers’ Union earlier in the year.

The Salvation Army is one of the first providers in Wales for the vulnerable victims of trafficking and SI Tenby is proud to be able, again, to support them.  Only a month ago Tenby Salvation Army was able to provide aid for a victim of slavery in South Pembrokeshire and to help them start to reclaim their freedom.

Centuries after slavery was officially abolished, thousands of people are still being exploited and sold as slaves across the UK. They can be forced to work in the sex trade, used as domestic slaves, exploited for labour or criminal activity, or have their organs removed to be sold.  Victims trafficked into the UK often are often unable to speak English, have their travel and identity documents removed, and are told that if they try to attempt an escape, they or their families will be harmed.

The Salvation Army believes many lives can be saved and many others prevented from months – even years – of suffering unnecessarily if more people were aware that victims can access support and if members of the public were equipped to spot the signs of modern slavery.

Dr. Anne Kelly and SI Tenby continue in their campaign to make the public aware of this shocking crime, and one which affects women in greater numbers than men. It is a worldwide, ever-growing criminal activity and one of the most aggressive and inhumane forms of human exploitation.

Soroptimists Support Bawso

 

Last Wednesday Dr. Anne Kelly, Soroptimist International Wales South Representative on the Dyfed Powys Police Anti-slavery Forum, was delighted to present a cheque to Jasmin Ahmed, the Multi- Agency Risk assessment Conference (MARAC) coordinator for Wales, at the Bawso offices in Swansea.  Jasmin is also a representative on all four police anti-slavery forums in Wales.  Dr Kelly was accompanied by fellow SI Tenby members Mary Fleming and Lindsay Oeppen.

The money was raised partly from the sale of white ribbons, organised by SI Tenby Programme Action officers Wendy Bell and Iris Davies, at an event held in the Regency Hall in Saundersfoot during Hate Crime week. The remainder came from donations from other club members who were unable to attend at the time.

Black and Asian Women Step Out (Bawso), is an all Wales voluntary organisation and Welsh Government Accredited Support Provider, providing specialist services to victims and Black and Middle Eastern Women (BAME)  affected or at risk of domestic abuse and all forms of violence, including Female Genital Mutilation, Forced Marriage, Honour Based Violence, Modern Day Slavery and Human Trafficking.

Jasmin Ahmed was very pleased to receive the donation and explained how Bawso delivers specialist services through a number of projects which support over 4,000 people every year in Wales. Whilst professionals, such as health visitors, schools and social workers, can identify people in crisis and issue them with a food bank voucher, they can only receive a food bank parcel of three days’ food from their local food bank. Bawso is therefore always pleased to receive donations of non-perishable food and basic toiletries to help support the many women they assist.   Dr Kelly hopes to involve other organisations in the community, such as the Women’s Institute and the Mothers’ Union, in providing practical support to Bawso.

Other recent Bawso ventures include the ethnic minority mental health awareness project (EMHAP) which works across Wales, helping BAME women to overcome barriers, access mainstream services and empower them to build confidence and gain skills in order to cope well with mental health issues.

EMHAP was of particular interest to SI Tenby as raising awareness of mental health issues is one of the club’s principal Programme action projects this year. In addition, the club has worked tirelessly for the past twelve years to raise awareness of modern slavery and support organisations such as Bawso and the Salvation Army, the first providers for the victims of this heinous and ever-increasing crime.

 

Soroptimists  “Think On It” for Mental Health Awareness Week.

Pictured from Lt -: iris Davies (Membership Officer), Head Librarian Leah ?, Eleanor Parker ( Regional President & Tenby Member, Sonia Evans ( President), Anne Ponische ( Club Secretary), Wendy Bell ( Programme Action Officer), Elanor Sanderson ( Club Member)

To mark Mental Health Awareness Week Tenby Soroptimists held an Information Stand in the foyer of Tenby Library. The Stand showing many aspects of mental health issues, held information leaflets from organisations who deal with the latter, and  from their own Soroptimst Federation  (Soroptimist International Great Britain & Ireland) project “Think On It”, concentrating this year on Body Image, such an important  area in today’s culture. Green ribbons had been made to give to those visiting the stand, and using the library, also as part of their project, Soroptimists were asked to wear green.

The stand was in the foyer for the week of the 13th – 19th of May, and when not manned by members, the ribbons and leaflets were available in the library. Head Librarian Leah ? and all the staff were warmly thanked for their help and support.

 

Soroptimists raise awareness of Modern Slavery at St Mary’s Mother’s Union

Last Tuesday afternoon, October 2nd,  Dr. Anne Kelly, SI Wales South representative on the Dyfed Powys Police Anti-Slavery Forum, was delighted to be invited to address members of the St Mary’s Mothers’ Union in Church House at their October meeting. She was accompanied by fellow SI Tenby link members Mary Fleming and Lindsay Oeppen.  Ellen Powling, from the Mother’s Union, organised the event and Betty Gordon led the prayers.

Mothers’ Union is a global Christian movement working with people of all faiths in order to develop communities, strengthen families and advocate for change. Mothers’ Union has members in 84 countries across the world. Members work tirelessly, offering Christian care for families, regardless of faith or background.

Dr. Kelly began her talk with a short quiz about human trafficking which resulted in some interesting responses from the audience. She then presented the Welsh Government’s awareness programme on modern slavery.  This outlines the principal forms of human trafficking, including servitude, forced labour, forced or servile marriage, sexual exploitation of males and females, the sale and exploitation of children and organ harvesting. The programme also explains the ways in which the victims can be identified and supported, as well as the means by which the perpetrators of this despicable crime can be brought to justice.

Dr. Kelly next gave out some frightening statistics.  New research estimates there are between 10 and 13 thousand potential victims of slavery in the UK. There were 1,500 referrals in Wales last year including 150 children.  10% were under 10 years of age and the youngest was only two years old.  Finally, Dr. Kelly made the audience aware of recent cases of trafficking and modern slavery in Wales, including Pembrokeshire, which provoked some thoughtful questions at the end of her talk.  Vena Davies, on behalf of St Mary’s Mothers’ Union, then gave the vote of thanks.

 

Soroptimists Support the Salvation Army

SI Tenby’s Immediate Past President, Iris Davies, was delighted to present a cheque to Captain David Morgans, the Commanding Officer of Tenby Salvation Army.  This was from money raised by Dr. Anne Kelly, SI Tenby’s Programme Action Coordinator, in her role as SI Wales South’s representative on the Dyfed Powys Regional Anti-Slavery Forum. This has enabled her to deliver a presentation to interested groups in order to raise awareness of modern slavery.

The Salvation Army are one of the first providers in Wales for the vulnerable victims of trafficking. SI Tenby is proud to be able, again, to support the work of the Salvation Army. They provide invaluable support to individuals being rescued from trafficking to help them start to reclaim their freedom. The Salvation Army is also working to empower communities through education and income generation so that they are better protected from the dangers of being trafficked in the first place.

Human trafficking is a heinous crime and one which affects women in greater numbers than men. Soroptimists worldwide raise awareness, and advocate for change to address this confronting issue. It is a worldwide, ever-growing criminal activity and one of the most aggressive and inhumane forms of human exploitation.

 

Tenby Soroptimists support Kingsmoor WI Group in raising awareness of Modern Slavery

Last Thursday SI Tenby’s Programme Action Co-ordinator Dr. Anne Kelly was delighted to be invited to address the Kingsmoor Group of Women’s Institutes at their spring meeting in Summerhill Village Hall. This included WI Templeton, WI Kilgetty, WI Saundersfoot and WI Summerhill.  Dr. Kelly was accompanied by fellow Tenby Soroptimists Mary Fleming and Lindsay Oeppen. The evening was organised by the Kingsmoor WI Secretary, Joyce Lewis. Marilyn Davies, the Kingsmoor group Treasurer, also helped to chair the event.

After the Kingsmoor group’s Business Meeting Dr. Kelly took centre stage and gave the audience a detailed insight into SI Tenby’s on-going programme to combat modern slavery.  She also outlined the Welsh Government’s awareness Training programme on modern slavery and human trafficking.  She then briefly described the principal victims of human trafficking and the ways in which they could be identified and supported and the means by which the perpetrators of this despicable crime could be brought to justice.

Dr. Kelly subsequently gave out some frightening statistics. New research estimates there are between 10 and 13 thousand potential victims of slavery in the UK. Dr. Kelly also made the audience aware of recent cases of trafficking and modern slavery in Wales, including Pembrokeshire, which provoked some thoughtful questions at the end of her talk.

It was next time to judge the competition.  WI members had been asked to make a sentence out of the word slavery.  There were some very effective and innovative entries, but the overall winner was Eileen Algate, a member of Summerhill WI, with her powerful response: ‘Slaves’ lives are valueless – emancipation removes yokes.’

Dr. Kelly would like to thank the Kingsmoor WI group, especially Joyce Lewis, Marilyn Davies and Kath Phillips, for their warm hospitality and interested response to her talk.

If anyone has suspicions that someone they know may be a victim of slavery SI Tenby urge you to report it by calling 101, or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111, or the Modern Slavery Helpline on 0800 0121700.

 

Tenby Soroptimists Celebrate International Women’s Day: March 8th 2018

 Last week was an important one for SI Tenby and District,   as they celebrated International Women’s Day by holding a special lunch at the Giltar Hotel, together with Soroptimists from other local clubs and guests.

Soroptimists support women and girls across the world and strongly believe that it is important to ensure that women are encouraged and allowed to reach their full potential. SI Tenby President Iris Davies was therefore delighted to welcome the Right Reverend Joanna Penberthy, Bishop of Saint Davids, as the guest speaker.

In her address, Bishop Joanna spoke of the need for women to be treated as equals in every sphere of life.  Whilst everyone should indeed be celebrating the fact that it is 100 years since the right to vote was granted to women, the job is not yet done.  There are still too few women in public office or in positions where they can bring about change and it is still necessary to improve women’s status and rights without fear of ridicule, violence or any form of misogyny.

Bishop Joanna also praised the ongoing work of Soroptimist International and of the Mothers’ Union in supporting women’s efforts to bring about change in today’s society.  She subsequently described her own personal calling to the priesthood and the unique journey that had led her to her current position as Bishop.  Finally, she found it remarkable to note that in 1908 Emmeline Pankhurst had visited Pembrokeshire, spending time at Saint David’s Cathedral where Bishop Joanna had, earlier in the day, opened an exhibition commemorating Emmeline’s visit, and that of other Suffragettes, 110 years ago.

President Iris, on behalf of SI Tenby and guests, then thanked Bishop Joanna for giving such an interesting  talk, and one which was so well suited to the occasion.  Everyone concurred that this had been an excellent way in which to celebrate International Women’s Day.

 

February 2018 Report for Gleanings

It has been a busy start to the New Year for members, initiating new programme action projects, preparing for charity events and attending local and regional meetings.

Preparations for the annual Charity Lunch, overseen by SI Tenby’s Social Secretary Pam Maggs, are well in hand. This will be held at the Giltar Hotel on Sunday February 25th and is in aid of the British Heart Foundation, one of President Iris’s nominated charities.  The guest speaker will be a representative from the Foundation. A lunch to celebrate International Women’s Day has also been organised.  This will take place at 12.30 pm at the Giltar Hotel on Thursday, March 8th, when Bishop Joanna will be the guest speaker.

Programme Action, however, remains SI Tenby’s main focus and, earlier this month, President Elect Mary Megarry organised a visit to the Torch Theatre to see a screening of the award winning documentary ‘Human Flow’.  The film highlighted both the staggering scale of the refugee crisis and its profoundly personal human impact. Over 65 million people around the world have been forced from their homes to escape famine, climate change and war in the greatest human displacement since World War II.

Thirteen club members attended and all agreed that it was a very thought-provoking film. SI Tenby member Anne Ponische is currently researching the government’s Community Sponsorship Programme designed to help communities prepare for welcoming a refugee family.

Programme Action Officer Eleanor Parker is also working closely with the local guides in order to raise awareness of the Mehru Garden Project. This SIGBI initiative will support some of the poorest women-led households in Kenya, and is entirely focussed on providing opportunities to women and girls who may never otherwise be given the chance to earn an income, and gives them status within their community.

Eleanor and SI Tenby colleagues plan to spend two consecutive evenings with the Guides, explaining the project and helping them to plant a flower bed in the vicinity of Tenby Museum. The plants will be in the Suffragette colours of purple and yellow.

At the recent Business Meeting Programme Action Co-ordinator Dr. Anne Kelly was also able to update members on current action concerning Modern Slavery. Three members have volunteered to attend the slavery awareness training day at Dyfed Powys Headquarters in April, which will enable them to deliver the programme to other organisations. Dr. Kelly has also been invited to address the North Pembrokeshire group of Women’s Institutes on Modern Slavery in March.

The next Business Meeting will be at the Giltar Hotel on Tuesday March 6th at 7.30pm.  New members are always welcome

SI Tenby December Report for Gleanings

It has been a busy end to the year, culminating in support for the St John’s Christmas Tree Festival. President Iris and fellow Soroptimist Judy Brew (pictured above) decorated the tree in the Soroptimist International colours of blue and yellow, to stand alongside the many other beautifully adorned trees in the Festival. These were all decorated by members of the church and local organisations in the Tenby area.

Members have also supported a number of charities throughout the year; notably raising money for Tenovus and local charities. They have also attended several Business and Regional Meetings, and, most importantly, the 83rd SIGBI Conference which was held in Cardiff.   President Iris and her colleagues were present at the Conference which was entitled ‘Step Up – Lead the Way’.  Keynote speakers included Michael Kaufman, the co-founder of the White Ribbon campaign, Mandy Hickson, the first woman to pilot a tornado jet and Olympian Dame Katherine Grainger. All gave very interesting and informative talks.

It was however of particular interest to SI Tenby members to listen to the project speakers on the second day of the Conference.  These included Steven Chapman, Wales’s anti-slavery Coordinator, who has personally addressed the club on the issue of modern slavery and commended members, led by SI Tenby’s Programme Action Coordinator Dr. Anne Kelly, for their sterling work in raising awareness of this appalling crime.

The club’s on-going project concerning modern day slavery remains a central focus for programme action.  SI Tenby’s Programme Action Officers Margaret Harries and Eleanor Parker recently carried out an anti-slavery awareness project with the Tenby Girl Guides. This culminated in a poster display in Tenby Library to coincide with the UK anti-slavery Day in October. That same week Dr. Kelly also addressed the Denbych group of Women’s Institutes in order to deliver the Dyfed Powys Police Anti-slavery awareness programme.

SI Tenby is proud to be represented by Dr. Kelly on the Dyfed Powys Anti-Slavery Forum which meets four times a year at Police Headquarters in Carmarthen. The Mayor of Tenby, Sue Lane, recently presented the Club with a certificate in recognition of the club’s work over the past ten years to raise awareness of modern slavery.

Members have also been actively involved in other programme action projects, including supporting Tenby Museum and raising funds for the Meru Women’s Garden Project in Kenya. Furthermore, several members set up a display and helped to sell orange and white ribbons in the Regency Hall in Saundersfoot on November 25th in order to raise awareness of hate crime and domestic violence.

Soroptimism is rooted in the vision that women and girls will achieve their individual and collective potential.  SI’s advocacy work and on-the-ground projects seek to drive the realisation of these aspirations and ensure that women and girls have an equal voice in creating strong and peaceful communities, now and in the future. However, SI members are also able to develop firm friendships through their programme action and charitable work.

The final occasion of the year was SI Tenby’s Christmas Dinner which was held at the Giltar Hotel on December 5th and, as always, was a great success. President Iris would like to thank Malcolm, Patrick and their staff at the Giltar Hotel for the warm hospitality received over the past year.  In addition, SI Tenby and District would like to thank all those who have supported the club throughout 2018.

Tenby Soroptimists assist Dinbych WI Group to raise awareness of Modern Slavery

Michael Smith, Dyfed Powys County Council and Dr. Anne Kelly, SI Tenby Programme Action Co-ordinator

Last Wednesday, October 11th 2017,  SI Tenby’s Programme Action Co-ordinator Dr. Anne Kelly was invited to address the Dinbych Group of Women’s Institutes at their autumn meeting in the Regency Hall in Saundersfoot. The evening was organised by the Dinbych WI Secretary June Glennester and hosted by the Redberth WI.

Michael Smith, the Community Cohesion Officer for Dyfed Powys County Council, introduced the event. He was able to clarify his role as a Community Cohesion Officer and give details the work of the Dyfed Powys Police Forum, of which both he and Dr. Kelly are members.

Dr. Kelly then took centre stage and gave the audience a detailed insight into the Welsh Government’s awareness Training programme on Modern Slavery.  She subsequently described the principal victims of human trafficking and the ways in which they could be identified and supported, as well as the means by which the perpetrators of this shameful crime could be brought to justice.

Dr. Kelly next gave out some frightening statistics. New research estimates there are between 10 and 13 thousand potential victims of slavery in the UK. Slavery in Wales is also on the rise. In 2016, 123 referrals of potential victims of slavery were reported, some of whom were under five years in age.   There is clearly no room for complacency as often the victims are hidden in plain sight. Slavery does not necessarily mean being physically confined or restrained. If anyone has suspicions that someone they know may be a victim of slavery please  report it by calling 101, or Crime Stoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111, or the Modern Slavery Helpline on 0800 0121700.

Dr. Kelly concluded her talk by outlining SI Tenby’s on-going programme and, more recently, SI Wales South, to help deliver the anti-slavery agenda in Wales.  She distributed a questionnaire, created by SIGBI, to help assess the awareness of the general public about modern slavery. There was then an opportunity for members of the audience to ask both Mr. Smith and Dr. Kelly questions about the issues raised.  Amongst other things, there was considerable interest in the Dyfed Powys training programme.

Next Wednesday, 18th October, is National Anti-slavery Day which provides an opportunity to raise awareness of human trafficking and modern slavery, and to encourage government, local authorities, companies, charities and individuals to do what they can to address the problem.

SI Tenby plans to set up an exhibition in Tenby Library to coincide with Anti-Slavery Day. This will feature posters created by the local Girl Guides group as a result of a recent SI Tenby programme action initiative to raise awareness of human trafficking by again working with young people in the community.

 

Soroptimists join forces with the Trefoil Guild in Charity Walk for Tenovus

 

 Recently Tenby’s Mayor Sue Lane was delighted to launch SI Tenby’s ‘Light up the Night’ Sponsored Charity Walk in aid of Tenovus, the leading cancer charity in Wales. Tenovus brings treatment, emotional support and practical advice to all those affected by cancer, as well as carrying out vital research.
SI Tenby President Iris Davies, accompanied by fellow Soroptimists, led the candlelit walk through the town and along the North Walk.  A bucket collection was carried out by members of the Trefoil Guild.  This, coupled with the sponsorship money, raised a considerable amount for Tenovus, one of President Iris’s nominated charities during her year of office. She would like to thank all those who took part in the walk and those who contributed to the bucket collection.

 

Tenby Soroptimists Support the NSPCC

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Last Tuesday SI Tenby President Eleanor Parker was delighted to welcome Karen Minton, Service Manager for the NSPCC, as guest speaker at the first Business Meeting since the summer break.

Karen gave a very personal account of her work with the NSPCC in the form of a photographic diary.  This commenced with a picture of her daughter, whose death twenty years ago had been the reason that she had undertaken a degree course and become a social worker.

Karen then gave an absorbing and effectively illustrated account of the variety of services she and her team provide at Ty Findlay in Swansea, one of the three Centres for the NSPCC in Wales. This included provision of prenatal educational programmes, improving parenting, helping children and their mothers to recover from domestic abuse, supporting children in care and detecting and tackling neglect in order to provide the right support for families.

Karen also discussed the work of Childline which merged with the NSPCC in 2000 – every 20 seconds they receive a call from a child and in Wales 157 trained volunteer counsellors operate out of two regional bases in Cardiff and Prestatyn.   Karen then outlined two of the NSPCC’s current campaigns – keeping children safe from abuse and keeping kids safe online.

The NSPCC is an independent charity and is reliant on the support of the general public as well as its huge team of dedicated volunteers and fundraising supporters.  President Eleanor thanked Karen for giving such a fascinating insight into the many services provided by the NSPCC and hoped that the Club could help with fund-raising for this very important charity in the future.

 

Soroptimist Garden Party for Cancer Research UK

Earlier this month SI Tenby member Marjorie Piper warmly welcomed over sixty guests to her lovely gardens in Redberth in order to raise funds for Cancer Research UK.

Guests feasted on a sumptuous array of cakes, sandwiches and other delicacies, as well as plentiful supplies of tea. There was also the opportunity to purchase homemade treats from the cake stall, as well as raffle tickets, in the hope of winning one of the wonderful prizes on display.

Everyone who attended agreed that it had been a most enjoyable afternoon and were delighted to have raised over £700 for Cancer Research UK. This very important charity receives no government funding and their life-saving work relies on charitable donations in order to fund scientists, doctors and nurses to help beat cancer sooner. Every step they make towards beating cancer relies on every pound donated.

SI President Eleanor Parker would like to thank all who helped to make this event such a success, especially Marjorie for all her hard work and, of course, for the use of her beautiful garden.

 

 

Tenby Soroptimists support Toilet twinning campaign

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Last Friday SI Tenby Social secretary Pam Maggs, accompanied by fellow Tenby Soroptimists, was delighted to receive her framed certificate for twinning a toilet at the Southcliff Hotel with a household latrine in an impoverished community. Soroptimists from across SI Wales South and throughout the UK are supporting the Toilet Twinning campaign run by the Tearfund charity

Toilet Twinning provides people in the poorest communities on the planet with a decent toilet, clean water and all the information they need to stay healthy. It’s the key to helping whole communities break free of the poverty trap. For just £60, it is possible to twin with a single household latrine in an impoverished community. £240 enables toilet twinning with a school block. The smallest room then becomes the proud owner of a personalised certificate, complete with a colour photo of its twin and details about its new owner.

The donations are used by Tearfund to provide clean water, basic sanitation, and hygiene education in Africa and Asia. This vital combination works together to prevent the spread of disease. Children are healthier, and able to go to school; parents are well enough to work their land and grow enough food to feed their family. In Africa, half of young girls who drop out of school do so because they need to collect water – often from many miles away – or because the school hasn’t got a basic toilet.

Tenby Soroptimists, as part of this year’s Programme Action initiative, hope to help flush away poverty by involving schools and local businesses in toilet twinning. For more information about this important and worthwhile project please visit  www.toilettwinning.org.

 

Tenby Soroptimists Launch Membership Month

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Last Tuesday SI Tenby President Eleanor Parker chaired the first Business Meeting in her year of office. She was also pleased to welcome a prospective new member to the meeting. After the various business items had been discussed, President Eleanor was delighted to introduce SI Wales South Regional President Bobby Sheldrake as the guest speaker for the evening.

Soroptimists will celebrate their centenary as an organisation in 2021 but, if they are to continue to improve the lives of women and girls at a local, regional, national and international level, they need to recruit new members. May is SIGBI’s designated month for a membership drive, so President Bobby was able to offer some very interesting ways of attracting new members to SI Tenby and District. However, President Bobby’s key message was that, as well as providing service, Soroptimists always offer friendship and fun.

SI Tenby President Eleanor then thanked Bobby for giving up her time to address the club. The Club has made use of some of the suggested recruitment strategies in the past, but it is always helpful to explore new ideas. It had already been decided to have a recruitment drive on two successive Saturdays outside the Nat West bank in Tudor Square, firstly, on May 21st and secondly on May 28th. A stall will be set out up, not only show-casing the work of SI Tenby, but also utilising some of President Bobby’s suggestions.

 

SI Tenby and District Report for Gleanings – April 2016

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Last week SI Tenby held their annual AGM and handover dinner at the Giltar Hotel.  Presidents Wendy Bell and Rosemary Proctor gave a brief overview of their busy year which included numerous fund-raising events as well as attendance at a number of regional and civic functions, including the town’s Remembrance Service and Mayor Making ceremony.

As a result of the fund-raising the Treasurer was delighted to report that the club had been able to support a large number of charities, locally, nationally and internationally. At a local level, support was given to Tenby student Rachel Vickery towards a sponsored charity venture for the British Epilepsy Society. A cheque was also presented to  the South Pembrokeshire Travel Fund for Sick Children, assisting with travelling expenses for families whose children need to travel to and from hospitals both locally and as far as London or even further afield for specialised treatment. This latter charity was President Wendy’s personal choice whilst, at a national level, President Rosemary chose Alzheimer’s Research UK. A large amount of money for this organisation was raised at the recent Charity Supper held in New Hedges Village Hall last March. Money was also donated to BAWSO, the first providers in Wales for the victims of Modern Slavery. Internationally, money was donated to Water Aid and Mary’s Meals.

SI Tenby Secretary Sonia Evans noted, although it had been a very difficult year for Wendy, as she had suffered the devastating loss of her husband, a considerable amount of money had been raised for charity under their leadership, which was to be commended, as was the smooth running of the Club in their year of office. Sonia went on to summarise the Club’s many activities in 2015 -16, including a wide range of speaker evenings, attendance at regional meetings and giving support to other SI clubs at their Programme Action and fund-raising events.  However, it had also been a sad year for the Club with the loss of Doreen Hammersley BEM who will be greatly missed, not only by SI Tenby but by everyone who had the privilege to know her.

SI Tenby Programme Action Coordinator Dr. Anne Kelly then gave a brief summary of her interventions on the club’s behalf in respect of Modern Slavery, including details of the SWIS Modern Slavery project and the Dyfed Powys Police Forum.  She also hoped to arrange a meeting with Helida Ramogi so that a cheque can be presented to BAWSO.

Finally, Presidents Rosemary and Wendy thanked the club officers for their hard work throughout the year before presenting incoming President Eleanor Parker with the Chain of Office bearing the names of all sixty past presidents.

SI Tenby was then delighted to welcome Inner Wheel President Jenny Deverson to the Handover Dinner.   Thanks as always are extended to Patrick, Malcolm and their staff at the Giltar Hotel for the excellent food and warm hospitality.

 

Soroptimists Raise Awareness of Modern Slavery

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Last Saturday SI Tenby Programme Action Officer Dr. Anne Kelly was delighted to welcome Mr. Stephen Chapman, Anti-Slavery Coordinator for Wales, to a special Brunch Meeting at the Giltar Hotel.  SI Presidents Wendy Bell and Rosemary Proctor, a large number of fellow Soroptimists and friends, as well as representatives from other organisations such as Tenby Rotary Club and Tenby Inner Wheel, were also in attendance.

Mr Chapman, who was the former deputy director at the UK Border Agency and more recently helped organise security for the Olympic Games, now holds the unique post of Anti-Slavery Coordinator for Wales. He explained that Wales is now leading the way when it comes to tackling the illegal trade of human trafficking and other nations are watching its work with interest.

He defined slavery as the movement of one person from one place to another, within a country or across borders, into conditions of exploitation against their will. He outlined the principal slavery offences, which included labour exploitation, sexual exploitation, child exploitation, domestic servitude, criminal exploitation and human organ harvesting, but also pointed out that traffickers don’t recognise those boundaries. A trafficked child working in domestic servitude will be moved on to work in the sex industry or a factory – they can work across it. Although they are called human trafficking victims, the word slavery is more appropriate, because that is what it is, and the perpetrators are criminals.

Steve Chapman went on to give some disturbing data about reported cases of slavery in the UK – the 2014 National Referral Mechanism, which is the current measurement for slavery, estimates that there are between 10,000 and 13,000 victims of modern slavery in the UK.

He concluded his talk with a detailed account of the recent situation in North Wales, where 111 migrant workers, mostly from Romania, were found to be living in appalling conditions in a building in Deeside Lane in Sealand.  Operation Base involved the coordination of over twenty partner agencies, including the police, local authorities, the CPS, charitable organisations such as BAWSO, and Soroptimist International. The victims were all taken to a Reception Centre in Flintside and dealt with on a case by case basis.

Finally, Mr Chapman reminded his audience that modern-day slavery is not a hidden crime and every person has a part to play in rescuing victims from their misery. The public need to use their common sense. It is about being a good neighbour. Trafficking affects all aspects of society and everyone has their role to play. If you suspect traffickers are working in your area, call police on 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111. In emergencies, always call 999.

Everyone agreed that it had been a most informative if disturbing presentation.  SI Tenby would like to thank Mr Chapman for giving up his time on a Saturday morning and helping to raise awareness of the extent of the problem of Modern Slavery in Wales and the many strategies in place to tackle it. All proceeds from the talk will be given to BAWSO, the first support agency for victims of modern slavery in Wales.

Thanks, as always, are also extended to Malcolm, Patrick and their staff for the warm hospitality and excellent refreshments.

For more information about Mr Chapman’s work please visit www.wales.gov.uk/antislavery

 

SI Tenby celebrate International Women’s Day

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Last Saturday SI Tenby Presidents Wendy Bell and Rosemary Proctor welcomed guest speaker Judith Barrow, and a large gathering of SI members and friends, to a special Brunch Meeting at the Giltar Hotel in order to mark International Women’s Day.

Local author Judith Barrow gave a brief but disturbing insight into the effects of Diethylstilbestrol on the daughters of women who were prescribed it while pregnant—commonly called DES daughters. Judith was very keen to raise awareness of the effects of DES on women in the UK, as there has been very little information made available to the public. Women who believe they may have been exposed to DES before birth should be aware of the possible health effects of DES and be able to access their medical records.

Diethylstilbestrol is a synthetic form of oestrogen, a female hormone. Doctors prescribed it from 1938 until 1971 to help some pregnant women who had had miscarriages or premature deliveries. However, in 1971 researchers linked prenatal DES exposure to a type of cancer of the cervix and vagina called clear cell adenocarcinoma and a campaign was started to tell the public about the problems DES could cause. However, many people who were exposed to DES as a foetus still don’t know it. DES sons also have a higher risk of testicular cancer.

As a result of her research Judith has published a book entitled ‘Silent Trauma, giving a first-hand insight into a number of harrowing accounts from women now in their late forties who had been exposed to DES in utero and subsequently suffered from severe endometriosis, reproductive problems or clear cell adenocarcinoma.   Proceeds from the sale of the book go in part to the charity DES Action based in the USA.

All agreed that it had been a most informative talk and one befitting International Women’s Day, as approximately 5 to 10 million women are thought to have been exposed to the drug, in both America and Europe.

 A Victorian Christmas for Tenby Soroptimists at Picton Castle

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SI Tenby Presidents Wendy Bell and Rosemary Proctor, accompanied by a large group of Tenby Soroptimists and friends, recently visited Picton Castle, in order to enjoy Pembrokeshire’s 13th Century Castle in all its Festive Christmas Glory. They were greeted in the neo- Norman porch by their tour guide Dai Evans, Director of the Picton Castle Trust.
The tour then began in The Great Hall with some delicious refreshments of mulled wine or spiced apple juice, accompanied by mince pies. These were consumed in front of a roaring log fire under the watchful eyes of Sir Robert Walpole, Britain’s first prime minister, whose portrait hangs over the magnificent Portland stone fireplace. Although the brilliantly decorated Christmas tree dominated the scene, Dai also drew the group’s attention to the controversial ‘Picton Renoir’ Boats on the Seine at Argenteuil which is on display in the Hall.
The tour then continued to the beautiful circular Library housed inside one of the ancient round towers. Again, a stunning Christmas tree took central stage with its traditional Victorian adornments of dried fruit and baubles. The group then were taken to the Staircase Hall and a much smaller tree, standing on a table in front of the beautiful 18th century Gobelins tapestry. Dai explained that this would have been the only tree to be adorned with presents for the children of the house. These would have been distributed on Christmas morning, when the tree’s candles would have been lit under the careful supervision of the footmen.
Next the group discovered the elegant Regency Dining Room laid for a sumptuous Victorian Christmas feast. The tour ended in the Drawing Room, again home to a beautifully decorated Christmas tree. Festive greenery also decked out the various lintels and table tops. Throughout the tour Dai gave a wealth of information about Victorian yuletide traditions, as well as giving a fascinating insight into the history of Picton Castle.
The outing ended with a wonderful three course Christmas meal in Maria’s Restaurant set in an atmospheric ‘wine cellar’ kept cosy by a wood-burning fire. SI Tenby would like to thank Presidents Wendy and Rosemary, Dai Evans and the Picton Castle Trust volunteers and Maria and her staff for all their hard work. All agreed that it had been a wonderful way to commence the Christmas Season. Group tours are available until December 19th – please visit www.pictoncastle.co.uk for further details.

Tenby Soroptimists Champion Alzheimer’s Research UK

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SI Tenby and District held a very successful Coffee Morning in Church House on Saturday, October 17th, in aid of Alzheimer’s Research UK. There were also various stalls, but the freshly made welsh cakes attracted most interest and raised over £100 for the charity. Overall, proceeds from the event exceeded £200, all of which will be given to Alzheimer’s Research UK.
SI Tenby Presidents Rosemary Proctor and Wendy Bell were then delighted to invite Zoe Baggott, Regional Fundraising Officer (West of England and Wales) for Alzheimer’s Research UK, to a special Brunch meeting at the Giltar Hotel on Tuesday October 20th. The event was very well attended, not just by Tenby Soroptimists, but also by representatives from St Issels WI, Tenby Floral Society, Tenby Inner Wheel and SI Haverfordwest.
Zoe gave a detailed account of the invaluable work carried out by Alzheimer’s Research UK. Research is the only answer to dementia, which affects over 850,000 people in the UK and is the leading cause of death in women. Alzheimer’s Research UK funds world-class pioneering scientists to find preventions, treatments and a cure for dementia. Twenty projects have been funded at research institutions in Wales; notably, at Cardiff University, where Professor Julie Williams leads a team of scientists from around the world analysing data from a large number of people with early onset Alzheimer’s disease. Understanding the processes that underlie increased risk of developing Alzheimer’s may reveal important targets for future treatments.
Zoe also gave a clear insight into the different types of dementia as well as the early symptoms and risk factors. There is still much to learn about the risk factors for dementia, but in most cases, it is likely that one’s age, genes, medical history and lifestyle could all be all contributory factors. However, leading a healthy lifestyle and taking regular exercise will not only lower the risk of cardiovascular diseases, it could help to lower the risk of dementia too. Seeking an early diagnosis is also very important in order to receive the best treatment.
Zoe concluded her talk by stressing the need to remove the stigma associated with the disease. Although dementia has a huge impact on someone’s life, as well as on their family and carers, there is practical and emotional support available to help. Accessing services and support can make a positive difference to someone with dementia and their family. Most importantly, Alzheimer’s Research UK firmly believes in the power of research to create a world free from the fear, harm and heartbreak of dementia. There is a cure for Alzheimer’s disease and the experts at Alzheimer’s Research UK are determined to find it.

There was then time for a short question and answer session before everyone enjoyed a delicious Brunch in the Giltar’s well-appointed dining room with its magnificent views of the South Beach and Caldey Island. All agreed that it had been a most worthwhile morning and were eager to help raise funds for the charity Thanks as always to Patrick, Malcolm and their staff at the Giltar for helping to make this event such a success. SI Tenby plans to hold several future charity events for Alzheimer’s Research UK, including more coffee mornings and a supper night and we welcome the continued support of the local community.

Soroptimists Support National Hate Crime Awareness and Anti-Slavery Week

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Last Tuesday SI Tenby Programme Action Officer Dr. Anne Kelly and Dyfed-Powys PCSO Rachel Adams and PCSO Paul Emmanuel joined forces at Saundersfoot’s Regency Hall in order to raise awareness of both Hate Crime and Modern-day Slavery, as 11th -18th of October was awareness week for both of these deplorable crimes.
People trafficking is the fastest growing means by which people are enslaved, the fastest growing international crime, and one of the largest sources of income for organised crime. Hate crime is defined as any criminal offence which is perceived by the victim or any other person to be motivated by hostility or prejudice based on a personal characteristic; notably, disability, race, religion or belief, sexual orientation and Trans and gender reassignment.
Dr. Kelly was joined by a staunch group of fellow Tenby Soroptimists, operating a rota system throughout the day, in order to showcase the massive amount of work undertaken by SI Tenby over the past ten years in order to raise awareness of human trafficking. This has included two highly successful Forums, a schools’ competition, the Pembrokeshire taxi sticker campaign and a sponsored walk which raised over £700 for the Salvation Army, a first response group for the victims of human trafficking and modern-day slavery. Dr. Kelly is also a representative on the Dyfed-Powys multi- agency Police Forum concerning Human trafficking.
PCSO Rachel Adams and PCSO Paul Emmanuel were also in attendance throughout the day to give information and distribute fact sheets about hate crime. Hate crime affects all communities and, if not tackled, can lead to the isolation and victimisation of individuals and vulnerable groups along with the polarisation of communities. The message was clear: If you become a victim of hate crime or know someone who has been, please come forward and report it.
A large number of people visited the two displays and, hopefully, this has raised awareness of hate crime and modern-day slavery and helped to eradicate both crimes within our community.

SI Tenby and District – Report for Gleanings – July 2015

It has been a busy start to the summer months for newly elected Presidents Rosemary Proctor and Wendy Bell. After all the exhilaration of the Diamond Celebration it was business as usual and time to launch an exciting new programme of meetings, events and programme action projects. The first Business Meeting in May also allowed members to reflect on the highly successful Friendship Day organised by SI Port Talbot. The theme was Fair Trade and club members enjoyed the various talks and workshops, as well as visiting the craft stalls. Seven club members also attended the Regional Meeting in May held in Nantgaredig.
SI Tenby’s first Speaker meeting in May was well attended and members listened to a fascinating talk given by Sergeant Keith Gibby on the role of police dogs. The dog section has become an irreplaceable and vital asset to the policing team, and it seems that these loyal companions look set to continue their success well into the future of the force. Among the skills that the dogs employ are tracing and searching for criminals from crimes, the recovery of articles, locating missing persons, attendance at large scale disorders and public relations activities such as school visits. Everyone concurred that it had been a most informative and interesting evening.
However, it has also been a time of sorrow as President Wendy’s husband sadly passed away on May 20th. Everyone in the Club offers her their heart-felt condolences. President Wendy however insisted that the June Business Meeting and subsequent Supper Evening still went ahead. The meeting commenced with a Minute’s Silence in memory of Gordon.
Everyone was delighted to see President Wendy back in the chair at the July Business Meeting, supported of course by President Rosemary. President Rosemary and Elanor Sanderson (standing in for Wendy) had recently attended the Tenby Lions Club 38th Annual Charter Dinner at the Giltar Hotel and were able to report back on a wonderful meal and an opportunity to appreciate the outstanding work and commitment that the Lions give to Tenby. Dr. Anne Kelly was then able to give feedback from her involvement with the Dyfed Powys Police Trafficking Forum and her attendance at an anti-trafficking meeting held in Cardiff. All agreed that more needed to be done in Wales to raise awareness of this escalating problem.
Also on the agenda was the SI Wales South’s Garden Tea, to be held at the National Botanic Garden of Wales on Saturday August 15th. SI Tenby will be taking part with a stall displaying the club’s recent Programme action projects, including FGM and Modern Day Slavery. Tickets for the Garden Tea cost £10 and are available from SI Tenby Secretary Dr. Sonia Evans. The cost includes entrance to the gardens and an afternoon tea. Dame Rosemary Butler AM will open the event and all proceeds, including the raffle, will be donated to the Salvation Army, BAWSO and New Pathways – the First Responders associated with victims of human trafficking.
The newly formed Social Committee, chaired by President Rosemary, will meet at the Giltar Hotel on Monday July 13th at 2.45pm to discuss arrangements for the Club’s summer outing to Cardigan Castle on August 5th and to finalise plans for the Iron Man Coffee Morning to be held in September. New members are always welcome at the monthly meetings, held at 7.30pm on the first Tuesday of each month at the Giltar Hotel, or to any of our speaker evenings.

Tenby Soroptimists welcome two new Presidents

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SI Tenby and District held their annual Handover Dinner at the Giltar Hotel at the end of April. President Dr. Anne Kelly was delighted to pass on the role to Wendy Bell and Rosemary Proctor who have agreed to share the responsibility for the coming year. SI Tenby was also pleased to welcome Margaret Jones, President of Tenby Inner Wheel, and Founder member Margaret Hughes as their guests at the Dinner. Members and guests enjoyed a delicious meal in the Giltar’s elegant dining room with its wonderful views of The South Beach and Caldey Island.
Afterwards President Anne reflected on her hectic year of office, culminating in the highly successful celebration of the Club’s Diamond Jubilee which was also held at the Giltar Hotel. She also recalled some of the more entertaining ventures, such as the Film Night in aid of The Harriet Davis Trust, the Festival of Puddings, and the many coffee mornings, as well as the more serious events; for example, the sponsored walk to raise awareness of human trafficking, all of which raised considerable amounts for both local and national charities. Most importantly, she paid tribute to the hard work undertaken by all members, notably through programme action, and their continued campaign to raise awareness of Modern-day slavery and FGM. Finally, she wished Presidents Wendy and Rosemary every success in the forthcoming year.

 

Six Decades of Soroptimism in Tenby: SI Tenby’s Diamond Jubilee

The inaugural Meeting of SI Tenby and District took place at the Candy Cafe on February 15th 1955. Mrs Margaret Hughes is our only remaining Founder Member. We have always been involved in Fund-raising activities to help support Tenby’s many charitable organisations. Here are some of our key achievements locally over the past six decades.
1950’s
The most important project concerned housing – the Club raised £1,000 in memory of the Founder President Miss Phyllis Howell. The Club then joined the Soroptimist housing Association. The Club then joined the Soroptimist Housing Association and purchased a plot of land in Heywood Lane in order to build two bungalows.
1960’s
The bungalows were completed and soon occupied by two lady tenants employed in professional work in the town. The Club also joined the Tenby Town Rota for ‘Meals on Wheels’.
1970’s
The Club beautified the Castle Sands Garden by planting shrubs and placing seats in memory of two club members. The Club also paid the fare for a holiday by ‘Jumbulance’ for a severely disabled patient in Tenby Cottage Hospital. SI member Miss Mavis Owen al founded and, for many subsequent years, presided over the Friends of the Community who do such sterling work supporting the District Nurses and other medical needs in the neighbourhood.
1980’s
SI President Mrs Nesta Williams was able to present a cheque for 3,000 to the Stackpole Project for the Disabled. A cheque for £500 was also sent to the Raise-a-Laser Wales Campaign for the treatment of cervical cancer.
1990’s
The Club raised a considerable amount of money in order to help furnish the newly opened Harriet Davis House in Tenby Harbour.
2000’s
Large amounts were raised for a variety of local and national charities including The Paul Sartori Foundation, Arthritis Research Wales, Age Cymru and Ty Hafan.

 

 

Soroptimists Fashion Show Success for Paul Sartori

October 2012

On Sunday, November 18th, nearly one hundred fashionistas gathered at the Giltar Hotel in order to enjoy SI Tenby’s annual Victorian Tea and Fashion Show in aid of the Paul Sartori Foundation.  This charity is unique to Pembrokeshire and offers support and care to those living with life-threatening illnesses.

SI Tenby was delighted to welcome SI Regional President Pam Allinson as their guest for the afternoon. Whilst the elegant models showcased a range of designer clothing from the ‘Style’ department of the Paul Sartori retail outlet in Haverfordwest, the audience enjoyed a seemingly never-ending array of delicious cakes, pastries and savouries accompanied by unlimited cups of good Welsh tea.

The models expertly strode amongst the guests, whilst SI Tenby President Judy Brew provided an entertaining commentary on the varied and stylish outfits on display, including designer labels such as Jacques Vert, Gerry Weber and Gina Bacconi, as well as High Street favourites such as Monsoon, Next and Marks and Spencer.

The audience was suitably dazzled by the models’ chic attire and by their immaculate hair creations.  These were all the work of Jamie, representing Jamies Hairdressing Salon in Warren Street.  Everyone was also duly impressed with the quality and affordability of the clothing and a large number of items were sold at the end of the show.

The combined profit from ticket sales, the raffle and the sale of clothing raised nearly £8oo for the Paul Sartori Foundation. SI Tenby would like to thank all those who helped to make the afternoon such a success, including of course the models, especially our younger co-opted members, Jamie for the superb hair styles, the excellent Master of Ceremonies, President Judy and, most of all, Fund-Raising Committee Chairpersons Jenny Deverson and Jan Griffiths for all their hard work in co-ordinating and organising the event.

All agreed that it had been a most enjoyable and worthwhile way to wile away a grey November afternoon in the luxurious surroundings of the Giltar Hotel.  Finally, and most importantly, grateful thanks are extended to Malcolm, Patrick and their staff for helping to make the occasion such a resounding success.

Tenby Soroptimists meet Simon Hart MP in Westminster

February 2013

President Judy and almost all of her fellow club mates visited the Houses of Parliament during the half term break. The group were sponsored by local MP Simon Hart and enjoyed a fascinating tour of the Palace of Westminster, originally the home of kings and queens before the Norman Conquest, and one of London’s most iconic landmarks. They were accompanied by the very knowledgeable Patrick, who gave a most informative commentary as the group travelled along the visitor route, including interesting glimpses of the Norman Porch, the Royal Gallery, the House of Lords Chamber, the Peers Lobby and Corridor, Commons Corridor, Division Lobby, House of Commons Chamber, St. Stephen’s Hall and Westminster Hall.

Afterwards the group met for coffee with Simon Hart and were able to discuss, amongst other things, recent parliamentary initiatives to combat human trafficking and slavery, as this is still very much at the forefront of SI Tenby’s Programme Action agenda. Simon Hart provisionally agreed to take part in a second SI Tenby Forum on trafficking, following on from the very well attended debate held in 2011.   Other representatives from the wider community, including the new Police Commissioner Christopher Salmon and Pat Duke, Assistant Director at Barnardo’s Cymru, have already offered to participate in  this important event.  The Forum will be coordinated by SI Tenby Programme Action Officer Dr. Anne Kelly and is scheduled to take place this autumn.

SI Tenby then took pleasure in a two day stay in London at Number 63, the Soroptimists’ Residential Club in Bayswater.  This allowed time for a lunch-time trip to Covent Garden, some essential shopping and, in the evening, a pre-theatre supper at the sumptuous Savoy Grill and the opportunity to see the World Premiere Production of Irving Berlin’s ‘Top Hat’ at the Aldwych Theatre in the West End. The dazzling company showcased such famous musical numbers as ‘Puttin’ on the Ritz’, ‘Cheek to Cheek’, ‘Let’s Face the Music and Dance’ and, of course, the eponymous ‘Top Hat’.  A most enjoyable time was had by all and thanks are extended to President Judy Brew for making the visit such a resounding success.

 

St Teilo’s Support Soroptimist Alcohol Awareness Campaign

March 2013

On Friday, November 23rd, SI Tenby’s Programme Action Officer, Dr. Anne Kelly, accompanied by fellow club members Mary Fleming and Lindsay Oeppen, were delighted to present pupils in Class 4 at St Teilo’s School with prizes and certificates for their entries in the SI Wales South poster competition. The competition forms part of an on-going regional project aimed at raising awareness of the dangers of alcohol abuse particularly amongst underage drinkers. It was particularly fitting to make the presentation at the start of Alcohol Awareness Week.

The varied and colourful posters all carried an important message for young people: ‘Say No to Alcohol.’ Every one of the participants received a certificate from SI Tenby, and three; namely, Charlotte Tebbutt, Ben Wright and Henry Hunt, were also awarded gift vouchers as their posters were judged to have the most impact on teenagers.  However, all thirteen posters will now be entered into the second round, when they will be competing with schools from across SI Wales South.  SI Tenby wish St Teilo’s every success in the next stage of the competition.

After the presentations,   Dr Kelly was able to give pupils a brief insight into the work of Soroptimist International and its mission to inspire action and transform lives. She was also delighted to present Mrs Angela Nicholls with a donation to St Teilo’s School Fund in recognition of her support for the competition.

 

Soroptimists attend Prize-Giving Event in Cardiff

May 2013

SI Tenby’s Programme Action Officer Dr Anne Kelly, accompanied by two fellow club members, recently attended the presentation of prizes for the SI Wales South Regional Poster Competition at the iconic Pierhead Building in Cardiff Bay. 

The competition, held earlier in the year, was part of a regional initiative to raise awareness of the dangers of alcohol abuse, particularly amongst young people.  Local school from across South Wales participated, including St Teilo’s in Tenby.  Their entry in the Primary category was highly commended, but the overall winner in the 9 – 11 group was a pupil from Coed-y-Garn School in Abertillery.  First in the 11 – 13 group was a student from Dwr-y-Felin Comprehensive in Neath, as was the winning entry in the 12 – 14 category. However, the overall winning poster, which will be used in SI Wales South’s campaign to spread the message of being ‘Alcohol Wise’, was Tara Gulwell of Bryn Hafren, Barry.

Jane Hutt, Assembly Member and Finance Minister, sponsored the event and presented the prizes.  She was very impressed both with the quality of the posters and the important message they conveyed to young people.

SI Tenby and District would like to thank St Teilo’s School for supporting this noteworthy competition. The club also continues to support Tenby Youth Club with their ‘Stay Safe’ project and hope to attend a presentation of certificates at the Youth Centre later this month.

 

Tenby Soroptimists Champion Anti- Slavery Day

October 2012

SI Tenby and District has launched a poster campaign, initiated by Programme Action Secretary Dr. Anne Kelly, to coincide with Anti-Slavery Day on October 18th.  This occasion is a focal point for raising awareness of the many people, both in the UK and around the world, who continue to be trapped in modern slavery, and to promote the need for individuals and organisations across society to play a part in ending it. It is championed by Anti-Slavery International which, founded in 1839, is the world’s oldest international human rights organisation and the only charity in the United Kingdom to work exclusively against slavery.

The Anti-Slavery Day was introduced in Parliament as a Private Members Bill by Anthony Steen, then MP for Totnes, and passed through both Houses unopposed. It   became law in 2010. The Act defines modern-day slavery as child exploitation, forced labour, domestic servitude and trafficking for sexual exploitation. United Nations figures suggest that 800,000 people are trafficked annually in one form or another; indeed there are more people in slavery today than in the entire history of the Transatlantic Slave trade, and 1 in 8 of those is in Europe. Human trafficking is the second largest source of illegal income worldwide, exceeded only by drugs trafficking.

SI Tenby has worked tirelessly for many year to raise awareness of human trafficking, including running competitions within Tenby’s family of schools, organising Forums, participating in national debates and, more recently, liaising closely with local MPs Simon Hart and Stephen Crabbe in order to put pressure on government and local authorities and so address the problems arising from human trafficking. The Club’s visit to Westminster next February will also provide an opportunity to discuss this issue, hopefully with representatives from the All Party Parliamentary group on Human Trafficking.

Human trafficking is a particularly difficult crime to identify and prevent. Low levels of public understanding mean that the police cannot rely on trafficking being reported. It is hoped that the many posters on display will encourage our local community to champion Anti-Slavery Day and be inspired to help eliminate modern day slavery.

 

 

SI Tenby and SI Cheltenham enjoy the Brecon Flower Festival

August 2012

On Wednesday, August 16th President Judy and nine other club members travelled to Brecon, in order to meet up with their link club, SI Cheltenham, and attend the festival of Flowers in Brecon Cathedral. The Festival’s theme was Gloria, short for the Latin phrase “Gloria in excelsis Deo” – “Glory to God in the Highest” – the title of one of the Church’s earliest hymns.  It was also a fitting reflection of Great Britain’s success in hosting the Olympic and Paralympics Games.

Designers and arrangers from across the Three Counties and South Wales area of the National Association of Flower Arrangement Societies had done a superb job, reflecting “Gloria” in an amazing abundance of displays, over 100 in total. It was a real privilege to see the beautiful cathedral come alive with flowers, fragrance, fellowship and fun. A spectacular entry in the South Aisle entitled “He is risen!” attracted considerable attention as it had involved the hard work of two of SI Tenby’s members, Jan Griffiths and Wendy Bell.

After a very pleasant two hours viewing the wonderful floral designs everyone enjoyed a delicious lunch at the Cider Mill near Crickhowell. All agreed that it had been a most worthwhile day, enabling both clubs to renew friendships and share ideas.

 

 

Tenby Soroptimists support Age Cymru at the Sennedd

January 2013

President Judy, Programme Action secretary Dr Anne Kelly, Links Secretary Iris Davies and Press Secretary Lindsay Oeppen attend a Gala Dinner at the Hilton Hotel in Cardiff, when Dr Kelly was nominated for a prestigious award for her work for Age Cymru.

On June 14th Dr Anne Kelly, SI Tenby Programme Action Officer, accompanied by three fellow club members, met with Gwenda Thomas, Deputy Minister for Social Services, as well as representatives from Age Cymru, on the front steps of the Sennedd in order to present a petition in support of the Rule Out Abuse Charter. Dr Kelly was one of three individuals in Wales to gather the most signatures in support of the Charter.

The Rule out Abuse Charter is spear-headed by Age Cymru and is founded upon three key principles to protect the elderly in Wales. These are; firstly, to prioritise safety, secondly, to protect from harm and respect choices and thirdly to promote the right to dignity and respect. Wales has the highest prevalence of elder abuse in the UK, with a rate of 6%, compared with 4’3% in Scotland, 3.9% in England and 3% in Northern Ireland. The campaign calls upon the Welsh Government to endorse the charter and take decisive action to implement a robust legal framework which ensures every adult in Wales is protected from abuse.

Thanks to Dr Kelly’s efforts, Tenby Soroptimists were privileged to be part of this important campaign event at the National Assembly for Wales. Afterwards they enjoyed refreshments in the Sennedd and an opportunity to have a tour the building.

 

 SI Tenby Support Ty Hafan

June 2013

Last Tuesday SI Tenby and District President, Elanor Sanderson, was delighted to welcome Priscilla Bowden as Guest Speaker at the monthly Business Meeting at the Giltar Hotel.  Priscilla is the West Wales Business and Community Fundraiser for Ty Hafan.  She gave a most informative and moving insight into the work of this unique charity.

Approximately sixty children are born every year in Wales with life-limiting illnesses. Ty Hafan offers comfort, care and respite for these children and their families. The Hospice is in Sully and is a very happy, uplifting and inspirational place. It also offers support groups for siblings, Dads and Mums. Ty Hafan is committed to being more than a hospice and reaches right into the heart of the family home. This care is given completely free of charge to the families in Wales who need it.

The charity was founded by Suzanne Goodall who spearheaded a fund-raising campaign that lasted eleven years and, in 1999, Ty Hafan finally opened its doors.  Suzanne, from Beddau near Pontypridd, continued to play an active role in Ty Hafan until her retirement at ninety in 2011. She is a remarkable lady who has helped hundreds of life-limited children, young people and their families across Wales through the charity she started – Ty Hafan. Since 1999 the charity has helped over 400 families, providing palliative care, relief and support within the hospice, at home and in the community to ensure that each child has a comprehensive care programme.

 It costs 3 million pounds a year to run Ty Hafan. There is much celebrity support for the Hospice; for example, the Cardiff Devils, the Welsh Rugby Squad and Welsh media personalities. In addition, a number of charity events take place throughout the year, including Family Fun Day, Midnight Sleepwalk, Taff Trail Cycle Ride and Chef’s Night Out, as well as numerous local events such as those organised by SI Tenby.  There are always on-going projects to help improve facilities – at present they are refurbishing the Play Area and improving the Communal Kitchen.

Priscilla concluded her talk with the following statement: ‘Ty Hafan is delighted to be supported by Soroptimist International, Tenby – an inspirational group who take action for positive change for women and girls worldwide.  It is a pleasure working together and we are very much looking forward to future fund-raising events in aid of Ty Hafan, the family hospice for young lives’. President Elanor Sanderson then thanked Priscilla for her enlightening talk. Thanks were also extended to Patrick, Malcolm and their staff at the Giltar Hotel yet again for the excellent venue and warm welcome.

 SI Tenby is holding a concert featuring Tenby Male Voice Choir, at 7.30pm on August 1st at St Mary’s Church, in aid of Ty Hafan, The Club looks forward to your support for this very worthwhile charity.

 

 Tenby Soroptimists in Coastal Path Charity Walk

May 2013

 

On Saturday 18th May, Soroptimist International Tenby took part in the SI Wales Region South Coastal Path Charity Walk, from Newport in the east to Aberystwyth in the west. Five members of the Club, all of whom are regular walkers, completed the section of the walk designated to Tenby. This section stretched from St. Govan’s Head to Tenby. Fortunately, it was a brilliantly sunny day with just enough breeze to keep everyone feeling comfortable. The views were absolutely terrific in the bright sunlight. However, the sightseeing did not detract from our progress and the walk was finished without mishap in very good time.

 

Unfortunately, the previous week, whilst timing and planning this walk, one of our most experienced walker members, Mrs Mary Fleming, despite having taken all necessary precautions for the walk, fell and badly fractured her ankle on the cliff path at Swanlake Bay . Fortunately for her, she was firstly attended to by some passing walkers, one of whom happened to be a medical doctor, well experienced in orthopaedic injuries. Next, the coastal rescue team arrived and, with great kindness and efficiency managed to immobilise her injury and transport her by stretcher over some very difficult terrain, to a waiting ambulance.

 

Soroptimist International Tenby wish to convey our grateful thanks both to the doctor, John Pratt, his wife, who ran to summon help because of a lack of phone signals, and Mr. Mike Day and his wonderful team of coastal rescuers – all of whom give of their time freely and selflessly on a voluntary basis. Also, thanks must go to an unknown couple who also stopped to see if they could be of assistance and actually donated a very new jacket to help make Mary more comfortable as she waited to be rescued. If either of them reads this article and would like to contact Tenby Soroptimists at https://sigbi.org/tenby we can arrange for return of the jacket.

 

Proceeds from the sponsorship money received by the walkers will go to two charities, firstly, the BIG Charity [Birthing International Gambia] a Regional project to build and equip a new maternity hospital in the Gambia which will contribute to reducing the very high infant and maternal mortality rates in the area. Secondly, half of the money is to go to a charity of  SI Tenby’s choice.  President Elanor has chosen Ty Hafan as the receptor.

 

 Soroptimist’s  Fantastic Festival of Puddings

                                                                                          October 2013

 

Last Friday evening over fifty Soroptimists, friends and relations gathered at the Giltar Hotel for a gastronomic feast of puddings, all in aid of local charities. President Elanor welcomed the guests and was also delighted to see founder member Margaret Hughes at the event.

Talented chef Philip and his team excelled themselves, producing a never-ending array of delicious sweet and savoury delights, to include mini Yorkshire puddings, dainty chicken nests, succulent miniature St Clements sponges and sticky toffee puddings, elegant glasses of chilled melon soup, petite passion fruit pavlovas and delicate cups filled with crème brulee – a banquet fit for a king.

During the meal the raffle was drawn and an impressive selection of prizes was distributed.  This netted a substantial amount and, combined with proceeds from the ticket sales, raised nearly £300 for the various charities.

The evening concluded with a variety act presented by the Giltar’s very own Claudio.  His many skilful tricks with golf balls proved to be highly entertaining and provided a fitting finish to this fantastic Festival of Puddings.

SI Tenby would like to thank fellow Soroptimist Pam Maggs for all her hard work in organising the Festival. Thanks, as always, are also extended to Patrick, Malcolm and their staff for helping to make the evening such a resounding success.