Soroptimist International Tenby and District Programme Action Activities.
Programme Action Officer: Dr. Anne Kelly
Soroptimist International Tenby and District is part of a vibrant, dynamic voluntary organisation committed to a world where women and girls achieve their collective and individual potential, realise aspirations and have an equal voice in creating strong, and peaceful communities world wide.
1.1 Through international partnerships and a global network of members,
Soroptimists inspire action and create opportunities to transform the
lives of women by :-
- Ø Advocating equity and equality
- Ø Creating safe and healthy environments
- Ø Increasing access to education
- Ø Developing leadership and practical skills for a sustainable future
Our Club at Tenby is involved in many Programme Action activities
- Ø Anti-Slavery/Trafficking/ Grooming Activities
Tenby SI’s programme to combat modern day slavery and trafficking began in 2007 with an event [a film premier of ‘Amazing Grace’] to raise awareness of the fact, that despite it being the bi -centenary of the abolition of the Slave Trade Act,  the heinous crime persists. The event received much local publicity
- Ø In 2008, a competition was organised to sustain the momentum of our awareness raising activities. This competition involved all schools within the area. Children were requested to submit works of literacy or art on the subject of ‘Modern Day Slavery’.
- Ø In 2009, entries to the competition were exhibited in the local museum, throughout the whole of August. They were viewed by many holiday visitors to the town of Tenby.
- Ø In September, 2009 a presentation of prizes to prize winners took place at the Tenby Museum. Prizes were presented by Mrs. Joyce Watson AM. The event was attended by representatives of all local organisations that had provided sponsorship for the activities. These consisted of Chevron International, several local businesses, the local press, school staff, parents and children. It was a truly collaborative event
- Ø During October and November 2009, the work of the winning entrants was collated into a booklet, entitled ‘Modern Day Slavery’. This was sold in aid of the charities BAWSO Wales and Anti – Slavery International.
- Ø 7.6 In December 2009, the booklet was launched at The National Assembly for Wales, by Mrs Joyce Watson AM. The event was attended by the Minister for Children Mrs. Gwenda Thomas, and many other AMs,. representatives of Anti-Slavery International, BAWSO, the police, the press, children from Tenby and District and their parents, also, the Regional President of Soroptimist International and SI members
- Ø The President and Programme Action Officer SI Tenby were interviewed about the event on BBC Wales
- Ø .In 2010, SI Tenby, gave several presentations of their work to other SI clubs in the Region and The Welsh Women’s Institute.
- Ø In October 2010, SI Tenby were invited to give a presentation of their work at the Annual Soroptimist Conference, held at the new Convention Centre, Manchester. The invitation to make this presentation was a fantastic achievement for Tenby Soroptimists, as their work was chosen from the entries of 362 clubs, both in the UK and overseas. SI Tenby were delighted to also receive an international award for the quality of their work. In particular, collaboration with the Welsh Assembly Government, the police force of Newport Gwent, national and local organisations and communities was commended. [This was the second such award to SI Tenby, the first being for their work in campaigning against Female Genital Mutilation]
- Ø In 2011, SI Tenby visited BAWSO Wales at Cardiff to present them with a cheque to support their work with trafficked women. A cheque was also sent to Anti- Slavery International. Monies involved came from the sale of booklets.
- Ø Later in 2011 SI Tenby were invited to take part in a forum on trafficking held by SI Haverfordwest. Other speakers included Stephen Crabbe, MP, Joyce Watson, AM, Port and Police officials.
- Ø Also in 2011, SI Tenby provided a poster presentation on Modern Day Slavery and Trafficking at The Maritime Museum Swansea, as part of SI Wales South ‘s celebration of International Women’s Day.
- Ø Throughout 2011, SI Tenby has worked collaboratively with Dyfed Powys police and Barnardo’s Cymru to research the extensiveness of problems related to trafficking and slavery.
- Ø The final event of 2011 was a forum held at Tenby, to which local MPs, AMS, civic dignitaries, representatives from the area Child Protection Committee, police, education health, social services, churches, other organisations, SI clubs and the Regional Committee of Soroptimist Wales South were invited. Speakers at this meeting raised awareness not only of ‘Modern Day Slavery and Trafficking, but also of the escalating crimes of ‘internal trafficking’ and ‘ internet grooming’. The forum was held in collaboration with Dyfed Powys Police and Barnardo’s Cymru.
- Ø During 2012 SI Tenby continued to work with Barnardo’s Cymru and police contacts, schools, young people and other organisations to raise awareness and campaign for the abolition of trafficking and all form of Slavery.
- Ø Also in 2012 Tenby SI entertained MP Stephen Crabbe to tea at the Giltar Hotel, Tenby, the purpose of this meeting was to lobby for his support. He was told that Although much has been accomplished there is no room for complacency until modern day forms of slavery, trafficking, both ‘international’ and ‘internal’, as well as e-crime and grooming are banished. The detrimental effects of these include:-
- Ø Increased risk to physical and emotional well being
- Ø Poor long term outcomes
- Ø Lost opportunities for education, employment and the chance of making a full contribution to society.
- Ø Increased risk of violent crime
- Ø A continuing drain on the countries finances.
Since our efforts legislation to prevent trafficking has passed through Parliament
Other activities during the course of the year consisted of a campaign to assist Age Cymru’s lobbying against the abuse of older people. As a result of our efforts we were invited to the Senedd to present petitions to AM Gwenda Thomas. Following the presentation the AM promised action on the issue.. We have recently heard that as a result of our efforts in this venture we have been nominated for the Campaigners of the Year Award.
Finally, in December 2012, the Club took part in a Regional Competition to increase awareness of the dangers of alcohol for young people. Again we invited local schools to take part. There were commendable entries from our local Roman Catholic Junior School, these were submitted to the Regional Competition, but prizes were awarded to local winners. Also, in relation to preventing alcohol abuse, we are supporting educational activities of the local Youth Group.
Our next key event is a Forum on Human Trafficking and Modern-day slavery, to be held at Ysgol Greenhill School on October 18th, 2013.
We have many plans for 2014 and hope that it will be a successful year