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Soroptimist International - Trinidad and Tobago

Soroptimist International of Trinidad and Tobago is part of a worldwide organisation of women, which is linked to the United Nations.

Welcome to SI Trinidad and Tobago

Follow us on:
Twitter:
@SoroptimistTT
Facebook:
@Soroptimist International of Trinidad and Tobago

 

SITT National Association extends congratulations and best wishes to Professor Rose-Mary Belle-Antoine, inducted as the first female principal of U.W.I., St. Augustine Campus

 

SITT National Association extends congratulations and best wishes to SI Couva on the occasion of their 1st Anniversary. Keep up the good work Sisters.

SITT National Association extends congratulations and best wishes to Dr. Nneka St.Rose and Dr.Kyra Mc Gowan Santana of SI Newtown on achieving the award of their Doctoral Degrees.

CELEBRATING 64 YEARS OF FRIENDSHIP AND SERVICE

SITT National Association extends congratulations and best wishes to the Members of SI Port of Spain on the occasion of their 64th anniversary. 64 years of service to the community is indeed a memorable occasion. Keep up the good work SIPOS

FAREWELL TO PHYLLIS GONSALVES

SITT National Association extends heartfelt condolences to the family, friends and Soroptimist Sisters on the passing of Phyllis Gonsalves on the 20th of December 2022 She was a long-standing member of SI San Fernando who served the club for the last 40 years. May she rest in peace.

"A special smile, a special face
In our hearts, a special place,
Memories are a gift to treasure
Ours of you, will last forever’
Today our Club is saddened by the passing of our dear & wonderful Phyllis Gonsalves.
May holy angels lead you forth to paradise,
And may the martyrs greet your coming home.
May you find welcome there within God’s dwelling-place,
The radiant city, New Jerusalem."

SITT National Association extends congratulations and best wishes to Dr. Nneka St.Rose and Dr.Kyra Mc Gowan Santana of SI Newtown on achieving the award of their Doctoral Degree.

Human Rights Day is observed by the international community every year on 10 December. It commemorates the day in 1948 the United Nations General Assembly adopted the Universal Declaration of Human Rights.

 

SITT National Association extends “Happy Anniversary” Greetings and best wishes to SI Esperance on the occasion of their 4th anniversary. Keep up the good work SIE Sisters.

Members of Soroptimist International Esperance gathered to #OrangeTheWorld. They are creating awareness of the issues of violence against women, advocating for change, and taking action to alleviate the problems.

SI Chaguanas assists Sri Dattatreya Yoga Centre 

SI Chaguanas members spent a serviceful Saturday morning prepping vegetables and boxing meals in association with the Sri Dattatreya Yoga Centre at Orangefield Road, Carapichaima.

600 meals were prepared for donation to those who were affected by the recent floods which devastated several areas in Trinidad and Tobago.

#Soroptimists #SoroptimistsAtWork

#soroptimistservice #doingourpart #TrinidadFlooding

SIPOS UNITES with RCS in solidarity with those affected by GBV 

SI Port of Spain UNITED with the Rape Crisis Society of Trinidad and Tobago (RCS) in a Candlelight Vigil on Sunday 4th December 2022 in solidarity with all the women and girls affected by gender-based violence.

Prior to the walk speeches were given by RCS President, Marion Taylor, and Project Manager, Kimiko Scott. Guest Speaker was Nadella Oya, founder and CEO of Createfuturegood.

A poem entitled “This Woman” was read by 2 of the RCS administration staff which reflected different women and how they conceal their abuse that they have experienced.

#OrangeTheWorld   #EndGenderBaseViolence    #UNITEagainstGBV

Glitz and Glamour 

A celebration of 60 years

SI San Fernando held their 60th Anniversary celebration on the 3rd of December 2022 at Achievors Banquet Hall.

This was a fabulous and spectacular event which was well attended and thoroughly enjoyed by all. Everyone looked beautiful and glamorous in their various combinations of black and white outfits.

Two of the longest serving persons who were members when the club was chartered 60 years ago, Elsa Ferguson and Dorothy Callender (standing from left to right) each reach receive a bouquet of flowers from the club presented by Mayor of San Fernando, His Worship Junia Regrello.

Congratulations to all the members of SISF and many thanks to all who supported this milestone and memorable event.

 

Safe Spaces-Shifting the conversation from awareness to accountability

Unhealthy expectations of young men and boys, including emotional suppression as well as the validation of ‘anger’ as one of the few emotions boys are allowed to express freely, are all directly linked to gender-based violence and sexual harrassment.

Gender-based violence is fueled largely by the harmful ideas and attitudes peddled to young boys about who they should be. SI Anaparima had conversations with the youths of the Cocoyea and Bayshore Police Youth Clubs in the hope that this bunch might learn it right the first time.

#Endviolenceagainstwomenandgirls
#Detenerlaviolenciacontralasmujeresylasninas
#respectwomen
#endgbv
#orangetheworld

SI San Fernando, with the support and assistance of San Fernando Mayor Junia Regrello, lit the San Fernando City Hall in orange, joining with others worldwide in recognizing the International Day for the Elimination of Violence against Women and as a representation of a brighter future, free from violence against women and girls.

#stopviolenceagainstwomen #respectwomen #orangetotheworld #sisanfernando

16 days of activism aims to increase awareness globally of violence against women and girls (VAWG) which is one of the most widespread, persistent and devastating human rights in the world today and remains largely unreported due to the impunity, silence, stigma and shame surrounding it; also, to promote advocacy and create opportunities for discussion on challenges and solutions. On the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women, the color orange is used to represent a brighter future, free from violence against women and girls.

Members of SITT National Association join other Soroptimists across the world in calling for the Elimination of Violence against Women

#stopviolenceagainstwomen #detenerlaviolencecontralasmujeres #RespectWomen #SITTstandsinsolidaritytoorangetheworld2022

Soroptimist International Couva
Movie Night Fundraiser
Date: 28th December 2022. 
Time:- 6 p.m.
Venue: Estate 101, Saddle Road (opposite Massy Stores)

Save the date!!!!

 

Congratulations to  SI Esperance who won the SI Great Britain and Ireland (SIGBI) October Photo of the Month.

Their project “Planting Trees – Hope for the Future” provided disadvantaged women with food-bearing trees. Club members gathered to collect the trees, which they then either planted themselves or distributed to organizations and individuals who would benefit from a constant source of food from the trees.

Well done Sisters. keep up the good work

#Soroptimist #Soroptimists #SIGBI #Women #WomenInspiringAction

SI San Fernando’s Charter Anniversary was celebrated on the 23rd November, 2022 in fine style with 2 events -lunch at Soong’s Great Wall Restaurant and after-work drinks at 519 Trinidad.

Cheers to all!!!!!

Next celebration – Gala Dinner and Dance on the 3rd December, 2022

SITT National Association extends Happy Anniversary greetings and best wishes to SI Anaparima on the occasion of their 4th anniversary. Keep up the good work ladies.

 

3  SI Clubs celebrate their 60th Anniversary

Congratulations are extended to SI San Fernando,                  SI Jamaica and SI Barbados on the auspicious occasion of the 60th anniversary of their respective charter. 60 years of dedicated service to their communities is indeed a proud moment to celebrate. Keep up the good work.

SITT National Association extends Happy Anniversary greetings and best wishes to SI Newtown on the occasion of their 12th anniversary. Keep up the good work Sister Soroptimists.

 

SITT National Association extends congratulations to the following SI Clubs who received their certificates for Best Practice Awards at the SIGBI Conference 2022. Indeed, a proud moment

SI San Fernando in the category of Partnering
Project: Partnering to Develop Digital Learners

SI St Albans & District in the category of Peace, Justice & Strong Institutions
Project: Orange the World to shine a light on Violence Against Women

SI South Kolkata in the category of Planet
Project: Mangroves Plantation

SI Grange over Sands in the category of Prosperity
Project: Fair Trade Walk for Chocolate Making Workshop for Girls in Ghana

SI Runcorn, Frodsham & District in the category of people
Project: Mastectomy Breast Care Cushions

SI San Fernando wins Best Practice Award at the SIGBI Conference 2022

Congratulations to SI San Fernando who received the Best Practice Award (BPA) in the category of Partnership at the SI Great Britain and Ireland (SIGBI) Conference 2022. This is the 3rd time consecutively that they have won the annual BPA Award and it coincides with their 60th anniversary celebrations. Well done SSIF. Indeed, a proud moment

Sandra Dieffenthaller and Renata Ramsaywak-Lalla receive the award on behalf of SISF.

Hats off to our Chevonne Agana Director Membership, SI Great Britain and Ireland (SIGBI) who gave an excellent presentation at the Conference 2022

Caribbean contingent at the SI Great Britain and Ireland (SIGBI Conference) in Belfast 2022

 

Trinidad contingent at the SI Great Britain and Ireland (SIGBI Conference) in Belfast 2022

(L-R) Chevonne Agana, Sandra Dieffenthaller, Renata Ramsaywak-Lalla and Ahhalia Ramdass

 

Nisha and Chevonne at SIGBI Conference 2022

(L-R) Nisha Ghosh, Director Public Relations & Marketing (SI Pune Metro East in India) and Chevonne Agana, Director Membership (a former President of SITT and SI Newtown, Port of Spain) exchange pleasantries at the SI Great Britain and Ireland (SIGBI) Conference 2022

Nisha paid a visit to Trinidad during the month of August and was hosted on different days by the SI Clubs in Trinidad. Her stay here in Trinidad was a lovely and memorable one as she learned more about our Soroptimist sisters, projects and country.

“Patches of Peace” Patchwork sheet in celebration of SI San Fernando 60th Anniversary

On November 23rd, 2022, Soroptimist International of San Fernando will be celebrating their 60th anniversary of charter.

Their theme is ‘Celebrating the Past, Pursuing a Peaceful Future for Women and Girls’.

They invited Soroptimist clubs around the world to join them in celebrating this milestone by contributing squares of fabric to their commemorative ‘Patches of Peace’ patchwork sheet.

Sandra Dieffenthaller and Renata Ramsaywak-Lalla collected Patches of Peace” from some of the delegates to the SI Great Britain and Ireland (SIGBI) conference which commenced today.

The sheet of patches will be displayed at their Anniversary Dinner & Dance on the 3rd of December, 2022.

Federation Programme Action Committee meeting in Belfast

Soroptimist International team from Trinidad and Tobago presented at the Federation Programme Action Committee Meeting today in Belfast.

(Sandra Dieffenthaller, Immediate Past President, SITT National Association, Ahhalia Ramdass, Vice President of SITT National Association and President of  SI Anaparima, Renata Ramsaywak-Lalla, President of SI San Fernando)

Their presentation was on “Women and Climate Change Resilience in the Caribbean”

Congratulations to the team on a job well done.

 

SI Great Britain and Ireland (SIGBI) Conference in Belfast

The 88th Conference of the SIGBI Federation will be held between 27th and 29th October at the ICC in Belfast. The 2022 Conference theme is ‘Climate for Change.’ This will be the first in-person conference since Bournemouth 2019 and Soroptimists across the Federation are looking forward to meeting in person.

World Development Information Day 

Each year the United Nations marks October 24th as World Development Information Day. This day is observed to create awareness towards the problems surrounding development in different nations and how to overcome them. The day is marked on the same day as United Nations Day, which was formed on October 24, 1945.

With many countries being burdened with insufficient resources, infrastructure, education, capacity, investment, and connectivity, World Development Information Day aims to address these issues. Spreading awareness and mobilizing public opinion to draw people’s support is one to start addressing and resolving these global problems.

Global Media and Information Literacy Week (24-31 October)

Global Media and Information Literacy (MIL) Week 2022 is observed from October 24 to October 31. UNESCO has announced the theme for this year’s MIL week as “Nurturing trust: A Media and Information Literacy Imperative

Misinformation, political polarisation, and contradictory messages create confusion and unrest among people. This is why Global Media and Information Literacy (MIL) Week was conceived with the public’s well-being and the need to empower them with the right information in mind. The initiative aims to ensure and assess progress toward Media and Information Literacy around the world. Its goal is to skilfully alleviate the difficulties associated with misinformation and a lack of information.

United Nations Day- 24th October

It was after the World War II when 51 countries from across the world came together to take an oath to preserve peace across the globe. The United Nations is a representation of these countries, and the United Nations Day is a celebration to commemorate this togetherness for promoting world peace.

SITT National Association extends warm wishes to the Hindu community on the occasion of Divali.

May the Festival of Lights bring joy, peace and prosperity.

 

Congratulations
to SI San Fernando who were awarded the SI Great Britain and Ireland (SIGBI) Best Practice Award (BPA) in the category of Partnership for the year 2022. This is the third consecutive year that they have won the BPA award and it coincides with their 60th anniversary celebrations. Indeed, a very proud moment.

SI San Fernando partnered with RSC (Restore a Sense of I Can) and CSOD (Caribbean School Of Data) to improve the digital skills of eleven young ladies. The ladies participated in a 5-course programme over a 3 month period. The courses were all self-contained but inter-related and accessed online.

Club members mentored the participants and provided moral support as they progressed through the programme which was mainly self-directed, allowing participants to work at their own pace.

Mentors reported regularly to RSC on the progress of their mentees.

All participants successfully completed the programme and submitted all assignments in a timely way. Technical assistance was provided by RSC

Sandra Diefenthaller delivers the President’s Address
at SITT’s 49th Annual General Meeting

Soroptimist International National Association of Trinidad and Tobago held its 49th Annual General Meeting on Saturday, September 17th, 2022 at 2:00 p.m. at Sky View Lounge, San Fernando.

It was a glorious return to an in-person meeting since our last AGM in 2019. All clubs were represented—SI Anaparima, SI Chaguanas, SI Couva, SI Esperance, SI Newtown, SI Port of Spain, and SI San Fernando. Despite a bit of inclement weather, it was a great turnout of members.

 

Christine Cole, the Incoming President, delivers her message at SITT’s 49th Annual General Meeting

President Sandra passes the Chain of Office
to Incoming President Christine

L-R – Marissa Bubb (Federation Consultative Councillor) Ahhalia Ramdass (Vice President) Sandra Boxill (Programme Action Committee Chairperson) Rachelle Toolsie (Honorary Treasurer) Sandra Dieffenthaller (Immediate Past President) Christine Cole (President) Gemma Casimir-Redman (Organisational Development Officer) Carolyn James (Communications Officer) Terry Amirali-Rambharat (Membership Officer)

Not in picture- Meera Gopaul (Secretary) Denise Demming (President Elect)

 

Celebrating the outstanding legacy of Justice Monica Barnes SC

We have lost another distinguished Soroptimist,
Justice Monica Barnes SC who passed away on the
10th June, 2022.

She was a dedicated and longstanding Soroptimist member of SI Port of Spain Club and the first President of the former SI St. Augustine Club when it was chartered in 1985. Last year she was bestowed with “Honorary Membership” of the Soroptimist International National Association of Trinidad and Tobago for her invaluable contribution to Soroptimism.

The National Theatre Arts Company of which Justice Monica Barnes’s sister, Belinda, is the artistic director gave the following tribute:-

“Justice Monica Barnes, SC, blazed a trail, hallmarking an outstanding legal career with stellar milestones.”

“An alumna of Bishop Anstey, Justice Monica Barnes was instrumental in the development and chartering of Soroptimist International St. Augustine, holding the position of charter President in 1985.

“Before becoming a sitting judge, Justice Monica Barnes, with the Soroptimist International, initiated the Golden Grove Women’s Prison project, preparing and empowering female prisoners for productive lives, on their release.”

One of her “most compassionate initiatives,” the prison’s Mother’s Day program, allowed children of inmates to visit on Mother’s Day – an initiative that became the catalyst for the Father’s Day program.

She brought her grace, compassion, generosity and intelligence to bear in all areas of her life, profoundly elevating the lives of those she touched, both professionally and personally.

Justice Monica Barnes was a former chairman of the Tax Appeal Board and a deputy chairman of the Integrity Commission.

She was also chief parliamentary counsel and had been a member of the Law Reform Commission, the Law Revision Commission, the Constitution Commission and the Caricom Company Law Task Force.

Her honourable legacy lives on and will never be forgotten.”

(extracted from the World News)

We extend our heartfelt condolences to her family, friends and sister Soroptimists. May she rest in peace.

 

International Women’s Day 2022

To commemorate International Women’s Day 2022, each of the seven clubs of Trinidad and Tobago produced a video entitled:

A Mother’s work is REAL. Mothering through the Pandemic.

Club videos were posted, one each day, from March 1st, leading up to International Women’s Day on March 8th, 2022

#BreakTheBias #IWD2022

Following are the videos:

SI Port of Spain:

SI Couva:

SI Esperance:

SI San Fernando:

SI Anaparima:

SI Chaguanas:

SI Newtown:

Greetings from SITT National Council 2021-2022

On Saturday, October 30th, 2021, we held our first SITT officers’ meeting of the new Federation year 2021-2022 at President Sandra’s residence. T’was a wonderful, enjojable, productive and memorable session.

Left to right (Back row standing): Julie Gouveia FergusonCommunications and Website Officer; Marissa BubbFederation Consultative Officer; Gemma Casimir-RedmanOrganisational Development Officer; Terry Amirali-RambharatMembership Officer; Susan Umraw-RoopnarinesinghProgramme Action Committee Chairperson; Rachelle ToolsieHonorary Treasurer

Left to right (Front row seated): Chevonne Agana-DuncanImmediate Past President; Christine Cole –  President Elect; Sandra DieffenthallerPresident; Hazel HassanaliHonorary Secretary

SITT buries a Time Capsule

On Wednesday, December 29th, 2021, Soroptimist International National Association of Trinidad and Tobago (SITT) buried a Time Capsule at 15 Nepaul Street, St. James.

The Time Capsule contains items from seven local Soroptimist Clubs that comprise SITT — SI Port of Spain, SI San Fernando, SI Chaguanas, SI Newtown, SI Anaparima, SI Esperance, and the proposed Club of SI Couva, which will be chartered in January 2022.

The items represent our hopes for future Soroptimists of Trinidad and Tobago, and shares memories that capture the essence of Soroptimism as it exists now in Trinidad and Tobago.

Our Time Capsule commemorates one hundred years—1921 to 2021—of Soroptimist International internationally. It will be unearthed on December 29th, 2071, fifty years from now.

Soroptimist International National Association of Trinidad and Tobago held its 48th Annual General Meeting on Saturday, September 25th, 2021 at 2:00 p.m. via Zoom. Once we were done with the business at hand, we celebrated the 100th Birthday of Soroptimist International. We raised our glasses, toasted, and lit candles making wishes for a Brilliant Future for both the organization and for the lives of women and girls around the world.

SITT’s SI Centenary Supplement

In celebration of SI’s Centenary, on Sunday, July 25th, 2021, SITT published a 24-page newspaper supplement with the Guardian Newspaper, Trinidad.

To read the entire supplement, click on the link below to access our FlipBook:

https://online.fliphtml5.com/ahemv/zzmz/

SITT La Soufrière Relief 2021 to SI St Vincent and the Grenadines
In support of those displaced by the eruption of La Soufrière volcano in St. Vincent and the Grenadines, Soroptimist International Trinidad and Tobago—SI San Fernando, SI Newtown, SI Port of Spain, SI Chaguanas, SI Anaparima—provided assistance by way of goods sent directly to SI St. Vincent who are supporting the evacuees. April 2021.

February 2021
The following letter was written, and forwarded to all media houses in Trinidad and Tobago after the brutal murder of another young woman who was kidnapped in January 2021.
Her name was Andrea Bharatt. She was 22 years old.

It is no secret that our country is experiencing increasing levels of Gender-Based Violence (GBV). As a nation, we are traumatized by the brutal killing of yet another woman. This must end!

Soroptimist International of Trinidad & Tobago—
6 clubs of women whose mandate is to act in the interest of women and girls—add our collective voice to the many other cries of outrage at the continued increase in the level of crime and violence against women.

It cannot be “business as usual” if the women of Trinidad & Tobago are to live free from fear of violence in their own lives, and those of their daughters, granddaughters, mothers, grandmothers, sisters, aunties, cousins,
nieces and friends.

We call on each individual and every family unit to take some time for introspection. See how you may be part of the problem and how you will be part of the solution. We ask that our girls be brought up to expect and demand respect and full ownership of their bodies. We advocate for our boys to be raised to see women as equals, to understand consent, and to resist the objectification of our bodies. Stop catcalling women, unwelcome touches, degrading jokes,
and victim-blaming.

We call on religious bodies and communities to provide safe spaces and programs for our men to learn healthy behaviours. We call on our brothers to hold one another accountable and to be our allies as we stand up for women.

We call on our entertainers to consider the attitudes and behaviours your lyrics may be promoting, and choose not to contribute to women being viewed merely as objects of pleasure.

We call on our government to break the silence against GBV. We urge you to present a transparent plan with frequent updates to combat and win this war against the safety and security of the women of Trinidad and Tobago. We cry out for swift justice to perpetrators of violence against women. We look to you, our leaders, to drive the change from the top.

We know the solution to this problem goes beyond awareness, and so we commit to doing our part as we together work towards the reduction of gender-based violence in our country.

SITT delivers computers to schools

SI Trinidad and Tobago’s National Association delivered four (4) computers to two (2) schools in Trinidad and Tobago in January 2021—Holy Faith Convent, Penal, and ASJA Girls College, San Fernando.

March 2021, will be one full year schools have been closed in Trinidad and Tobago due to this global pandemic—COVID-19. Our students continue to struggle with hardware/software and internet connectivity issues. SITT Executive members, Marissa, and Rachelle handed over the computers to the school’s principals and students.

Recent Activity, Moments, and Highlights

31 October, 2020 – President Sandra’s Residence

A truly lovely afternoon, as the new SITT Executive met for the first time in person after being thoroughly Zoomed-out. Great food, great fun, great memories, great meeting. Of course, all Covid-19 protocols were observed.