Joint presidents Pat and Jenny present Chloe Jay with her £100 prize as the winner of our Quiz in aid of food bags for Trinity House. Chloe had the highest score with 112 out of 127 – but she told us she is a seasoned quiz winner! Sales of the quiz totalled £640, exceeding our target and ensuring a continuing supply of food bags for Trinity House. click for list of answers: answers
Update: We raised £201.54 which we took along to the Regional Meeting on 14th June. On World Water Day members of SI Winchester pledged to contribute to Water Aid in line with their own water usage during the month of April. Here is the tariff.
World Book Night is a celebration of reading and books which sees tens of thousands of passionate volunteers hand out specially chosen and printed WBN books in their communities to share their love of reading. By enlisting thousands of passionate book lovers around the country World Book Night reaches out to the millions of people in the UK who have yet to fall in love with reading in the hope of starting them on their reading journey. World Book Night is about giving books and encouraging reading in those who don’t regularly do so. But it is also about more than that: it’s about people, communities and connections, about reaching out to others and touching lives in the simplest of ways, through the sharing of stories. Club members, Jennifer Lauté and Carol Forse, were once again successful in their bid to be volunteers and
Contributed by Gina Bird. For Soroptimists countrywide, marking International Women’s Day on a bridge represents reaching out to women across the world. In keeping with this well established tradition, the Winchester Soroptimists headed firstly for the recently re-furbished Hockley Viaduct. To complete our day, Louise Bainbridge, architect to the trustees of the historic St Cross buildings and one of our own members, gave us an excellent talk on the background of the buildings and their maintenance.
Update on 21st February 2014: 136 dresses are now ready to be sent to our sister club SI Banjul in The Gambia. This club has a number of projects with young women and girls in the rural areas of this extremely poor part of West Africa where they will distribute the dresses on our behalf. We are grateful to the girls from Test Valley School, St Swithun’s School, The Henry Beaufort School, local Girl Guides and Rangers and to members of SI Guildford and District for their creativity and enthusiasm in helping us to exceed our original target of 100 dresses. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Fourteen attractive pillowcase dresses launch our new project to bring dignity and pleasure to little girls in The Gambia. We have joined a worldwide project with the simple premise that “every little girl deserves at least one pretty dress”. It was started in
The weather did its worst but it was a fine night inside Littleton Hall. Great fun, great food and great company and, to top it all, we raised in excess of £1700 for The Margaret Lovell Memorial Fund in aid of Birthing in the Gambia. Together with other fund-raising efforts, notably the 2014 Corset Calendar, this looks likely to take us over the ambitious £10,000 target Margaret set us. Carol has produced a Smilebox to celebrate the event. We would like to thank the following for kindly donating raffle prizes: The Running Horse, Littleton The Coach and Horses, Sutton Scotney Salisbury Racecourse ‘The Plaice’, Harestock Sparsholt Stud, Watley Farm, Sparsholt Southampton Solent University The Executors of the Estate of Margaret Lovell and the generosity of members of the Club.
At the Regional Meeting in November club member Sonia O’Hehir was asked to give her impressions of her first Federation Conference (Gateshead 2013). While we cannot reproduce Sonia’s enthusiastic delivery we can pass on her message. “I have called this short piece Four Eyes Illuminating Informative Inspiring Impressive ILLUMINATING The light went on in regards to where the Branch sits within the Region, the Federation and International and the light also added clarity to the hierarchy – President, Immediate past president, vice president etc. etc. The fact that I am a member of a world wide organisation of 80,000 + women was also highlighted. Our presence at the United Nations where we have category 1 Consultative status with the Economic & Social Council an accolade that does not come easy also brought home to me how powerful we can be. Friendliness – Smiley lit-up faces
Members from SI Winchester, SI St Albans and SI Preston were privileged to attend a lecture by Beatriz Chadour Sampson at the V & A on Saturday. Beatriz gave us a comprehensive overview of the exhibition using high-definition images of many of the spectacular pieces. We particularly enjoyed the fascinating insights into the immense amount of work required to curate such a world-class exhibition. The V & A provided a delicious lunch in the seminar room and the clubs had a chance to socialise; this would not have been possible in the tumult of the V & A cafe! In the afternoon we visited the exhibition at our leisure. Of course it stands on its own merits but we all thought we gained so much more because of our great good fortune in having it introduced to us by its curator, our valued
Our Region, SI Southern England, has a Friendship Link with the National Association of South Africa and a team of twelve from the region are currently on a Study Tour to visit their Club Projects. Their itinerary is as follows: 14 November fly overnight from Heathrow to Cape Town 15-18 November – Cape Town, mixture of tourism and visits to Cape of Good Hope Club Projects 19 November leave Cape Town for a morning flight to Port Elizabeth 19-21 November visit Club Projects for Port Elizabeth and Grahamstown Clubs 21 November fly from Port Elizabeth to Durban on an evening flight 22 November visit Club Projects for Durban Club 23 November fly from Durban to Johannesburg on a morning flight. Skype Link-up with Regional Meeting. 24-28 November visit Club Projects for Johannesburg, Pretoria and Tshwane Pretoria Clubs, including a visit to SOS Mamelodi 28 November leave
So far Margaret Lovell’s Memorial Fund has raised £5,700 towards our target of £10,000 for the BIG Project. Some of this money has been used to provide a much needed ultrasound scanner. It has been installed in Brikama Hospital and will undoubtedly save lives. A brass plaque engraved with the words: “Presented in memory of Margaret Lovell by her friends in Soroptimist International of Winchester and District and Southern England” has been attached to the machine. Margaret was a great supporter of The Big Project and the Region is pleased that her name will live on as part of a project that is saving the lives of mothers and new-born babies in The Gambia.
For many years SI Winchester has enthusiastically supported the Wonders of Waste, an ecological livelihood project for two small groups of women in the Philippines. The project was set up and is run by Helen Mitchell so we were delighted that Helen’s recent visit to the UK coincided with our Regional Conference at Denbies Vineyard. Helen attended as our guest speaker. She showed us a video which traced the history of the project back to the cataclysmic eruption of Mount Pinatubo in 1991. This dumped millions of tons of ash and debris over a wide area, making farms unusable and over 100,000 people homeless. The immediate challenge was to resettle people and to provide the basics of shelter, water and sanitation. The ongoing challenge was to provide livelihoods for the displaced people. This is where Helen and the WoW project comes in. It provides a
In gratitude for the money the club raised for the Early Childhood Development Centre in Kisumu, the staff and parents invited us to rename the school and we chose The Smiling School. The logo features SIGBI’s “dynamic S” and, because we thought this might be hard to reproduce locally, we have had a signboard made. This has now made its way to the school and Christine Achola, President of SI Kisumu, has told us that the school appreciates our gift and has sent us photos of its arrival and “hanging”. We are amused to see that the new classrooms have been decorated in Soroptimist colours so the name board looks very much at home. Click here to find out more about this project. To pause a slide, just “mouse” hover over it. [new_royalslider id=”11″]
Club member Beatriz Chadour Sampson’s Pearls exhibition opened at the Victoria and Albert Museum (V & A) on 21st September and runs until 19th January 2014. This truly stunning exhibition, organised in partnership with the Qatar Museums Authority (QMA), has been co-curated by Beatriz, a renowned jewellery historian, and Hubert Bari, Director of a future Pearl and Jewellery Museum at QMA. The jewellery and works of art in the exhibition are drawn from the V&A and QMA’s collections, alongside objects from British collections including Tate Britain, the British Museum and the Royal Collections and established jewellery houses such as Mikimoto, Tiffany & Co., Bulgari, Cartier, Chaumet, Rene Lalique and YOKO London. Reviews of the exhibition have appeared in many publications around the world. Here are just a few: Article from The Guardian, 16th September 2013. Gallery – Impressive photos from The Guardian‘s website. Article from Art Daily Article from The Economist
Barbara and Kay threw open their delightful garden and offered a warm welcome and a delicious lunch to fellow members and their families. The event was a huge success and must be repeated next year for those unable to attend this year – notwithstanding what the cat thinks! Photos and Smilebox by Carol Forse
Recalling the glory days of Tupperware, we are organising a series of coffee mornings around our district to sell our delightful WoW bags. Three members co-host the event and invite only non-Soroptimists so, not only can we spread the word about these amazing ‘Fruits of the Philippines”, but we also have the opportunity to promote the pleasure and benefits of being a Soroptimist. Carol, Sonia and Ann organised the first event in central Winchester and raised £310 on the day, increased by £103 in sales to guests who came back for more! One lost her new purchase to her daughter immediately she saw it. The next event will be in Alresford on 22nd August starting at 10:30am. Contact us for more information. To find out more about the Wonders of Waste bags, click here. WoW Bags Catalogue 2013
We are deeply saddened by the death of Margaret Lovell on 28th May 2013. We have lost a very special friend who really valued her fellow Soroptimists as the sisters she never had. Quiet but stubborn, deep thinking and highly principled, Margaret was a true and committed Soroptimist of many years standing. The club mourns the loss of a loved and esteemed member. SI Winchester is grateful for the condolences and the many tributes to Margaret we have received from fellow Soroptimists. This one from Judith Naish (SI Epsom and District) sums up the general sentiment: Margaret had a great sense of humour and a wonderful flair for organising events. When I was President for two years in the early 1990s Margaret was an invaluable help, guide and mentor and one knew that you could ask her absolutely anything and she would give a wise