Projects in South Africa
We support two projects in South Africa that are led by our Friendship Link Soroptimist Clubs.
Volunteering in Pretoria/Tshwane (VIP)
After the positive feedback about our two interns in Pretoria/Tshwane, the Southern England SI clubs decided to fund them for one more year. We saw for ourselves how well they are doing when we talked to them live during our recent Regional meeting. It’s enormously satisfying to hear that from the young women themselves how we have helped them gain skills and confidence.
We were also thrilled to see the Soroptimists we cooperate with for the first time. We agree with our South African sisters, distance does make us stronger, together and individually.
Andile and Koketso, our two interns, started work at their Primary School in January 2020. They are doing very well despite the pandemic. They are able to help children with lessons while they’re at home. At the end of their voluntary internship, their prospects of a good career should be much brighter.
The South Africa Soroptimists who are mentoring the two girls say: “We have reached our half-way point with the VIP Project. We are excited at the progress made by our two young women. They say the experience has been fulfilling and relevant, in spite of having to deal with the Covid-19 pandemic.”
Soroptimist clubs in Southern England launched a joint project to offer a 6-months internship/volunteering placement to 18-25 year-olds. Our Friendship Links in South Africa are leading this project and select applicants from their local areas.
This year, SI Southern England (SISE) is sponsoring two young women from a Pretoria township to work in a school (whose principal is a Soroptimist), giving them work and life experiences which they otherwise would not have had.
The project is a great opportunity for the young persons to acquire new skills that will be useful in a future career in a different environment.
We are pleased to be one of the Clubs in Soroptimist International Southern Region offering financial support to this project.
“We have changed lives for the better.” Sue and Barbara, the two Woking Soroptimists who are monitoring the project on behalf of SI Southern England, are delighted with the results so far.
More information is available on the Regional website: www.sigbi.org/southern-england.
Our Friendship Link Club in South Africa, SI Pretoria-Tshwane has launched a new project. Members will support two women’s wards at the Weskoppies psychiatric hospital. The aim is to give practical help – offering small gifts and clothes and making visits as necessary or practical – and also to campaign to end the stigmatisation of mental illness.
SI Woking intends to support this effort.