A brilliant reason for celebrating
On 21 June 1921, a group of women met at the Hotel Oakland in San Francisco (USA). They formed a Members Committee in order to launch the world’s very first Soroptimist International Club.
Did they realise back then how enormous the network of Soroptimist clubs would become? Probably not that day, but by 1926, Mrs Fox-Pitt, founder member of the first Soroptimist International Club in the UK was able to say: “I do not think I am being over optimistic when I predict that in a few years’ time there will be a Soroptimist Club in every town and city of importance in Europe and America.
Now, of course, there are many Soroptimist International Clubs on every continent.
So throughout 2021 we, Soroptimist International Great Britain & Ireland – Sigbi, our Federation – together with Soroptimists around the world, will be celebrating 100 years of Soroptimist action.
How are we celebrating our Bright Past and Brilliant future?
Celebrating Women from our Bright Past
We will be celebrating Soroptimists past and present. The 100 4 100 Campaign has identified over 100 successful women who deserve special mention. So, nationally, we will celebrate 12 Soroptimists a month for the twelve months of 2021.
We’re also celebrating some of the Soroptimists in our Club who left their mark on their community and beyond. Read about them here
A Memorial Statue linking our Bright Past and Brillian Future
Our National Federation, Sigbi, commissioned a statue to commemorate 100 years of Soroptimism. It is now installed in the National Memorial Arboretum
When you next visit, don’t forget to take a look!
Planting Trees for our Brilliant Future
Trees that are nurtured and loved last a long time – just like our Soroptimist International organisation.
Putting trees on the map
Trees will be planted this year throughout the Soroptimist International universe. Over 60,000 will be planted in the UK and Northern Ireland. See where they are here.
Where will SI Woking plant trees?
We plan to mark the Soroptimist centenary by planting a tree in Woking. We already have one – a joint effort by SI Woking and Woking Lions – in Jubilee Square.
We have also contributed £100 towards the Trees for the Downs project. The 100 trees the Southern Region plans to sponsor will hopefully be disease resistant “New Horizon” Elms. They will replace some of the historic trees lost to Dutch Elm Disease. Thiswill fill an important gap in the ecosystem of the Downs, by providing food to butterflies and other insects.
Special Celebratory Events and Exhibition
Soroptimists will get together at the House of Lords for a celebratory reception in the summer. There will also be special events in the Welsh and Scottish Parliaments.