October is Membership Month! Meet some of our wonderful members and read about their Soroptimist stories here.
Dorjsumiya Yondonperenlei - SI Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia
Dorjsumiya joined SI Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia in 2006, and was motivated to become a Soroptimist to add another more satisfying element to her life through community work, learning from others, and to also make new friends and extend her network. Her goals in joining were “to gain some experience in community work and learn new skills from others”.
When asked, why Dorjsumiya is a member of SISWP she said that "It refers to my pride. As a woman and a mother of three, I am proud of being a member of SISWP. An organisation that takes global actions for girls and women. I have made many friends, learned new skills, and change my perspective and receive positive feelings and inspiration from our actions".
Maree Gentle - SI Gore, New Zealand
Maree has been a Soroptimist for 10 years now and says that she learned about SISWP through a friend. She had also been looking for a service club that aligned with her values. Maree said " I have always felt it was important that all people regardless of sex, colour or creed be treated with respect and have equal opportunity in a world that doesn't yet provide that. I also wanted to be part of throwing more "starfish back into the sea".
"We are a worthwhile organisation. We make a difference one step at a time. I have stayed a member because I value the company of women who care to make a difference locally, nationally, and internationally. I value the friendships made and the opportunities to meet people I wouldn't normally come in contact with".
Vivien Kamen – SI Karratha & Districts, Western Australia
Vivien has been a Soroptimist for 14 years and was invited to a Club Information evening by another Soroptimist. She was suitably impressed and realised that “this is what I had been looking for”. After joining Vivien’s goals were to gain knowledge from being a Soroptimist. “The ability to make a change to someone’s life, have understanding and empathy. I hoped that people will 'reach out' to me”. What she enjoys the most about being a Soroptimist is “the friendship and loyalty bestowed to everyone. I believe strongly in the ideals and philosophy and the thought that the world could be a better place”.
Maureen Pugh - SI Westland, New Zealand
Maureen has been a Soroptimist for 16 years and joined SISWP for the ‘Sisterhood’! Sisterhood. “I wanted to get to know the people in our community that were always so ready to help with community events, but who also supported women and girls”.
Asked about the goals Maureen set when joining and … she said that she wanted to be able to add her support to local projects and international programmes because of the difference they made. “Empowering women and girls is my goal, and it is done by living the example and always being alert to opportunities”. During her time with SI Westland, Maureen has been inspired by seeing a fellow member become Soroptimist International President and in there near future dedicate further time to SISWP projects.
Judith Bennett - SI New Plymouth, New Zealand
Judith has been a Soroptimist for 23 years and initially heard about SI New Plymouth through work colleagues. She joined SISWP to become a part of an organisation that cared for and helped women who may be disadvantaged by the society or culture they lived in, locally and internationally.
What Judith enjoys most about being a Soroptimist is the sharing the company of women with likeminded aims to work for the advancement of women and girls. “I gain a great deal of satisfaction from participating in the projects our Club undertakes and the fact that Soroptimists make a difference in society”.
Meredith Wise - SI Brighton & Southern Districts, Victoria, Australia
Meredith has been a Soroptimist for 24 years and she joined after searching for non-paid volunteering work that aligned with her values of self-development and community service.
What Meredith enjoys most about being a member is the “friendship, sharing similar values, involvement in all aspects of Club life, including training, office bearing (Secretary after only 6 months—a great way to learn, then President, Treasurer, Newsletter editor etc.) plus fundraising and supporting local & international projects”.
Nisha Dobberstein - SI Damansara, Malaysia
Nisha has been a Soroptimist for 2 years and wanted to join an organisation that works towards “uplifting the living standards of marginalized women and children”. Helping women from lower sociodemographic groups become independently financial through entrepreneurial programs.
Nisha mostly enjoys the “spirit of working together as a team with like-minded women”.
Lydia Holmes - SI Brighton & Southern Districts, Victoria, Australia
Lydia has been a Soroptimist for 10 years and joined “to help make the lives of women and children around the world better”, through education and food and shelter security programmes.
Lydia mostly enjoys the friendships she has made by being a Soroptimist. Partnering with local charities and working with and learning from inspiring role models.
Julie Cooper - SI Brighton & Southern Districts, Victoria, Australia
Julie has been a Soroptimist for 22 years. She joined to help contribute towards local community-based projects. Julie enjoys being “able to assist those in the community who are struggling, and organisations trying to support the community in various ways”. To collectively work towards programmes which contribute funding towards assisting women and children affected by natural disasters such as drought, floods and bushfires.