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Women Serving the Global Community

Soroptimist International is a vibrant, dynamic organisation. We are the world's leading international women's organisation focussed on building a better world.  We are the largest women's service organisation and, through our Consultative Status at the United Nations, we strive for equality, peace and international understanding. We have clubs from Argentina to Zimbabwe.

In Cockermouth we have been involved in exciting and thought provoking projects for 39 years. These projects have been aimed at improving the lives of women and girls, locally, nationally and internationally.See the 'About Us' tab for information about SI Cockermouth & District.

We are also on Facebook which is much more current at Cockermouth Soroptimists Facebook Page

....and we have a twitter account at Cockermouth Soroptimists Twitter Feed

SI Cockermouth & District News and Current Projects


      We are hosting a free Mental Wellness event at United Reform Church 10am-3pm to coincide with World Mental Health Day. Come along and join in the activities.


        We had an exciting Rock Party event at Braithwaite featuring All Saints Rock Squad in concert, supported by 'Rockin' Relics' :)

        • Soroptimist Regional Conference 10th June 2017

          We had a really inspirational line-up for our annual conference, hosted by our Regional President, Jane Inman of our Cockermouth Club. The photo shows Jane with two of the inspiring speakers.


            Members took part in the Walk and it was a bit wet as you can see below:

            • SPEAKER FROM 'BLOOD BIKES' - FEB 2017

              The speaker at the first meeting of the month was Anne-Marie Wilmott from Blood Bikes. She gave a very interesting talk about the organization and the very valuable work they do, not only transporting blood, but also medical items that are urgently required. As well as emergencies, there are regular runs every night as they service the Air Ambulance. Taxis used to be used, but they were not always consistent and of course were expensive. This service is purely voluntary and relies on donations from the public. After the talk and several questions from the floor, Joan Hetherington presented Anne-Marie with a cheque as you can see below:

              • GLOBAL BLANKET - SEPT 2016

                Just had a very busy club night .....knitting baby hats supporting the SI Thames Valley Kori project, celebrating a member's birthday with cake, catching up after a long summer break, starting our club global blanket, welcoming a potential new member.....oh and we got through all the necessary business too. Busy women, making things happen!

                #makefashiontraffikfree The pics below show members starting off our global blanket - a project to raise awareness of the trafficking and enslavery of young girls in the fashion industry. Ask .... #whomademyclothes ?

                • TABLE TOP SALE AND PLANT STALL - JUNE 2016

                  The Meru Garden Project in Africa is the Federation’s International Project and members held a Plant Stall to raise funds for this. The picture below shows us in action:


                    We have supported the following project which received much radio and press coverage;

                    • COCKERMOUTH FLOODS 2015

                      Thank you to everyone for your support. The recovery campaign is underway and many shops are now open in tell your friends ‘Cockermouth is open for business’ We are directing all offers of donations to the CCF who provide immediate financial support where it is most needed - see Cumbria Community Fund - Flood Appeal 2015

                      • ASCOT RACE NIGHT SEPT 2015

                        Such a fun, amazing evening ....and approx. £1000 raised....see Cockermouth Soroptimists Facebook Page

                        • President's Trip to the Intenational Conference in Istanbul 7-21 July 2015

                          International President Ann Garvie opened the conference, inviting us to recharge our batteries and ‘Go home as Chariots of Fire’ And urged us to work in partnership with the White Ribbon Campaign, engaging men and boys to speak out against violence against women in all its forms (domestic abuse, forced marriage, honour killings, trafficking, elder abuse, FGM.

                          1450 delegates from over 140 countries, 4 Federations and more than a thousand different clubs represented by members, including 3 from Northern Region, Jane Inman (SI Cockermouth Club President and Regional Vice President) Margaret Clarke (Regional President) and Shirley Hallam (President SI Tynemouth and Whitley Bay club)

                          The convention session was opened by each of the 4 Federation Presidents lighting a candle reminding us that we are a global voice to speak out for women. Stimulating speakers included author Elif Shafak who presented a reflective introduction on how books had changed her. We also heard white ribbon campaign founder Michael Kauffman, who talked about the need to redefine the role of men as caregivers and the importance of creating innovative approaches to engage men and boys in gender equality issues. He discussed some of the reasons he sees for the epidemic of men’s violence in our world.

                          It was a thought provoking conference, here's a picture of Jane, our president and a conference shot. There is more on Facebook.

                          • Club trip to Watchtree Wheelers

                            Our trip to Watchtree Wheelers was great fun. They work by enabling everyone to get biking. get people on bikes! The simply pleasure of riding a bike is often taken for granted. Watchtree Wheelers aim to make it possible for all people to ride - no matter what obstacles might stand in the way.

                            They have a fleet of adapted bikes, a glorious nature reserve for riders to explore and a wealth of knowledge in experienced instructors. They specialise in riding for disabled and disadvantaged people, although they also offer training for toddlers, juniors and adults from learning to ride to British Cycling level sports coaching.

                            We are planning a great Autumn fundraiser to support them - an Ascot Race Night :) Here we are enjoying our trip.

                            • Working with Guides and Brownies - Raising Dementia Awareness

                              We had a great day on our 'Forget me Not' Dementia Awareness stall at the Georgian Fair in Cockermouth. We also raised money by selling blue plants. Thanks to our rainbows and brownies for decorating the blue pots and earning minutes towards their Soroptimist badges :) See Dementia Friends for more information Here are some pictures of our planting session:

                              • C2C - Soroptimist Regional Clubs make a splash of orange

                                Fantastic girls! 3 of our members walked our section of the SI North Region Coast to Coast to raise awareness of the United Nations international campaign to STOP violence against women. An orange splash from Coast to Coast. Women inspiring action, transforming lives. Our ladies are shown here raring to go:

                                • Working with Guides and Brownies for 500 miles

                                  A special evening session was held on the 28th of January with Rainbows, Brownies and Guides to promote the Big Dinner, taking place on March 8th in aid of the 500 miles. The charity was set up by Olivia Giles who is truly inspirational. She lost both legs and her hands following meningitis and now works to provide locally made prosthetics for handicapped people in Africa.

                                  Coins had been collected and were set out to spell ‘500 miles’ Games were played, there was a sing-song and marshmallows were toasted. The event was filmed by a crew on behalf of the charity and will feature on the Big Dinner DVD. You can find some wonderful pictures at our Cockermouth Soroptimists Facebook Page This pic shows some of the coins we collected:

                                  • Prison Reform Trust Report

                                    [Excerpt from Soroptimist UK Programme Action Committee web-site] Soroptimists have called for a UK-wide drive to reform women’s justice. Too many women in the UK are still being sent to prison instead of receiving community sanctions and targeted support to address the causes of their offending, says a leading women’s voluntary organisation.

                                    The women’s prison population doubled between 1995 and 2010. Most women in prison serve short prison sentences for non-violent offences and many have themselves been victims of domestic violence and abuse. In 2011 the Soroptimist UK Programme Action Committee resolved to work with the Prison Reform Trust to reduce women’s imprisonment.

                                    Now a wealth of information gathered by 139 Soroptimists clubs across the UK has been distilled into a report that is intended to spur national and local governments into action. The report recommends the development in England and Wales of a cross-government strategy for women’s justice, led by the Minister for Female Offenders. Recommendations for improvements to the oversight of women’s justice in Scotland and Northern Ireland are also highlighted. The report can be accessed at Prison Reform Trust Report

                                    As usual there were some very good keynote speakers, one of the best was Jenni Murray from Woman’s Hour on BBC Radio 4. She talked about her life on radio and the women's issues they have raised. She also recounted several tales of interviewing such great ladies as Hillary Clinton.

                                    At Cockermouth’s instigation, there was a stall staffed by members of the Philippines Community Fund and club members were able to hand over many ring pulls plus the 520 pencil cases packed last month, for their school. The stall itself raised £1,500.

                                    • Working with Guides and Brownies to encourage young people to volunteer.

                                      We have developed a badge while working in partnership. The very first Soroptimist Volunteering Guide Badge was presented to a Cockermouth Brownie by Wendy, our founder president and herself a former Guide Captain. The girls have to complete 300 minutes of volunteering with us on our projects. Mel, Guide leader says 'So many of the Soroptimist ideals work alongside the Girlguiding ideals'. Hopefully the first of many. Well done!

                                    • Please hover over the 'Home' tab above for more details of our work to develop the badge with Derwent Girlguides.

                                    • Please see the 'Calendar' tab above for more details of other forthcoming programme events.

                                    • 'Collections': We are still currently collecting:

                                      • fizzy drink can ring-pulls for a project to support women in British prisons with educational projects for the Purple Community Fund and
                                      • new toiletries and (sealed) make-up for a number of projects to support women in difficulty in the UK
                                      • We also routinely support The North Lakes Foodbank Please contact them to donate to this very worthy local cause.

                                        Please contact us for more information by emailing us at

                                        We are also on Facebook at Cockermouth Soroptimists Facebook Page

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