FEDERATION PROJECT FOR 2016 – 2019 – THE MERU WOMEN’S GARDEN PROJECT
About Meru Women’s Garden Project
Meru District is in Tigania East with a population of 136,000. 90% live in rural areas with HIV/AIDs prevalent in the region. Meru Women’s Garden Project will support some of the poorest women-led households in Kenya, and is entirely focussed on providing opportunities to women and girls who may never otherwise be given the chance to earn an income, and gives them status within their community. It fully embraces the three key areas at the heart of SIGBI’s Programme Focus Goals – Educate, Empower and Enable. Improved food production and education will support women and girls to transform their lives and those of others through a process of cascade learning and mentoring thereby reducing poverty, improving health and increasing employment.
The following data gives a clear indication of the need for this project:
41% of women and girls are grossly or borderline malnourished
43% live below the poverty line of £1 per day, with more in rural areas
55% live a hand to mouth existence in agriculture using methods which degrade the land
93% use local trees for firewood, impacting hugely on deforestation
22% have no formal education
11% complete secondary education
8% achieve minimum levels for literacy compared to 85% in Nairobi
9% achieve minimum levels for numeracy compared to 87% in Nairobi
woman working in garden1The Project aims to:
Educate women to increase their knowledge and skills so that they can use the most efficient, organic methods for food production to:
reduce extreme hunger by becoming self-sufficient with sustainable gardens at home
improve girls’ attendance and achievement in secondary school by creating breakfast clubs and sustainable food gardens, so that they are not hungry and are better able to learn
Empower women through education to find a voice within their community to:
raise their standard of living above the poverty line
gain the respect of elders and others, achieve equal representation and take on more prominent roles
create productive and decent employment by engaging women and girls with leadership skills to take on training and mentoring roles
Enable women leading a household to create their own employment through growing and selling their crops, or as tutors and mentors to:
significantly reduce extreme poverty by enabling and promoting income generating activities
promote opportunities to cascade training, form farming cooperatives and establish mentoring
increase local women’s share of paid employment
HOW will the money raised by SIGBI Clubs be spent?
The project will be structured to expand over a three year period and numbers can be scaled up. With funding from SIGBI, even more women can be trained enabling more households to become self-sufficient and begin to move out of poverty.
Each group of women will receive a one year package of equipment, training and mentoring. The training will be cascaded year on year via the groups.
The South West and Channel Islands region come together at the regional meeting to mark the elimination of violence against women by wearing orange.
Regional clubs get together to show case the Meru Women’s Garden Project at the Taunton Flower Show.
Representatives from some of the South West Region clubs took their turn staffing the tent at the Taunton flower show highlighting the Federation’s Meru Women’s Garden project and also regional projects and work that is done in the area.
We also held a quiz guessing which local photo belonged to which club. It wasn’t easy!
Skirting Science with S.I Weston-super-Mare
President Gillian attended a skirting science day at Churchill School, Churchill Green where leading companies held workshops encouraging girls of age 13/14 to consider science orientated careers in the future. This is always a well attended event and Gillian was able to watch students create their own robots and then challenge each other at the end.
Supporting S.I Cirencester at their vintage Tea event.
S.I Bath and District members enjoyed a rather enjoyable vintage tea provided by S.I Cirencester on Sunday 25th June. The weather was very kind to us and it helped raise money for the Abbey 900 project and also raise the profile of Soroptimist International.
Well done ladies!
The 2017 Regional AGM and Conference held at Tiverton.
WE all had an enjoyable time at the AGM and conference held over the weekend 16th – 18th June. The Tiverton club put on a great show adn fun and friendship was had by all those that attended. The speakers were very informative and our own Soroptimist speakers paved the way for the future.
there was no helming back on the fun that was had on the Saturday night with the dancing!
Regional Development Workshop Held at Taunton
A good day was had by all at out regional development workshop. It’s always good to get together and exchange ideas and views.
HOW DID OUR CLUB RAISE MONEY FOR THE PROJECT?
We held a quiz night and we also held a summer tea party. Over £200 was raised.
Regional Project: Presenting twiddlemuffs to a carer at Cepen Lodge Care Home, Chippenham.
We have been making ‘twiddlemuffs’ for Care Homes which helps residents with dementia
These are our current and recent projects – for more information click on the charity names for a link to their websites.
The Bath Soroptimist Bra – made for Cancer Support to RUH.
Raising awareness about domestic abuse
We have produced a poster called Love Me, Love Me Not to help raise this awareness, with contact details for those who are affected by these issues. We have written to major stores and supermarkets in Bath, each with a copy of the poster, asking if they were prepared to display the posters on their premises, for example staff rooms and cloakrooms and have offered further copies at no cost. We have also sent posters to all secondary schools and colleges within the Bath area hoping that they will be displayed in places where they can be read without any fear of recrimination. And lastly, we have had a letter published in the Bath Chronicle to cover a wider audience.
Fish and Chip Babies
We are currently knitting jumpers for babies in Africa. When they are born the mothers are unable to afford clothing so they wrap their babies in newspaper hence the name ‘fish and chip’ babies.