This is a busy but exciting time for Soroptimist clubs across Western Canada. All clubs in our region have participated in the Women’s Opportunity Award and soon the final judging will be complete. The Women’s Opportunity Awards program assists women who provide the primary source of financial support for their families by giving them the resources they need to improve their education, skills and employment prospects.
Right now, across Western Canada there are at least 19 women whose lives are about to change. The Women’s Opportunity Awards program involves three levels of cash awards. The program begins at the local Soroptimist club-level, where award amounts vary. Local-level award recipients become eligible for region-level awards of either $3,000 or $5,000. Region-level award recipients then become eligible to receive one of three international-level awards of $10,000.
The Women’s Opportunity Awards is more than merely “another awards program.” The program truly underscores the Soroptimist mission of improving the lives of women and girls. Unlike other awards there are no restrictions on how to use the award. It might be for tuition, books, childcare or transportation. Or, it might to pay for the children’s soccer fees or for new shoes.
Talk about life changing!. To measure our impact, Soroptimist International of the Americas sends surveys to recipients three years after they receive the award. In 2010-2011, survey results showed:
97% reported an increase in self-esteem and self-confidence
69% reported earning an educational degree/certification
54% reported securing higher-paying employment
80% reported an improved standard of living for themselves and their dependents
88% reported serving as a role model for their dependents
How can you help? I would like to invite you to take part in our Live Your Dream campaign. Live Your Dream is a community that connects people online to do volunteer work offline that helps women and girls to live their dreams. When you join the Live Your Dream community, you join a group of like-minded individuals who dream of making the world a better place for women and girls. JOIN the community now and let’s make those dreams a reality.