Message from the Governor!

Imagine if....


 
Governor's Message October 10, 2017
 
And the disasters just keep coming....
 
There have been hurricanes, earthquakes, and within our own region, a mass shooting and wild fires.  As I write this, I wonder if Soroptimists are being evacuated from their homes due to the wild fire threat.  As SI Greater Sacramento reported in their recent newsletter, "We Wrote Checks!!! But Disasters Keep Coming".  I don't see an end in sight at the moment on the need before us. Puerto Rico and other hurricane hit areas are not yet out of danger and now we have wild fires.  Soroptimists, please continue to be generous, continue to help a Soroptimist with her efforts to pick up the pieces and move forward.  
 
In addition to our own SI Bidwell Rancho, there are many organizations responding with aid. 
 
SI Greater Sacramento member Yolanda did some research on organizations helping Mexico and suggests the following:
• The Mexican Red Cross. Their website is in Spanish but you don’t need to know much Spanish to figure out how to donate.www.cruzrojadonaciones.org
 
I am hopeful that we can make a difference in the lives of women and girls wherever the need arises.
 

Governor Vicki


Governor's Message September 26, 2017

Soroptimists,
 
I was asked a question just this past Saturday from a member attending the District 3 Fall Meeting.  Her question was, "How do we make our clubs more diverse?"  What a wonderful question to have and unfortunately, I didn't have a good answer for her. But hey, it's a hard question.   I think we all know that we need diversity as part of being a healthy strong club, but how do we achieve it? Studies show that humans tend to gravitate toward "like kind" and are more comfortable, in general, with those that have common traits.  So I've come up with a few items that might help us step out of our comfort zone and seek out others.  Click here for my thoughts on how clubs start the diversity effort.  
 
After reading, I ask you for your thoughts, how do we achieve diversity in our clubs?  I'd love to hear from you.
 
Thank you,
 
Vicki Watson
SNR Governor 2016-2018

 


Governor's Message September 12, 2017

Soroptimists,

It's hard to believe that the last E-Blast, just two weeks ago, was about providing support to the victims of Hurricane Harvey. As I write this, Florida is being slammed by Irma. Soroptimist International of the America's has released some helpful information for those that want to contribute to the relief efforts. Click here for more information. My heart goes out to those in the path of these historical storms. Their lives have just been changed and they will have a huge challenge to bring normalcy back into their lives.

Here in the Sierra Nevada Region, we are getting ready for our Fall District Meetings. I encourage all members to attend. This is for new members and seasoned members. I promise you will learn something new as a Soroptimist and take information back to your club or your committee. Here is the schedule of meetings.  You are welcome to attend any meeting if you are unable to attend your own meeting.

As Houston and Florida begin to rebuild their lives, we begin our club year of improving the lives of women and girls.

Thank you all for your efforts as a Soroptimist!

Governor Vicki

SNR Governor 2016-2018


Governor's Message September 4, 2017 - Special

 
As we have another hurricane brewing in the Atlantic, I have had many inquiries as to an organized effort to assist our fellow Soroptimists in the Hurricane Harvey affected areas.  I have checked with Soroptimsit International of the Americas and confirmed that the disaster recovery efforts that many of you referred to is no longer provided by SIA.  
 
So plan B:  
 
Soroptimist International (SI) of Bidwell Rancho, Chico, is working directly with SI Austin and SI Alvin, Texas, to support their clubs’ Harvey disaster needs.  At this point, SI Alvin is staffing shelters, and soliciting locally for necessities, as well as medical personnel. Monetary donations would be made at sibidwellrancho.org; checks, made payable to SI Alvin and/or SI Austin, may be mailed to “Harvey”, C/O Soroptimists Bidwell Rancho, PO Box 9170, Chico, CA  95927.  As with any donation, include the notation that this is earmarked as “Harvey Relief”.
 
I have also reached out to the governor of that region and offered our sincere well wishes and asked how we can be of assistance.
 
Thank you for your concern and generosity as these Texans start to put their lives back together.  And a special thank you to SI Bidwell Rancho for pulling this together quickly.
 
Vicki Watson
SNR Governor 2016-2018

 

Governor's Message August 15, 2017
 
SNR Soroptimists, 
 
As I sat down to write my article this week, I decided to check my email first.  What I found in my email inbox was the weekly Eblast from SI American River.  I'm on their email distribution list and I enjoy reading about what they are up to.  This week, President Lisa Bloom wrote an article that struck a cord with me.  She put to words what I have been feeling and tied it together beautifully with Soroptimist.  So, with her permission, I repost it here as its worth reading.  Enjoy....
 
From President Lisa of SI American River:
 
"After struggling a bit, trying to identify the topic of my message to you all this week,  I had finally come up with some focus. Sometimes I just can't find the right theme...one that's current, topical and somehow tied to the Soroptimist mission and vision. Was patting myself on the back thinking I would be a day early, which would make our editor a happy camper for sure. Yeah!
 
Then...Charlottesville.
 
So, scrap that message and begin again.
 
As a Soroptimist, I look at our organization and like to think that we are mission focused, driven by the need to be the best we can be, to do what's right,  to be there for women and girls, locally and globally, helping them to be the best they can be, to be inclusive. As an organization, I'm sure we've had our ups and downs, but on balance I think our hearts are in the right place, both historically and now. Reading the history of Soroptimist and looking at photographs taken at or near our inception,  we were not always a diverse group. But we've grown up and out from then, and expanded our membership into Asia and the Pacific Rim, to Europe, to South America, Africa and the South Pacific. Women from all walks of life, of all political persuasions, of all sexual orientations and of many races and nationalities are bound together under the umbrella of Soroptimist, joined by a common goal.
 
I remembered hearing a speech from or reading an article about our most recent Soroptimist International Immediate Past President Yvonne Simpson. I couldn't recall the exact nuances, but remembered that it touched on some things that are relevant to my thoughts today...niggling at the back of my brain, but definitely not clear...so out to the cyberworld to refresh my memory. Gotta love Google...
 
IPP Yvonne, who is a native of New Zealand,  had been telling a story about the feathered Maori cape she wears. At the time, I remember seeing her and thinking "what is this cape thing and what does it have to do with Soroptimist?" And then I heard the story.  The cape is beautiful, comprised of tens of thousands of feathers, having taken 3 years and 30,000 hours to complete...a gift to Soroptimist from Waitari women after a police shooting to symbolize love and hope and to show their town as a more positive place. Soroptimist was the recipient of the gift in 2004 as it was known that through Soroptimist  it would be a symbol that would be seen throughout New Zealand. And, as it turns out, as Yvonne became International President, around the world as well. The cape is called Te Amo Oranganui Ki Te Au (Bearer of Wellbeing to the World) and the message is one of inclusivness and healing.
 
So, to me, symbolism on multiple levels...one, our of tragedy, something of beauty was created to promote healing and two, the beauty created was made up of thousands of uniquely different feathers, each beautiful in their own right, forged together to serve a common purpose. 
 
So take heart that out of the horrific and tragic events of the past weekend hopefully something positive will be the result. And that we, as unique and beautiful individuals, can work together despite our differences, to achieve that positive result.
 
In closing, I'm sharing some final thoughts from IPP Yvonne...5 key points to make ourselves better Soroptimists: be kind to ourselves, be grateful, validate others, give and receive, and celebrate."
 
I want to thank Lisa for her insightful words.  I have met IPP Yvonne several times and was happy to see her message shine through in Lisa's article.  I think we have work to do in our individual clubs regarding diversity.  I remember Past Governor Janice challenging us all to have our club demographics match our town/city/rural area demographics.  How has your club done on that challenge, I wonder.
 
Have a great two weeks ladies, our clubs should be readying for our September "back to Soroptimist" after a quiet summer. See you soon at the Fall District Meetings.
 
Sincerely, Governor Vicki
 

Governor's Message August 1, 2017
 
Soroptimist members,
 
Imagine If...every girl owned at least one dress.  
 
As some of you already know, I asked the members to find an international project that meets our Soroptimist mission to consider it for a region-wide project during this biennium.  Dress a Girl Around the World was presented at our Spring Conference as a option.  After a presentation from District Director Sarah Walker, I asked for a show of hands of members who were interested in participating. From the stage, it was an overwhelming YES!  So, I am now asking you to participate in this region-wide effort to improve the lives of girls in Africa.  There are several ways to participate.
 
  • Sew Dresses for Hope 4 Women International: The SNR Board decided to partner with a non-profit organization Hope 4 Women International and supply dresses for their "Dress A Girl Around the World" project.  We make the dresses, deliver them to Hope 4 Women International and they make sure they are given to the girls in need in Africa.  
 
  • If you would prefer to do this on your own, you can Sew Dresses and have members traveling to Africa transport them to the girls in need.

  • If you are a club of non-sewers, then perhaps you could provide fabric or patches to another club that does have women who sew.

  • A club could provide financial support to the sewing clubs.
 
Your District Director will keep track of your efforts so we know how we are doing. If you are already participating, we would like to include your efforts from July 1, 2017 thru to mid April. We will provide updates as we go through the year.
 
Your region board members have volunteered to collect dresses and get them to the Hope 4 Women to do their part.
 
I hope this is a project that your club will find fulfilling and will participate. I would like to identify those clubs already participating and get some helpful hints.  I'm hoping for 100% participation and am asking for your support.
 
I've attached several document to help you get started:
 
Happy Sewing.......
 
Governor Vicki
 

Governor's Message July 4, 2017

I hope that you are spending time today with friends and family as we celebrate the birth of our great nation.  I reflect on our mission and our efforts to improve the lives of women and girls today.  Most of the women we serve have lost a freedom at some point in their lives, especially those who have been trafficked.  I just wanted to take a moment to thank you all for what you do as a Soroptimist.

In an effort to increase readership of the SNR Eblast, we will be making some changes.  This publication will be bi-weekly starting with this edition.  We heard from many of you that you get too many emails and that every 2 weeks may work better for you.  Also, we hope to shorten the articles by providing links to documents for further reading for those that are interested.  We will keep club events and newsletters toward the bottom, so don't hesitate to scroll for new information.  Articles will also have a "removal" date in order to make room for new material. I welcome your feedback as we try something new.

Thanks for reading....

Governor Vicki

SNR Governor 2016-2018


Governor's Message June 13, 2017

Sierra Nevada Region Soroptimist members,

Hope you are all doing well as you welcome your new board and celebrate the successes of the past year.

Items I want to share with you this week:

Our Fundraising Federation/Region Chair Kim Sayers from SI Bidwell Rancho asked me to share some information regarding Founders' Pennies.  Click here.  Our region has had a long standing requirement of mandatory member participation; however, we no longer require it.  I hope you do continue to support Soroptimist International of the Americas (SIA) through Founders' Pennies.

Some of you have requested the Powerpoint presentation (George Bailey story) that our SIA visitor at Conference Kathy King gave at Conference.  It has (or will be soon) added to our SNR website.

Soroptimist Development Retreat is coming up very soon.  Please registration NOW for both the Retreat and your hotel room.  I guarantee it will be worth your time.  It's for ALL members, not just your club officers.  See link to registration post below.

Lastly, in an effort to make this E-Blast method of communication more efficient and read by more members, starting July 2017, we will publish every 2 weeks versus the once a week as we do now.  The feedback from members is that is too often.  I know what my email inbox looks like, so I do understand.  I welcome your feedback as we try something new this next year.

Sincerely and in Soroptimist service,

Governor Vicki 


Message from the Governor May 26, 2017

Soroptimists,

Please find the 4th Board Meeting Call to SDR and the tentative Board Meeting Agenda.

Hope to see you all soon,

Governor Vicki

SNR Governor 2016-2018

 

Board Meeting Call to SDR

Tentative Board Meeting Agenda

 


Message from the Governor May 25, 2017

Soroptimists,

Please join me and the Sierra Nevada Region board for Soroptimist Development Retreat on July 8 - 9, 2017.

So, what is Soroptimist Development Retreat, you might ask?

Well, we call it SDR for short and it is a weekend of general and breakout sessions on all things Soroptimist. We have about 18 breakout sessions for our members to choose from, in addition to our 3 general sessions at meal times. This is something for EVERYONE. Years ago...many years ago, this was a training session for incoming officers. It has grown to be that and so much more.

For your registration fee of $100, you get three meals and the choice to choose from 18 sessions. I will be providing more information each week as the sessions are developing. So stay tuned and check your E-Blasts each week.

Information you NEED!

SDR REGISTRATION

Click here for Registration to SDR.

If you want in on the chance to win a 1-night stay and spa passes for 2 at the Atlantis, register by June 8th. Yes, this is us trying to get you to register EARLY.

Register late, June 24th and beyond, and you will incur a $35 late fee. Yes, this is us trying to get you to register EARLY.

HOTEL Registration

You will need a hotel room if you are a local, so you can do that here. The Atlantis needs you to register for you room by June 17th.

We have a great weekend planned, so please send your club members. I guarantee it will be worth it.

Hope to see you at SDR 2017.

Governor Vicki

 

SNR Conference Winners


Message from the Governor May 2, 2017

Soroptimists,

I just want to take a moment of your time to thank all of you who attended, presented and/or worked at our 41st Annual Conference this past weekend.  My goal was to sprinkle fun throughout the weekend and bring you some experiences from past SIA Conventions.  We tried a few new things with some working and some not so much.  Your feedback is key to improvements for next year.  Thank you to those of you who left your evaluation comments as you were leaving on Sunday.  For those of you who didn't get a chance to complete it before you left, you still have time.  All attendees will get an email from the online registration with a link to the evaluation form.  If you completed the form at Conference, you can disregard the email.  Our hope is that attendees found Conference inspiring, fun, educational and a great way to spend the weekend.

With Conference behind us now, we are looking ahead to our next event.  Mark your calendars for Soroptimist Development Retreat July 8 -9, 2017 at the Atlantis Casino Spa Resort.  We are planning for it NOW!  We hope to have about 16 breakout sessions along with 2 general sessions.  This is not just for your club officer training, there's something for ALL Soroptimists.

See you in July!

Sincerely,  Governor Vicki 


Message from the Governor April 25, 2017

Sierra Nevada Region Soroptimists,

I recently received a report on the Club Giving efforts of the Sierra Nevada Region.  About 48% of our clubs are contributing to SIA through Club Giving.  I want to take a few minutes of your time to make sure the clubs are aware of how your Club Giving money is spent and the deadlines for recognition.

Our Club Giving directly effects our efforts in making a difference for women and girls throughout our federation.  Our donations fund the Soroptimist Dream Programs.  The club and member donations fund only 68% of the total funds of the Live Your Dream and the Dream It, Be It.  The balance comes from investment income.  Did you know that the SNR winners of the Live Your Dream that are awarded on Sunday of Conference are funded from members and investment income?  SNR is not writing those checks, they come from SIA.  I did not realize this until I was SNR Treasurer.

SIA asks clubs to budget 10% of fundraising dollars to go to Club Giving.  It's a target and if we didn't have one, would we remember to budget for it?  We have received more in money back to the region than we have contributed in many years.  We are a healthy region and I think many of our clubs can contribute.

As clubs are working on their budgets for next club year, please remember that your club giving will come back to us in awards for our region Live Your Dream winners.

In clarification, a club must submit their annual remittance by May 31st to be recognized as contributing this year.  If you submit after this date, your club contribution will be applied to the following year.

Thank you all for all your efforts on behalf of women and girls.

Vicki Watson

SNR Governor 2016-2018


Message from the Governor April 11, 2017

LAST CALL for CONFERENCE 2017

Soroptimists,

We will be submitting our meals counts to the Atlantis this week, so you only have a few days left to register "late" for Conference.  We still have room for you, the more the merrier.  So, if you are planning to come and haven't registered yet, do it NOW.

I also wanted to provide you with the link to the Lip Sync Battle sign up form.  We have several "acts" that are already signing up.  Space is limited due to time, so if you want to play along and have some fun, please sign up soon.  Our emcee for the Battle is available to answer your questions and to help you if you need it.  You can reach her at Sskrjc66@gmail.com.

Deadline for entries is April 20th.

Here's a link to the Lip Sync form to inspire you.

See you many of you soon in Reno!

Sincerely,

Governor Vicki

SNR Governor 2016-2018

 


Message from the Governor April 4, 2017

Soroptimists,

Member recruitment is not something that is just a committee's job.  Its an all club effort at all times.  We are recruiting, in some respect, each time we act on the behalf of our organization.  So why do women join?  There are many unique reasons. Soroptimist International of the Americas has reported back to us in the past noting surveys asking women why they join Soroptimist.   The  "easy" answer was to have fun while working toward a common goal with like minded women.  When others see us having fun, they want to be a part of it. 

So although our annual conference isn't necessarily a recruitment event, we still want to have fun.   On Friday night of our 2017 Conference, we are putting on a Lip Sync Contest as Governor Elect Lane mentioned last week. I'm mentioning it again this week due to the limited space we have for "acts".  You will thoroughly enjoy watching our fellow Soroptimists having a blast as they "perform" their song or as you are on the stage.  The beauty of Lip Syncing is that you don't have to have any singing talent what-so-ever and no one will ever know.  You just have to be willing to have fun.

So, here's your chance to have some of that fun you signed up for.  Master of Ceremonies Stacey Sawyer is ready to hear from you, in fact, I think her club has already signed up.

One housekeeping item this week....there was a typo in the Call to Conference regarding the Nominations.  These women are not running for District Director positions, at least not yet ;)  They are running for the position of Nominating Committee Member for their district.  I know that the vast majority of you knew this already and probably didn't even notice the typo.  The correction has been made to the Call to Conference on the SNR Website.

Thank you all and have a wonderful fun-filled week.

Sincerely,

Governor Vicki

SNR Governor 2016-2018 

Message from the Governor March 28, 2017

"Leadership is not a position or a title, it is action and example",  author unknown

One of my goals this biennium is to aid in the development of leaders in our organization. One leadership style is to "lead by example".

I quote Carl Golden, "Good leaders must lead by example. By walking your talk, you become a person others want to follow. When leaders say one thing, but do another, they erode trust--a critical element of productive leadership".  He goes on to list 10 things you can do to lead by example.  I have listed a few.

1. Take responsibility. Blame costs you your credibility  

2. Be truthful. Inaccurate representation affects everyone.  

3. Listen. Ask questions. Seek to understand.  

For the full list, you can find it here.  (http://soulcraft.co/essays/lead_by_example.html)   TRACEY, make the "find it here" the link.

A few weeks ago, I shared the Soroptimist International of the Americas (SIA) board decision to phase out our use of the SI emblem (the lady logo).  I did get a few questions which were primarily focused on our membership pins that we so proudly wear which are the SI emblem. It seems, for the most part, members understand the need for the change to brand ourselves with the S logo that was introduced years ago.

So with "leading by example" in mind, I have begun the subtle change to remove the SI emblem from our region documents and promotional materials.  You may or may not have noticed this already.  We have until 2019 to phase her out of our materials, but I have decided to take the lead and begin the phase out now.  She is, however, a part of our history and we can continue to wear the pin along side our S jewelry.  I have provided more information from SIA to assist the clubs with this transition.

Let me know if you have any questions,

Sincerely,

Governor Vicki