The organization’s major project is the Soroptimist Women’s Opportunity Awards, which disburses more than $1 million each year to head-of-household women who wish to make a better life for themselves and their families by improving their education, skills and employment prospects. Soroptimist also sponsors the Live Your Dream campaign in recognition of the power of women and their dreams.
The Soroptimist Ruby Award: For Women Helping Women (formerly the Soroptimist Making a Difference for Women Award) acknowledges women whose extraordinary personal or professional work improves the lives of women and girls – work such as spearheading an effort to open a domestic violence shelter, starting a mentoring program for at-risk girls, or lobbying companies to provide on-site child care. The Ruby Award program enables local Soroptimist clubs and the Soroptimist organization to thank these women and encourage others to explore ways to assist women and girls.
The program begins on the club level, where the type of recognition varies. Award winners at the club level are eligible for additional awards at other levels of the organization. The finalist receives a $5,000 donation to the charity of her choice.
Although Soroptimist clubs are free to honor a woman for a lifetime of good work, the majority of the work should have occurred within the past two years. Previous award winners, Soroptimists and Soroptimist employees are not eligible for the award.
Former recipients include domestic violence expert and advocate Elaine Weiss; former U.S. Congresswomen Patsy Mink and Patricia Schroeder; novelist and former district attorney Linda Fairstein; Princess Diana; former child actor and U.S. Ambassador Shirley Temple Black; former Philippines President Corazon Aquino; and marine biologist Dr. Sylvia Earle.
Those interested in applying for this award should call Chairperson Judi Parent-Smith at 925-348-5508 or e-mail email@example.com.
A 501(c)(3) organization, Soroptimist relies on charitable donations to support its programs. For more information, visit www.soroptimist.org.
– Contributed by Lori Anzini