This is an especially busy time for clubs, working on raising funds and planning how those funds should be spent. So, before all the decisions have been made, let's talk about Club Giving.
For the last two years, Desert Coast Region (DCR) has been one of four regions Federation-wide with 100% club participation in Club Giving. We've made this commitment to support Club Giving because we're dedicated to our Mission and can see clearly that the investment we make with these gifts provides a better return than any other programs or projects.
- SIA recently interviewed Live Your Dream Award (LYD) recipients who were honored three years ago, and found that:
95% have increased self esteem
- 82% of women who completed their education have an increased standard of living
- 96% reported serving as a role model for their dependents
Similar successes have been documented with Dream It, Be It, where girls who participated reported:
- 90% feel more confident about their future
- 87% feel more prepared to pursue their career goals
- 80% said DIBI provided them with tools to overcome obstacles to their success
Members usually say that their favorite day of the year is the day we give out our Live Your Dream Awards. We know that our Live Your Dream Awards change lives because we've heard the stories and seen the results firsthand. Recipients report that, while the cash is very helpful, more often it is the emotional boost they receive when Soroptimists say "we hear you, we see your struggle and with stand with you". This support allows honorees to imagine a new and better tomorrow, and translates into success for themselves, their families, and their communities, breaking cycles of poverty and violence, and sowing seeds of hope for us all.
There is more good news though, because when we invest in Club Giving, 100% of the money we give comes back to us from SIA. So rather than thinking of Club Giving as decreasing the amounts we can spend in our communities, let's think that we're increasing the amount of money we have to spend locally when our donations come back to us from SIA in the form of club grants, region recognition for LYDA honorees, other program support, professional marketing materials to raise awareness of our Dream programs, and the like.
What better use can we make with our hard-earned service funds than to make an investment in our own life changing projects? I long for a future when each woman who meets the award criteria is honored with a generous LYD Award at the Club, District, or Region level, when the number of women we honor doubles, triples and quadruples year over year, each and every year. We accomplish this by ensuring that we donate at least 10% of our locally raised funds to Club Giving. As we grow our participation in our life changing programs, we'll become known as the organization that changes lives of women and girls by providing support that lifts them out of poverty, and puts them on a road to social and economic empowerment.
It all starts with Club Giving!