As a local organization, we know that the programs we support must make a difference in our local community, and we are committed to seeing that happen via the following programs:
Domestic Violence Prevention
October is Domestic Violence Awareness month. But awareness and resources for help are needed every day of every month.
In 1994, Soroptimist International of the Americas launched the Soroptimist Workplace Campaign to End Domestic Violence: Keeping Women Safe at Work. Learn more about this program on the SIA website.
Here in Skagit County, the Skagit Domestic Violence and Sexual Assault Services (DV&SAS) is the recognized provider of domestic violence and sexual assault services. Their services are confidential and free and available to all members of our community. Domestic Violence Hotline operates 24/7 at 1-888-336-9591 or 1-800-562-6025. Visit their website for more information.
The town of La Conner provides financial support for Skagit DV&SAS, along with many other county, state and federal supporters.
SILC has a program that collects toiletries for women and children who often arrive at the shelter without some basic necessities. Shampoo, soap, washcloths, combs, lotion, toothbrushes and toothpaste are included in these personal needs bags. Soroptimists collect and donate to support this program.
Violence by one person against another is not acceptable, anywhere, any time.
Each person has the right to expect physical, emotional and sexual safety.
Preventing Human Trafficking
What is Human Trafficking?
Human trafficking is the second largest and fastest growing criminal industry in the world. Victims experience a loss of freedom and exploitation at the hands of their traffickers who buy and sell them in pursuit of profit. As a result, human trafficking is commonly known as modern-day slavery. In human trafficking situations, traffickers gain complete control over victims and force them into the labor, services, or commercial sex industry in order to generate profit from their labor and commercial sex acts. Some of the forms of violence traffickers use to control their victims include brutal beatings, rape, lies and deception, threats of serious harm or familial harm and psychological abuse.
In 2007, Soroptimist International of the Americas launched a major campaign, Soroptimists STOP Trafficking, aimed at raising awareness about the devastating practice of human trafficking. Visit the Soroptimists STOP Trafficking page online for more information.
To learn more about efforts to fight human trafficking in northwest Washington State, visit Skagit County Coalition Against Trafficking.
Secret Santa Program
Our Holiday program, established in 1998, and renamed the Secret Santa Program in 2006, is one of our most rewarding community programs. This program recognizes the amazing efforts of single moms and single head of household, and aims to congratulate and honor them for the hard work they do to make a better life possible for their families. Since its’ inception we have given close to $28,000.00 to over 100 people in the form of food vouchers, checks, and gift certificates to our Vintage La Conner Thrift Shop. These awards are given out in early December to make it possible for these families to enjoy the holiday season. Referrals are obtained from several organizations in the community, including La Conner Schools, Swinomish Tribe, and La Conner Food Sunrise Bank. Being able to present these gifts in person is an amazingly rewarding experience every year. The heartwarming responses (and hugs) that we receive make this program one of our favorites.
“My heart is so thankful to you … you made me evaluate myself and say “I am doing great! Secret Santa Recipient
SHOUT (Soroptimist Helping Out) Program
As community members and Skagit Valley residents, we know that there are times when an extra hand is needed … whether it’s to help out a neighbor, volunteer at a community event, or even assist in an emergency. In the past several years we’ve participated in activities including providing sandwiches for flood workers, working on Habitat for Humanity projects, setting up and dismantling museum exhibits and putting together toiletry bags for Friendship House.
“Dress a Girl around the World” (2010 program) brought together the Leadership Club from the La Conner High school, as well as local sewing enthusiasts and the Bilikins, to make pillowcase dresses for children in underprivileged countries. We sent 100 dresses for distribution by Hope for Women.
Other programs have included Community Baby showers, Bake Sales, Tea and Fashion shows, fundraisers for local cancer patients, Dress for Success, support for La Conner July 4th celebrations, and donations to local community projects involving children sports programs and the Sea Scout program.
Being able to support our local community outside of our club goals is an additional opportunity that we wholeheartedly embrace. This program varies each year and we are always looking for new ways to contribute!
Feel free to contact us with your ideas!