More than a thousand Members of a world-wide women’s organisation, Soroptimist International of Great Britain and Ireland (SIGBI) including members from Harrogate and District attended the ‘Pink by the Pool’ event on Friday November 11th and made a splash of pink for breast cancer awareness.
The SIGBI 82nd Annual Conference “Engineering the Future” took place between the 10th and 12th November at the Malta Hilton in St Julians.
The Conference theme chosen by The President of SIGBI, Margaret Emsley, herself a Civil Engineer, makes reference to the difference that Soroptimists make to the lives of women and girls throughout the world.
All Soroptimists worldwide strive to “engineer” the future for women and girls, encouraging them in non-traditional STEM subjects (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics). In addition, Soroptimists strive to Educate, Enable and Empower women and girls worldwide.
Realising the need for ongoing specialist training in science and medicine, Soroptimists joined President Margaret by the Pool at the Malta Hilton, wearing pink which created a considerable splash of colour!
The aim was to emphasise the need for more research and for more funding to ensure that no one, anywhere in the world, is denied diagnosis and treatment. Although over the years, there has been immense improvement and mortality rates have dropped significantly, especially in Malta, there is still the need for more education and training both in diagnosis, treatment and awareness raising, not just among women but also amongst men. Researchers around the world are working to find better ways to prevent, detect, and treat breast cancer, and to improve the quality of life of patients and survivors. Nearly €1500 was raised in an impromptu collection for Breast Cancer Research in Malta.
The three day conference had an action packed programme with some inspirational and stimulating keynote speakers, including Dr Helen Sharman the first British astronaut; Dame Professor Sue Ion, the British engineer and expert on nuclear power and Dave Coplin, Chief Envisioning Officer at Microsoft and Founder of The Envisioners.