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Calgary Soroptimist club to provide career guidance and mentorship to girls during one-day conference, in partnership with Closer to Home Community Services

Date: Saturday, November 7, 2015
Contact: Katherine Reiffenstein, 403-830-6640,

Are you a high school girl interested in going to college or university? Do you want guidance on how to set and achieve your career goals? Would you like access to professional role models and mentors? Get the resources you need to plan your future through the Soroptimist Dream It, Be It: Career Support for Girls program, which aims to help girls grow to be strong, successful and happy adults.

Dream It Be It Career Support for Girls Calgary

Soroptimist International of Calgary and Closer to Home Community Services will co-host a day-long conference for girls aged 14 to 18, where they will learn about career opportunities, setting and achieving goals, and overcoming obstacles to success. The Dream It, Be It event will take place on Saturday, November 7 at Rosscarrock Community Hall, from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Breakfast, lunch and snacks will be provided.

Girls and their parents/guardians can learn more and sign up for the program by visiting An information session on the program for girls and their parents/guardians will be held at Closer to Home at 7 p.m. on October 28, at 3507A, 17 Ave SW.

Throughout the day on November 7, the girls will attend sessions based on the following topics:
• Discovering your dreams
• Exploring careers
• Creating achievable goals
• Rising above obstacles
• Turning failure into success
• Balancing your stress
• Putting dreams into action

“Because we don’t expect that all girls will know what they want to do for the rest of their lives and we also know that plans change, the skills developed through the day can be applied to any goals the girls identify throughout their education and careers,” said Katherine Reiffenstein, President of Soroptimist International of Calgary. “The girls will also have the opportunity to speak with working women and to receive more support in the future from our facilitators.”

In addition to learning important life skills, the girls will also leave with a variety of other resources and fun items, including a bag of gift items and a certificate for participating, at the end of the day.

Dream It, Be It joins with the long-running Live Your Dream: Education and Training Awards for Women to create the “Soroptimist Dream Programs,” which provide sustainable, measurable change for women and girls, and ensure they have access to the education and training needed to reach their full potential and live their dreams. The Live Your Dream Awards assist women by giving them the resources they need to improve their education, skills and job prospects.

Soroptimist International of Calgary is part of Soroptimist International of the Americas, a cause-related philanthropic federation of clubs improving the lives of women and girls through social and economic empowerment. The Calgary Soroptimists join 1,300 Soroptimist clubs in 20 countries and territories that empower women and girls through volunteer projects, such as cash grants for education. For more information on how Soroptimist improves the lives of women and girls, visit .

Closer to Home Community Services is a local charitable organization that offers a wide range of services designed to meet the unique needs of children, youth and families. Closer to Home’s mission is Empowering Families to Stay Together, and it envisions a future where every child will belong to a family and feel valued and secure. Through the use of evidence-based practices and innovative solutions, Closer to Home strives to preserve, reunify and build stronger families who can care for their children and contribute meaningfully in their community. For more information on how Closer to Home serves our community, see

Soroptimist and Closer to Home thank Shoppers Drug MartEastport and Brown Bagging for Calgary’s Kids for supporting this event.

Local philanthropic group honours women in Calgary

April 8, 2015
Press Release

Calgary, AB The Calgary chapter of an international volunteer service organization, Soroptimist International, announced awards to local women last night at a banquet at the Delta Bow Valley.

Members of Soroptimist International of Calgary and their guests heard from keynote speaker, Anna Murray. Ms. Murray is the winner of the Making a Difference for Women Award (formerly the Ruby Award). This award recognizes a woman who, through her professional or personal efforts, is making an extraordinary difference in the lives of women or girls.

Anna Murray’s career in corporate social responsibility has included positions in China, the United States, Switzerland, the Dominican Republic, Tanzania, Peru, and Canada. In 2007, she went to New York and Switzerland to serve as a consultant to the United Nations ‘Global Compact’. A case study she wrote for the United Nations in 2007 has been promoted around the world as a best-practice example on business and human rights.

Her expertise includes stakeholder engagement, community relations, human rights and security, risk management and governance activities. She has worked at Talisman as senior advisor in the Corporate Affairs Group since 2011. Ms. Murray is the recipient of the Canada’s Most Powerful Women: Top 100 Award (WXN), Top 40 under 40 (Avenue Magazine), Top 20 under 40 (Oil and Gas Investor), Rising Star Class of 2014 (Oil Week) and was named by the Canadian Business Magazine as “set to transform the face of business in Canada.”

Ms. Murray recently founded Young Woman in Energy, (YWE) an organization for young women under 40 to address the need to increase female leadership in the energy industry. This organization has grown to include over 1,000 women working to champion the interest of young women in the energy industry.

Soroptimists also issued its Live Your Dream: Education and Training Awards for Women, monetary awards granted to women who are the sole financial support for their family and are enrolled in post-­‐ secondary education. Three women received Live Your Dream awards, one in the amount of $3,000 and two in the amount of $1,500, to help them further their educations. Unlike most scholarships and bursaries, the grants are not tied to specific expenses such as tuition – the women can use their discretion to spend the money where needed, whether books, tuition, child care or household expenses.

“Soroptimists strongly believe that education is the key to ensuring women’s financial independence, self-esteem, health and equality,” said Katherine Reiffenstein, president of SI Calgary. “The Live Your Dream Awards is Soroptimist’s signature program because the awards lead directly to women’s social and economic empowerment, our overarching goals. When single mothers receive the training they need to start their careers, they not only gain the ability to support their families, they become role models for their children, and leaders in the community.”

SI Calgary also announced the winner of its Violet Richardson Award, granted to a high school student who makes the world a better place through volunteer service. This year’s winner, Angela En Chi Chen, received $250 plus a $500 donation for her chosen charity, People for Progress Foundation.

In addition to issuing its awards, SI Calgary works to improve the lives of girls and women by funding local and international agencies that share its objectives. In the last few months, SI Calgary donated over $94,000 to agencies, including the YWCA, the Women’s Centre of Calgary, and the Calgary Immigrant Women’s Association.

SI Calgary was established in Calgary in 1934 and is part of an international network of similar clubs, comprised of almost 80,000 women in over 120 countries and territories.

Contact: Soroptimist International of Calgary
Katherine Reiffenstein, President