Friday, April 18, 2014

Service and Advocacy

Student photos by Christopher Conzen, SCCC
Peconic Bay was delighted to support two recent events for women.

March 28, “At the Nanoscale,” Center for Functional Nanomaterials
Members organized a program at Brookhaven National Laboratory for young women in science, technology, engineering and math from Suffolk County Community College. The students did hands-on nano demonstrations, toured Brookhaven's nanocenter, and participated in a lively panel discussion about women in science and technical careers. Thanks to Brookhaven Women in Science for their help.

April 8, Equal Pay Day, Suffolk County

The Long Island, Peconic Bay and Suffolk clubs represented Zonta International at this event, organized by the New York Chapter of Enterprising and Professional Women and the Suffolk County Office of Women’s Services. Zonta (see ZI logo on the program below) was recognized with a certificate of appreciation, accepted by Evelyn Lamoureux of the Long Island club. Brookhaven Women in Science’s Christina Swinson, spoke on the panel of women in non-traditional jobs. Swinson is an accelerator physicist at Brookhaven Lab.

Coming Up
Yard and bake sale to raise money for Peconic Bay Zonta scholarships, 5 Emerson Court, Hampton Bays, May 24, 8 a.m. – 2 p.m. Multi-family clothes, jewelry, household items, books, home-baked goods and more. Rain date: May 25.

Sunday, February 23, 2014

Black History Month

The African American Affinity Group at Brookhaven National Laboratory sponsored a month of activities to celebrate Black History Month.

Peconic Bay Zonta made arrangements to loan the group "Pray the Devil Back to Hell," a documentary that tells the remarkable story of a group of Liberian women who banded together to end a bloody civil war and bring peace to their country. Two of the women in the film -- Ellen Johnson Sirleaf and Leymah Gbowee -- shared the Nobel Peace Price in 2011.

Peconic Bay Zonta was acknowledged on the poster advertising the film's screening.

Saturday, January 18, 2014

Peconic Bay Zonta Awards Scholarship to ESL Student Maria Narvaez

Maria Paula Sierra Narvaez (right) accepted a $300 scholarship from Mary Ann Miller of Peconic Bay Zonta. Narvaez, who works as an au pair in Montauk, has successfully completed Level 3 of an English as Second Language program at Suffolk County Community College Eastern Campus, in Riverhead.

In her scholarship application, Narvaez wrote that she studied physical therapy in her native country of Colombia and wants to improve her English so that she can earn a degree to "help more people around the world." She is particularly interested in learning about neurological disorders in children so that she can help them.

Based in Riverhead, Peconic Bay Zonta covers eastern Long Island and is affiliated with Zonta International, which works to improve the status of women worldwide through service and advocacy.

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Zonta Says NO

The United Nations has declared November 25 to be the International Day for the Elimination of Violence Against Women. On that day, Zontians will wear orange to draw attention to violence against women and girls.

The headlines are all too common, even in Peconic Bay's backyard:
   Woman fatally shot in Ridge: boyfriend charged with murder

As reported by Long Island's daily paper, Newsday, the murder took place on November 17, outside the couple's apartment in Ridge. According to Newsday, the woman was shot twice as she was fleeing, once in the head and once in the back.

On the international front, Zonta is supporting three projects:

     Global Partnership on Edutainment for Social Change
     Safe Cities for Women in Honduras
     Empowering Rural Women in Samoa to Combat Violence

Join Zonta's campaign to end violence against women. Be aware of this issue and speak out against it.

Sunday, November 3, 2013

Happy Turkey!

Once again, Peconic Bay Zonta provided a delicious meal for Maureen's Haven, an organization serving homeless on eastern Long Island. Our feast for 30 went to Sacred Heart Church in Cutchogue.

The menu:

  • turkey, and lots of it!
  • cranberry sauce
  • stuffing
  • potatoes
  • yams
  • green beans
  • gravy
  • bread, rolls and butter
  • pumpkin pies -- seven!

Liala Strotman organized our menu and meal preparations.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Touring India

This lovely table was set by host Kay Jones for an Indian-themed dinner on October 8. Our choice of country for Peconic Bay's dinner meeting that evening was inspired by Diane Greenberg's recent trip there. We enjoyed looking at Diane's photos and hearing about her travels.

Barbara Pierce added India – for the second time, the first being in 2012 – to her growing list of countries for which she collects stats on birth rate, infant mortality, fertility rate and literacy from The World Factbook, published by the U.S. Central Intelligence Agency. These numbers tell us a lot about the status of women and girls around the world. India in 2013 showed an apparent improvement over 2012.

Birth rate (births/1,000 population)
  • India - 20.24
  • U.S. - 13.68
  • China - 13.71
  • Mexico - 20.04
  • Egypt - 23.79
  • Germany - 8.3
  • Liberia - 37.25
Infant mortality (deaths per 1,000 live births)
  • India - 44.6
  • U.S. - 5.98
  • China - 21.16
  • Mexico - 19.01
  • Egypt - 23.3
  • Germany - 3.54
  • Liberia - 74.52
Fertility rate (children born/woman)
  • India - 2.55
  • U.S. - 2.06
  • China - 1.77
  • Mexico - 2.37
  • Egypt - 2.9
  • Germany - 1.41
  • Liberia - 5.13
Literacy, male | female (% 15 years and older who can read and write)
  • India - 75.2 | 50.8
  • U.S. - 99 | 99
  • China - 95.1 | 86.5
  • Mexico - 92.4 | 89.6
  • Egypt - 80.3 | 63.5
  • Germany - 99 | 99
  • Liberia - 73.3 | 41.6
Although they are not shown here, we also have stats on Chile, Democratic Republic of Congo, France, Haiti, Ireland Israel, Italy, Japan, Kenya, Republic of Congo, Spain, Sudan and United Kingdom.

Just think of the international cuisines we have sampled and the countries we have explored. And this year, that experience happened in first person, with Diane traveling to India and Liala Strotman to Ireland.

Sunday, September 29, 2013

District 3 Conference

Mona Rowe represented Peconic Bay Zonta at the District 3 Conference in Annapolis, Maryland, spending a full Saturday out of the three-day meeting from September 27-29, 2013. Saturday's program included presentations and discussions on violence against women, the conference theme.

Zonta Club of Annapolis hosted the event, and Mona brought a raffle basket from Peconic Bay to help Annapolis defray conference expenses. Peconic Bay’s basket was stuffed with greens (mostly edible): Abbada date, aloe vera, fern, kalanchoe, lavender, oregano and sage.

Below is the president’s report (given at the conference) for the past Zonta year, June 2012 through May 2013:

The Zonta year 2012 was super for Peconic Bay. As the year began, we gained a new member, Liala Strotman. As the year ended, we met a prospective member, Kathi Hendrickson, who joined in 2013. Nice to the have the year book-ended by these great additions to our team! Liala will have her hands full – literally – organizing a turkey dinner for a local homeless shelter in November, one of Peconic Bay’s long-standing service projects.

The year was full of other highlights, of course.

Peconic Bay awarded its first English as a Second Language scholarship to Veronica Rivas.

We had been working for two years to raise dollars to support this effort and to develop a sound process for choosing a female student at the local community college. In her scholarship application, Ms. Rivas explained that she enrolled in the ESL program “because I want to have better opportunities … a better job, travel to new places, and have friends who speak English.”

Here’s some background: Peconic Bay’s region encompasses eastern Long Island, which boasts spectacular ocean beaches and picturesque country roads dotted with farm stands. The area is a playground for the rich and famous.

But the East End has another side:
- Lack of affordable housing and public transportation
- Deep poverty amidst great wealth
- Feelings of isolation from those who live there doing the service jobs that support the wealthy

When Peconic Bay’s Mary Ann Miller met Ms. Rivas to give her the check, the woman reported that she had just been promoted at one of her three jobs, going from bussing tables to waitressing. Improving her English is directly linked to the young woman's success in this country, and Peconic Bay was pleased to give her a boost, both financially and emotionally.