Tuesday, May 12, 2015

South Africa: Up Close and Personal

Peconic Bay's Membership Chair Liala Strotman recently returned from a trip to South Africa. Liala shared her experiences, impressions and photos at our May meeting and also told us about visiting a local school and donating supplies. Because she's a retired educator, the school visit and all her interactions with children were especially memorable. Liala took the photo (above) of a wall near Nelson Mandela's home. In bright red letters, it says:

   STOP Women & Children Abuse

Advocacy Chair Barbara Pierce added South Africa to her long list of countries we've "adopted" for an evening of discussion and cuisine during our business meetings. See a short list below.

                                    Birth Rate                    Infant Mortality                            Fertility Rate                 Literacy
                                    (births/1,000)         (deaths per 1,000 live births)     (children born/woman)    (% 15 and over read, write)
                                                                 Total          Male         Female                                        Total           Male        Female

Chile                              14.64            7.71          8.49          6.88                1.92               95.7        95.8          95.6
China                             13.71           21.16       19.43        23.08                1.77               90.9        95.1          86.5
Egypt (2013 est)            23.79           23.3          24.83       21.7                   2.9                72           80.3          63.5
Germany                          8.3              3.54           3.84        3.21                 1.41               99           99             99
India                              22.22           30.15        34.61       25.17                 2.72               61           73.4          47.8
Mexico                          20.04           19.01         20.91       17.02                  2.37              91           92.4          89.6
Rep of Congo               40.09           74.22         79.58        68.7                   5.59               83.8        89.6          78.4
South Africa                  18.94           41.61         45.25        37.9                   2.23               93.7        95             92.6
Ukraine                           9.41             8.1            10.13        5.94                  1.3                 99.7        99.8          99.7
U.S.                              13.68             5.98           6.64         5.3                    2.06               99            99             99

Saturday, April 11, 2015

Zonta Spring Workshop

Close to 60 Zontians gathered for the District 3, Area 1 & 2 spring workshop, held on April 11, 2015. It was a glorious spring day -- and especially lovely because the meeting location was at water's edge at the base of the Throgs Neck Bridge.

Two sessions triggered lively topical discussions:
   - Empowering Our Clubs with Knowledge: A Turnkey Public Relations & Communications Plan
   - Empowering Our Clubs with Confidence: A Turnkey Strategic Plan for Membership

All in all, the workshop was a good way to share ideas, get inspiration and network with dynamic women and men who support Zonta International's mission for empowering women through service and advocacy.

With Peconic Bay always looking for new ways to raise dollars for our ESL scholarship, Mona Rowe collected some great ideas. For example, the Zonta Club of the Bronx does a "Zumba for Zonta" event. According to club president Marsha Gilles, participants pay a fee to participate in a Zumba exercise class with a professional instructor, a health and wellness workshop, and a Chinese auction. Last year, the group raised money for domestic violence and other causes. This year's event in the Bronx is May 2, 2015.

Monday, March 16, 2015

Mayan Craft Sale Draws Eager Shoppers

Peconic Bay's recent service project raised over $1,300 for Mayan Hands. From scarves to bags to toys, every item for sale was hand made by Mayan women in the Guatemalan Highlands.

Background: Deb Lohman, a retired educator and weaver, was a guest at our January 2015 meeting. She told us about her recent visit to a Guatemalan women's cooperative, supported by Mayan Hands. This fair-trade organization promotes the work of Mayan women who create traditional textiles, basketry and other items for sale. The money is used to support the women's families, educate their daughters and purchase school supplies.

After discussion, we decided to seek/develop opportunities to sell hand-made crafts to benefit these Mayan artisans.

Our next sale is on March 26, 2015, during a reception in conjunction with LUNAFEST, a film night at Brookhaven National Laboratory sponsored by Brookhaven Women in Science and by the Stony Brook Women’s Leadership Network at Stony Brook University. The films are by women, for women and about women. NOTE: LUNAFEST HAS BEEN CANCELLED, NO SALE!

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Craft Sale to Benefit Mayan Artisans

        DATE:    Thursday, March 12, 2015
        TIME:     4 - 7 p.m.
        PLACE:  Mesquite Tex Mex Grill
                       2034 N. Country Road
                       Wading River, NY

Mayan women continue the ancient tradition of weaving, handed down from their foremothers over three thousand years ago. Your purchases will allow these women to earn an income so they can feed their families, send their children to school, and realize dreams for a better future.

For sale: baskets, scarves, table linens and more. Shop for unique gifts or treat yourself. Cash or checks accepted.

Enjoy complimentary coffee and light snacks. You may also dine in or order dinner to go.

This event is a service project of Peconic Bay Zonta, a local chapter of Zonta International. For information about the sale, contact Liala Strotman, lstrotman@yahoo.com.

Friday, February 13, 2015

In the News

Thanks to Diane Greenberg, Peconic Bay Zonta got a good plug in a local newspaper, the Community Journal.

See the article on Inci Tubluk winning Peconic Bay’s ESL scholarship. You can read about the winner in the post on January 12, 2015.

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Guest Speaker from France

Nathalie Bouet was our guest speaker at our January 13 meeting. A scientist at Brookhaven National Laboratory, Nathalie is a French citizen and led our discussion on the general status of women and girls in France.

We also talked about the recent attack on Charlie Hebdo in Paris. In answer to a question about the French ban on head coverings and face scarves, which certainly affects Muslim women, Nathalie explained that France is trying to keep itself open to everybody, hence the country’s ban on the public display of obvious religious symbols, including head coverings and crosses.

Learn more about Dr. Bouet and her research here.

Apropos for the evening, we enjoyed a classic French dinner:
   French soupe à l’oignon
   Boeuf Bourguignonne with noodles
   Green salad
   Tarte aux pommes
   Sauvignon blanc

Photo courtesy of Brookhaven Lab

Monday, January 12, 2015

Peconic Bay Zonta Awards ESL Scholarship

Peconic Bay Zonta has awarded Inci Tubluk (center) a $300 scholarship. Mary Ann Miller (right) and Mona Rowe are members of the local group, which raises funds to support the scholarship.

Ms. Tubluk, a Turkish-American homemaker who resides with her husband and two children in Wading River, has successfully completed Level 3 of the English as a Second Language (ESL) program at Suffolk County Community College - Eastern Campus, in Riverhead.  She plans to continue her ESL studies so that she can communicate proficiently with her son’s teachers and eventually pursue a career.