Over 70,000 women call Gippsland home. Gippsland Woman is for all women in Gippsland.
Gippsland Woman will provide a one stop shop for women to find events, services, groups and places for women across Gippsland.
Gippsland Woman is an opportunity for organisations to share, collaborate and support each other.
Gippsland Woman will help map what is available for women across Gippsland and will be a useful tool when planning events, activities and services to see what is available around the region.
Gippsland Woman started as a Women’s Networking Event, sponsored by Soroptimists International (Gippsland). Over thirty women, representing twenty organisations, came together to share stories of the work they are doing to support women and families, and drive Gippsland forward. Each group was asked four simple questions: who they were, what they did, what can they offer and what do they need.
The stories were incredibly inspiring – from empowering foster care kids to make their debutantes to establishing schools for orphans in Sudan. However, the night also presented the opportunity for people to ask for and offer help. The willingness to share and collaborate was overwhelming, with groups who did not previously know of each other solving mutual problems on the spot.
One of the key gaps identified on the night, was a need to bring this information together in one place. How – as a new person in town do you find out about the community groups out there? How – as a woman planning for significant change, do you learn about the support networks in the community? And how – as an organisation, do you work collaboratively with other groups to seek funding opportunities?
Following this, two other meetings were held, expanding our network to around 40 organisations from across Gippsland. The needs were further refined:
- a webpage to showcase each of the organisations and allow women to get a feel for the organisations and services before they step through the door;
- a calendar that not only advertises events, but allows for strategic planning for fundraising activities;
- a platform where organisations can collaborate on projects, posting either support they can offer or needs they may have.
From this, Gippsland Woman was born. Soroptimist International Gippsland’s vision is to create a network of women who are driving Gippsland forward, to work collaboratively with other women’s organisations, to facilitate partnerships, to create awareness of women’s services so they are well supported, to find the gaps in services and help fill those gaps, to be innovative, to be strategic and to continue to make a difference.
The project has been supported by a significant donation from Gippsland Women’s Forum – due to alignment objectives, and recently was successful in being awarded a grant for the Latrobe Health Assembly.