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Trinidad and Tobago Sister Society Meeting November, 2019

On Saturday November 9th, 2019 the Trinidad and Tobago Sister Society (TTSS) of the Global Women’s Leadership Network (GWLN) hosted its November Sip and Paint Networking event. This event was held as the culmination of the Society’s Credit Union Month events. Over twenty (20) persons from ten (10) credit unions came together at Neal and Massy Credit Union’s Rooftop facility to participate in the event.

Guest speaker Camille Selvon-Abrahams, Animator, Multimedia Producer and UTT Lecturer encouraged participants to embrace the power of Art especially in these times when especially our young people are looking for unique avenues to express themselves. Specially invited guest, Dr. Monica Davis, Honorary Consulate to The Bahamas, was also presented with the efforts of fund raising done by the TTSS for the Bahamas Sister Society, in their rebuilding efforts from Hurricane Dorian.

The main activity for the afternoon was led by local Artist Paulette Narinesingh, who brought out the hidden artists in those present.

Trinidad and Tobago Sister Society’s Co-Founders Gail Rajkumar and Jamila Draper strongly believe that credit union women can play a major role in helping women and girls. They can be agents of change- helping them to develop themselves, achieve their ambitions and lift themselves out of poverty, or unhealthy situations. There is a collective responsibility to Credit Union members and communities to move the needle of the sustainable development goals using the co-operative principles of co-operation among co-operatives, by caring for community and continuous education.

Arizona Sister Society Chapter Meeting: March 20, 2019

Arizona Sister Society met at Arizona Central Credit Union on March 2O. It was an outstanding opportunity to network and learn, be inspired and to inspire others, advance the credit union industry and help the community!

Our host, Traci Spears, talked about her Leadership Journey. She showed us how the journey can have many twists and turns, but she prevailed to create a career in credit unions that enables her to develop her own strengths and contribute in ways that reflect her values. Arizona Central – and the credit union industry – is fortunate to have people like Traci! 

The meeting’s guest speaker was Tyler Valentine, President/CEO of Laramie Plains FCU who presented "Overcoming Perceptions, Stereotypes and Generalizations to Build Stronger, more Inclusive Credit Unions." His comments, with discussion and group engagement, highlighted the strengths we all bring to the workplace -- and the biases, as well!

The group donated a total of $610 to Ryan House, a local charity service that provides respite and palliative caregiving program for children in Phoenix. Pepper Kincaid, a dynamic volunteer who has also been a caregiver in her own family, represented the organization. She told about her experience as a volunteer and how essential this kind of support is in helping families with critically ill children.

GWLN Ambassadors Martha Rozen and Marquetta White provided an update on GWLN progress, celebrating the 10-year anniversary.

Chapter Leader Karen Bejarano invited volunteers with connections to local museums or institutions to consider hosting or helping with a wine or artistic evening gathering for the group in July.

GWLN Strategic Planning

Excellent engagement with GWLN Leaders around the world. Talking mission and purpose! Developing initiatives that will be implemented in 2019! Celebrating results and building scale! -Sue Mitchell

Trinidad and Tobago Sister Society- June 16, 2018

Credit Union Women discuss Economic Development 

On Oct. 18, 2018, credit union members around the world will celebrate International Credit Union Day®, an annual event to commemorate the credit union movement’s impact and achievements. This year marks the 70th anniversary, a platinum celebration and the theme for this year’s celebration is “Find your Platinum Lining”.

The ultimate goal is to raise awareness about the tremendous work that credit unions and other financial cooperatives are doing around the world and give members the opportunity to get more engaged.

As a lead up to this year’s celebrations, the Trinidad and Tobago Sister Society (TTSS) of the Global Women’s Leadership Network (GWLN), hosted its inaugural Women’s Forum on Saturday June 16, 2018. This event was held in partnership with the Caribbean Confederation of Credit Unions (CCCU) as part of the CCCU 2018 convention, held at The HYATT Regency Hotel. In keeping with the theme for International Credit Union month, this Forum brought together over seventy (70) persons from twenty-five (25) credit unions including regional Co-operative Societies, at Paradise Villa, Paramin to participate in the forum titled “The Role of Women in Economic Development”.

The objective of the forum was to provide an opportunity for women in all stages of their professional credit union journey to network; gain new insights on credit union trends; develop new skills and participate in the global credit union movement. 

Guest speakers Tammy O’Hara, VP Sales & Member Relations, CUES; and Angelique V. Nixon, PhD, UWI, built on this platform. They encouraged participants to embrace “Women Empowerment”. The overarching theme among the presenters was the importance of empowerment, gender equality and equity – in both professional and personal capacities. Minister of Trade and Industry, Senator the Honourable Paula Gopee-Scoon was also a guest at the function and she addressed the group on the issue of women and their impact on sustainability and national development. 

Sister Societies serve as autonomous chapters of the GWLN. They further the Network’s global mission by making a local impact in their credit union communities. The purpose of the groups are to get local credit union women together, exchange ideas, impact local credit unions, and share information with other network members.

Trinidad and Tobago Sister Society’s Co-Founders Gail Rajkumar and Jamila Draper strongly believe that credit union women can play a major role in helping women and girls. They can be agents of change- helping them to develop themselves, achieve their ambitions and lift themselves out of poverty, or unhealthy situations. There is a collective responsibility to Credit Union members and communities to move the needle of the sustainable development goals using the co-operative principles of co-operation among co-operatives, by caring for community and continuous education.

We hope that the participants were able to gain and apply knowledge from this forum when they returned to their credit unions. For further information, please email TTCUSisterSociety@outlook.com or call 1(868)759-3292.

Congratulations GWLN

Thank you to Elevations Credit Union for donating the development of our new GWLN app! Excellent news for our members, worldwide! Sue Mitchell

Fund Raising Program By Sister Society Narayani, Chitwan Nepal


  Pramita Dhakal

  GWLN Sister Society Narayani, Chitwan Chapter  


GWLN Sister Society Narayani, Chitwan Chapter , Nepal  organized  fund raising program on July 16.  Fund was raised by putting on Heena Tattoo on women's  palm. Those who put on the heena on their palm  donated  fifty rupees (Nepali Currency) for the task to be done.  Nearly one hundred  women participated in the program  and  Seven thousand Five hundred and fifty rupees ( Nepali Currency)  was  raised. Though this seems a little amount, but  the way  the event was able  to call all the women in one place and change the traditional fashion statement a way of earning is remarkable.

The concept of organizing Mehendi ( Heena) function came from the traditional values and practice in Nepal. In Nepal  there's a ritual of decorating hands and feet by a particular herb  whose scientific name is  Lawsonia inermis  in the last day of the month Ashar according to Nepali Calender which falls in July . Nepal, being a nation whose near about half of the citizen depend on traditional agriculture for livelihood has its own typical reason to celebrate this ritual. People  work on muddy and wet land to grow paddy "the main food" in the month of Ashar ( June/July). People's  hands and feet used to get infected , different itchy diseases and rashes  were seen as the result. Thus to get rid of those ugly looking hands and feet our ancestors  used the herbal product Heena which works as  ayurbedic medicine too. It was believed after working near about a month in the field i.e late June to early third week of July which is the last date of Nepali month Ashar , the next month Shrawan was welcomed with colorful beautiful hands and feet and celebrated the festive" Shawane Sankranti" also known as first date of the month.  It has a long history of the practice here in Nepal. By now the tradition is followed to put on Heena/ Mehendi on hands though most of the people don’t work in the field like before. Though male and female both used to put on the herb to decorate their palms and feet in earlier days now adays most of the female only put on the heena. It has become like a fashion statement too. People specially women put on Heena in different pattern and in different form. Special courses of Mehendi design is run to train students so that they can start as a profession too.

Thus, GWLN Sister Society Narayani, Chitwan Chapter  thought of raising the fund among women by giving their traditional belief a professional and business  touch.  Those women who were for sure to put on  heena in the evening  to celebrate the festival were even more happy to gather socially and participate in the program . Women leaders  Parbati Silwal and Reena Gurung were the guest in the program. They were followed by  renowned  business women, activist, social worker and influencer whose presence made the program a big one. 

San Francisco Bay Area Sister Society celebrates 6 years!

On April 5, the San Francisco bay Area Sister Society held our first meeting of 2018. Patelco Credit Union in Pleasanton, California graciously hosted 25 attendees, including our special guest, Sue Mitchell. We took the opportunity at our meeting to celebrate our 6th Anniversary as a Sister Society (the first Sister Society formed)!
In keeping with our goal of education, our meeting also included a guest speaker who led a discussion on Sexual Harassment at the workplace.  We discussed the two definitions of unlawful harassment and what is not harassment, what companies can do in the #MeToo movement to discuss and respond to conduct in violation of their policies, as well as some ideas for how to respond to unwelcome conduct if it happens to you.
The local charity chosen for this meeting was New Day for Children Organization. New Day for Children seeks to recover children caught in the despair of child sex trafficking and to restore their stolen childhoods. In partnership, New Day for Children provides housing, school, medical and mental health care, horse therapy and more. They operate from safe and secure locations in the western United States (in our case, San Leandro, California). Working with law enforcement other faith based community organizations and families themselves, they provide for the needs of American girls ages 10 to 18 and 18+ (in separate programming) suffering from the desperation of human trafficking.  We are pleased to say that our Sister Society members donated $1150.00 to the New Day for Children Organization.

AZ Sister Society GWLN - A Leadership is Learning!

43 members of the The Arizona Sister Society gathered in Tucson, AZ on 8.23.17 including 2 female board members. Since we are focused on becoming better leaders within our respective roles, we spent the morning learning the importance of how we communicate in the workplace (verbally and non verbally) and it's impact on how the message being delivered is received.

Business Communications Lecturer, Lesli Pintor from The University of Arizona Eller College of Management presented on the topic "From Competence to Confidence" which provided real life applications to show the value of intentional communication and it's positive impact/outcome or it's negative impact/outcome in the workplace. (Intention vs Perception) We left with concrete tips and techniques to help all us manage intention vs. perception in our every day communications.

To maintain and/or grow our CU Financial Literacy, training was provided in the areas of "Understanding Credit Union Financials" and "Understanding Credit Union Key Ratios" and delivered by CEO, Margaret Hunnicutt. Our goal is to help participants gain and apply knowledge from these sessions when they return to their credit union.

Impacting a charity is a foundation of GWLN and at this event we collected over $100 and 12+ boxes of donations for: Treasures 4 Teachers of Tucson, a non profit established to help provide supplies to teachers and their classrooms.

Sister Society of Tagum Cooperative, Tagum City,Philippines

The Sister Society of Tagum Cooperative visited the school children of Kuyas, Sto.Nino , Talaingod , Davao Del Norte , Philippines last March 17, 2017 for the feeding of the underweight children. There were around one hundred  school children who gained weight after 6 months of continuous feeding. Tagum Cooperative also distributed toothbrushes to the children which the later were so happy and thankful.....

Education a Key To Success

On 22nd October during Celebrations of ICU Day, Malawi Sister Society donated learners books and Teachers Guides to two schools in Thyolo District, Southern part of Malawi. We encouraged young girls to work hard in school because education is the key to success. 2015 in December, we donated several items to children's ward at Queen Elizabeth Refferal Hospital in Blantyre.  This is part of Community Outreach, we always plan for a charity activity each year.
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