Clubs and Community: Teen girl guide Ellie speaks out about violence against women

Girl guide Ellie Dibben (far right) spoke at a conference on violence against women. PNL-140731-111017001
Girl guide Ellie Dibben (far right) spoke at a conference on violence against women. PNL-140731-111017001

All the latest news from clubs and community groups in your area.

A young Girlguiding member from Hemel Hempstead has spoken out during a major conference held to discuss violence against women, in her position as a member of the Girlguiding’s Advocate panel.

The conference, organised by Rt Hon Yvette Cooper MP, Shadow Home Secretary, was held at the UNISON Centre in London on Monday, July 7.

It was a chance for Ellie Dibben, 17, to speak out about body image and the pressure that affect girls.

Attendees included founder of the Everyday Sexism project Laura Bates, activist Caroline Criado Perez, and No More Page 3 founder Lucy Holmes.

As a Girlguiding Advocate, Ellie discussed issues that affected her and other young women, and seeks change UK-wide. Advocates also play a major role in Girlguiding’s advocacy work and Girls’ Attitudes Survey research.

In 2013 the Girls’ Attitudes Survey found that 75 per cent of girls and young women feel that sexism is so widespread that it affects most areas of their lives.

Ellie, who is also a brownie leader at the 1st Potten End Brownies, said: “Hearing the survivors’ stories really opened my eyes to the reality of domestic violence and female genital mutilation. I’d never fully grasped the impact before and feel privileged to have been able to listen to these women.

“I spoke about body image, which is undoubtedly an issue that everyone can relate to.

“The needs of women and young girls are often overlooked, and so I was keen to take this opportunity to speak about the issues we wish to see addressed. I am interested in these issues as they impact our everyday lives.

“It was a privilege to be able to represent Girlguiding and share my views with a room full of such incredible people- the atmosphere of the whole event was inspirational in itself.”

Bra-vo for Wendover Rotary Club

The Rotary Club of Wendover and District set themselves a tough target when three years ago they set up a bra collecting project that would help many women in third world countries, while also raising much need funds for breast cancer research.

Leading regional law firm Pictons, which supports many charity and local community projects, took up the challenge and helped the rotary club to achieve their target of collecting an astonishing 15,000 bras.

Drenne Dunphy, a family law specialist solicitor at Pictons offices in Tring said: “Every woman has a few old bras stored away in their closets and with a little encouragement we were able to collect hundreds of bras through our four offices in Luton, Hemel Hempstead, Milton Keynes and Tring.

“It’s for a great cause and these small items of clothing can make a big difference to the women in some of the poorest countries in the world. Any of the bras not sent abroad were sold on as material waste and the money raised from that went directly to research for breast cancer.”

The Rotary Club of Wendover and District and their BUST group (Breast Uplift and Support Team) received contributions from a number of businesses, including Pictons. They also collected bras from Wendover, Herts, Bucks, Berks, Ireland, Scotland Wales, Cornwall and even Germany and France. By the ‘D-Cup-Day‘ they had collected 15,801 bras.

Drenne said: “Pictons got a special mention ‘in despatches’. It was a great way to encourage staff and visitors to our offices to bring in their old bras. It’s been a great project to be part of and the Rotary Club of Wendover and District have done a truly amazing job.”

Tales and music from the First World War

Members of the Gade Social club enjoyed an afternoon of seriousness and fun at their meeting when 20 members listened to Margaret Holmes as she related how the First World War started and about a family who were affected by the war and how they coped.

Margaret told how they felt when one of the sons joined the army and the thoughts of his girlfriend and how horrific the war was in general especially the gas which killed 10,000. Margaret interrupted her talk every now and then by playing songs of the war .

Sylvia Timms thanked Margaret for her interesting talk.

After a cuppa members took part in a quiz about film stars - quite puzzling but enjoyable,

For inquires about the club call 01442 262156.

Annual meeting for chalkstream group

The Chilterns Chalkstream project held its annual forum at the Box Moor Trust centre , London Road.

The conference drew nearly 50 visitors and included a number of speakers from the Environment Agency, the Riverfly Partnership, Affinity Water, ColneCAN and the Box Moor Trust

Chalk streams are a characteristic and attractive feature of the Chilterns landscape. They are also a globally rare habitat. In fact, of the 200 or so chalk streams in the world, more than 160 are found in England.

They are important habitats and are home to some of our most threatened plants and animals, such as the water vole and brown trout.

The afternoon was spent on the Moors looking at the work undertaken by volunteers on the River Bulbourne back in April. A short stretch was remodelled using large branches and other woody material. Slowly the flow of the river is forming curves and returning to something like its natural state.

Summer gardening tips at Kings Langley Women Institute

We welcomed six visitors to our meeting in June.

Our speaker for the evening was Maria Coote, who gave a very informative and fascinating talk on summer gardens, with lots of useful tips on plants suitable for different areas of a garden.

A report was given by one of our members who attended the national annual meeting held in Leeds, where one of the speakers was Bill Turnball.

The competition Cup was awarded to Janet Porter.

Our meetings are held at 7.30pm in the Community Centre, on the second Tuesday in the month

All ladies welcome enquiries to: - Mrs Linda Brady 01442 831763 or Mrs Rene Gardner on 01923 264754.