Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Soroptimist Herning turns 40!


I was so fortunate to be a part of Soroptimist Herning's 40 year Birthday this month! The club began in 1971 and in fact, these ladies below are our active members who were the CHARTER MEMBERS back in 1971. What a legacy they have brought to the Herning area! 


I have met so many wonderful Danish ladies in this group, but at the 40 year birthday celebration, my circle of Soroptimist friends expanded a bit beyond the Danish borders....

In Soroptimist International each local club has "friendship clubs" around the world. These could be clubs that have a common project that the ladies are working on together; clubs that have a person that connects them or even clubs that are the "godmothers" of another group...which is the case for one of the Soroptimist clubs in Romania. The ladies in Herning were the ones that actually helped the Romania ladies get their group started 18 years ago, so that bond definitely makes them "friendship clubs".

4 of the Herning club's friendship groups were invited to the 40 year birthday celebration...... groups from Norway, Holland, Germany and Romania and the coolest part is that they were all represented here in Herning at our celebration. These ladies took time from their lives and families and used their own private budgets to travel to Herning, Denmark for the weekend..... it was great! I met ladies from around the continent who are working on the same goals as we are in Herning...... the betterment and development of women around the globe. It was amazing to all share about HOW we are working to meet the same goals that we all have.  


We spent the day at the Herning Museum, enjoying each others' company and sharing good food and good entertainment....such as: 


And then that night 40 of us met for dinner out in H√łgild, at the farm of one of our members. During the night each club (Herning plus the 4 visiting clubs) had to give a report of how its ladies are working to raise funds and raise awareness for women's education around the globe. Each club was asked to report in English, since that is the only common language amongst all of us. So here is where the night got REALLY cool....

At dinner I was sitting next to one of the ladies from Norway. Her English was not strong, so we had been talking at dinner in Danish and Norwegian--- I understood her and she understood me even though we were speaking two different languages together. It was great.... UNTIL.... she told me that she was the one who had to give the Norwegian club's report...in English and she was a bit nervous... so Would I be her Translator? She would give the report in Norwegian and I would translate it to English...

How could I say no? :-)
So she spoke in Norwegian....
My brain translated it to Danish....
and my mouth delivered it in English....
And it worked!

It was just one more example of how easy it is to reach out across our borders and make connections with people, regardless of where we come from and regardless of what language we speak. All it takes is a willing heart.

7 comments:

annuca said...

Oh wow - that must mean that your Danish is super good! I'm impressed :)

Jon said...

Awesome language skills! I am jealous!

ladyfi said...

What a lovely story. I've been invited to join a local Soroptimist's group but there meetings are always when I can't make it.

May said...

You are turning multi-lingual! :)

Jens said...

Are you a real person, Kelli? In this blog post you seem almost supernatural!

Well done.

Best regards,
Jens

Jens said...

Mads is one lucky Viking.

Mads and Kelli said...

You guys give me WAY too much credit! Danish and Norwegian are so close to each other, but I admit, I really had to pay attention. But thanks for the kudos. I just felt lucky to be asked!!