Soroptimist International East Bay lives out our organizational mission primarily within the communities of Castro Valley, Hayward and San Leandro. Together, we volunteer our time and talents to realize the mission of our global organization to improve the lives of women and girls.
We meet once per month throughout the year to plan, participate and enjoy a wide variety of successful community and Soroptimist events.
Our work is “food for the soul” and we have fun doing it! Join us.
Who We Are
Soroptimist is a global women’s organization whose members volunteer to improve the lives of women and girls through programs leading to social and economic empowerment. Approximately 76,000 Soroptimists in over 120 countries and territories support community–based and global projects benefiting women and girls. The organization is particularly concerned with providing women and girls access to education, as this is the most effective path to self-determination.
The name, Soroptimist, means “best for women” and that's what the organization strives to achieve. Soroptimists are women at their best, working to help other women to be their best. .
When first organized, back in 1921 in Oakland, CA, the Soroptimists met as a luncheon or friendship club, according to the first president's report, but not for long. President Violet was presiding at an inter-service council meeting, when Monroe Deutsch, vice-president of the University of California, Berkeley, suggested that these clubs (Rotary, Kiwanis, Soroptimist and Optimist) should exist for service, rather than merely for friendship.
From that day on, Service was the key word for Soroptimists. The stated purposes of the club then were "to foster the ideal of service as the basis of all worthy enterprise and to increase the efficiency of its members in pursuit of their occupations by broadening their interests in the social, business and civic affairs of the community through an association of women representing diverse vocations."
The first president's report further reflects that the projects during the first year included a "Save the Redwoods" campaign, a heating plant for the Rescue Home, establishment of a vocational guidance bureau in cooperation with the YWCA, which later was made a branch of the California Employment Service; and care of three destitute families at Christmas.