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Soroptimist Portland

Educate. Empower. Enable.

Our mission

Our mission

Our mission is to improve the lives of women and girls through programs that provide them with resources and opportunities – to help them reach their full potential and live their dreams.

Soroptimist International of Portland was chartered in 1926.  We will be celebrating our 100th Anniversary in 2026! Women at their best, supporting and empowering women to be their best. 


“Soroptimist” is loosely translated from Latin and means “best for women.” Founded in Oakland, California, in 1921, Soroptimist International now operates in 120 countries around the world. We are part of Soroptimist International of the Americas (SIA), which includes Canada, Mexico, Japan, the Phillipines, and South and Central America. 


It is our passion to:

  • Enhance the education, health, human rights, and status of all women with our grants and award programs.

  • Join with other women to raise awareness about and take action against domestic violence and sex trafficking in our communities.

  • Provide girls with guidance, training, and resources that will prepare them for personal and career success.

Our programs
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Our programs

  • Live your Dream Award

  • Dream it, Be it

  • Grow Every Dream (G.E.D.) Program


Our club participates on a local level with several cornerstone programs of Soroptimist of the Americas (SIA), including Live Your Dream and Dream It, Be It. In addition, we sponsor club-level programs and provide support to local organizations.


Live Your Dream Award

This national program provides education and training awards to assist women who provide the primary financial support for their families. Recipients may use the awards to offset any costs associated with attaining a higher education, such as books, childcare, tuition, and transportation. Click to see the tremendous impact this program has had. And hear firsthand from women about the difference this award made in their lives.

In support of this program, Soroptimist of Portland provides several cash awards each year. Award winners from local clubs become eligible for a Region award and the Region winners for a Federation award.

Many of our recipients are survivors of domestic violence, trafficking, or sexual assault. Nearly all have overcome enormous obstacles including poverty, domestic violence, and substance abuse. But in addition to changing lives, this program is helping to change society

For questions, please contact Wanda Costi.

Dream It, Be It

In support of this program, our club partners with Girls Inc.’s Eureka! program, to provide career support to motivated girls in middle school. 


By providing professional role models, career education, and other resources, this program helps girls to grow up to become confident, successful, happy adults. In small groups, the girls learn about the importance of values, to set and achieve goals, and to develop resilience to overcome obstacles and move forward after failures.


To learn more about the program, click here. If you work with girls – or if you're part of an organization that would like to partner with us – please contact Wanda Costi.

Grow Every Dream (G.E.D.) Program

A new program in development to assist women/girls access support to pass their High School Equivalency Test (GED).

Human Trafficking Project

Soroptimist of the Americas (SIA) launched the STOP Human Trafficking project in 2008. Given that our I-5 corridor is a major route for transporting young girls, SI Portland supports this project through awareness and advocacy. This effort includes supporting organizations that work to end sex trafficking at their conferences and fundraisers.

To report a tip or get assistance, call:

National Human Trafficking Resource Center hotline: 1-888-373-7888.

Or text HELP to: BeFree (233733)

Our events

Monthly Meeting
Monthly Luncheon & Meeting
Old Spaghetti Factory
11:30 am to 1:00 pm
First Thursday of each month
We'd love to have you join us -
please request more information at
Our monthly meetings

Our meetings are held on the first Thursday of each month. Each meeting will feature a guest speaker that supports our mission to serve women and girls.  In addition, these events include a business meeting and an opportunity to network and socialize with friends and members.

Thursday, January 4

Shannon Seet: Navigating Transitions to Senior Communities

Thursday, February 1

Our Annual Live Your Dream Awards, where this year we will present awards to three winners. Please join us to celebrate these amazing young women!

Thursday, March 7

Ashley Dorety was our Live Your Dream Award 1st-Place winner in 2019. She will be speaking about the Family Preservation Project (FPP) program at Coffee Creek, which she created when she was incarcerated. The program brings together incarcerated women and their children.

Thursday, April 4

Robin Miller: Supporting Trafficking Survivors on the Road to Freedom

Thursday, May 2

Business Meeting

Sunday, June 2

Rose High Tea Luncheon & Online Auction

Thursday, June 8

Jay Benke: Sex Trafficking Legislation – An Overview of the Oregon Landscape

Our events
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