We believe there is strength in numbers and that collectively we have the power to help other women and girls to live their dreams. As Soroptimists and change agents, you are very much a part of this initiative as we work together to increase our impact and expand our reach! We love and appreciate your support.
ABOUT Powered by Soroptimist, the LiveYourDream.org online community offers an alternative way to deliver our mission; strengthen and grow the Soroptimist brand; and increase resources to improve the lives of women and girls. Each volunteer decides their involvement level and how they’d like to engage or take action in a number of Soroptimist’s award-winning programs, which includes spreading awareness about causes such as access to education (Live Your Dream Award), empowering girls (Dream It, Be It), and ending violence against women (teen dating violence, domestic violence and trafficking). Currently, LiveYourDream.org is administered in English only and is predominately U.S. based.
LiveYourDream.org’s goals are to:
Advance SIA’s mission
Build recognition of the SIA brand
Be viewed as a thought leader in the cause for women and girls
Provide funding resources to advance the mission
Recruit and engage an online community
Retain SIA members and clubs
Recruit new members.
Watch the following video to see how it works!
Here are the main parts that make up LiveYourDream.org and help make this super community thrive:
Logo: The new logo has a sunrise/sunset and cyclical theme to reflect feelings of hope, inspiration and transformation. The circular shape resembles the sun (an evolution of the star from the previous logo). The artist experimented with positive and negative space to represent a female face (a representation of the women SIA serves), using expression to represent feelings of hope and looking beyond limitations. The gradients of color, moving from dark to warm, symbolize awakening and strength.
Website:http://www.liveyourdream.org. This is the home of the online community. This is where you can find all the tools to take action on a specific cause.
Volunteer Profile: Every action you take can be tracked in your online volunteer profile via the website. Here you have the ability to mark actions as complete, see your progress, and track actions and donation history. This is a motivating way to see how much you’ve done on behalf of women and girls each time you log in.
Actions: “Taking action” is the bread and butter of the LiveYourDream.org community. Actions can include anything from signing a petition or emailing congress to providing support to Live Your Dream Award recipients by distributing applications or mentoring. Users have a filtering option to choose their cause, the amount of time they have and the type of action that interests them (e.g., donate, share, pledge, advocate, take action offline).
Campaigns: Campaigns are another way to take action. Each month, LiveYourDream.org creates ways to combat issues facing women and girls, from developing petitions to fight equal pay to providing activities to help stop trafficking.
Blog: The Your Dream Blog is a place where anyone, including beneficiaries of Soroptimist programs (award recipients, women and girls), can go for inspiring articles, personal stories, tips and resources on education, career, finance and lifestyle. Past President Cathy Standiford's Focus On Women blog has been incorporated into the "Newsworthy" section of the Your Dream blog. Note: the Your Dream blog is a great place to direct your Live Your Dream Award recipients!
WednesDAYDREAMS: When you sign up for LiveYourDream.org, you will receive weekly inspiration in the form of an email to remind you to breathe, smile and dream.
Social media: Get daily inspiration, campaign updates, impact info and other news by following LiveYourDream.org on any of its social media pages – Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and Pinterest.
What is the LiveYourDream.org initiative?
LiveYourDream.org is an online volunteer network for a self-motivated community of people who wish to support woman and girls in thier quest to lead better lives, while gaining inspiration in their own lives. Its purpose is to reenergize SIA and increase our impact by offering an alternative way to engage others in delivering our mission, strengthening and growing the Soroptimist brand, and increasing our resources to improve the lives of women and girls.
How did the federation come up with the name, “LiveYourDream.org”? For many years, the idea of women achieving their dreams, particularly through the Live Your Dream: Education and Training Awards for Women (formerly the Women’s Opportunity Awards program), has been a part of the Soroptimist lexicon. Since 1998, the tagline for the Live Your Dream: Education and Training Awards for Women has been Reclaiming the Dream. The idea of people reaching their dreams is a particularly powerful one. It was determined that LiveYourDream.org would be an inspirational name for this initiative, including the online community. In addition, it complements the theme already associated with the Live Your Dream: Education and Training Awards for Women.
How does it work?
LiveYourDream.org connects online people interested in helping women and girls and inspires them to do “off-line” hands-on volunteer work in their local communities. The volunteer experience Dreamers receive through LiveYourDream.org is determined by how much time they want to spend, and which Soroptimist focus (education, trafficking, teen violence, etc.) they want to support. For people who want to actively participate in delivering a program, Dreamers can select what they want to work on from a menu of opportunities. For instance, if someone believes in the power of education to improve a woman’s life, they may choose to participate in the Live Your Dream: Education and Training Awards for Women program by identifying potential applicants, distributing applications and/or helping a woman complete the application.
How does LiveYourDream.org support SIA’s strategic plan goals?
The LiveYourDream.org online community business model is helping to accomplish all four strategic plan goals—impact, engagement, philanthropy, and recognition. It is a fun and “soft” introduction to Soroptimist, and encourages engagement with the Soroptimist mission—especially among women who increasingly seek online action opportunities and virtual community connection.
IMPACT: LYD.org helps us build capacity to increase the impact of SIA’s core programs: Live Your Dream Awards and Dream It, Be It.
ENGAGEMENT: LYD.org offers alternative action opportunities to individuals interested in participating in our programs and furthering our mission. Some of these volunteers may be enticed to join an existing Soroptimist club or form a new one.
RECOGNITION: LYD.org expands our digital reach (via social media and SEO) to increase global awareness of SIA’s programs to new types of volunteers and activists.
PHILANTHROPY: LYD.org attracts new funding partners and corporate sponsors and helps us build capacity to cultivate new donors, fundraisers and purchasers to increase revenue.
Why does LiveYourDream.org have its own website?
LiveYourDream.org is part of a critical marketing strategy with its own look and feel designed to energize the Soroptimist brand. The website is the home of the online community and the place to find all the tools needed to take action on specific SIA causes. The site appeals to individuals who want to engage in our mission but may not be initially attracted to the club model.
Why isn’t the “S” logo at the top of the LiveYourDream.org homepage?
The “S” logo is part of the Soroptimist brand; LiveYourDream.org has its own distinct brand, which is intentional. The LiveYourDream.org initiative is a strategy known in the marketing world as a “brand stretcher.” Branding is defined as the single idea a consumer/client/member has of an individual (Martha Stewart), product (iPhone) or organization (Soroptimist). It’s the sum total of all experience and values associated with the individual/product/organization.
Due to a declining service club industry, low name recognition, a relatively small membership base and a difficult name (in most but not all countries in which SIA operates), Soroptimist has a weak brand. Brand stretching is used to create new segments within an existing market. By reintroducing a sense of freshness and diversity, brand stretching is used to prevent the market maturity stage of an organization’s lifecycle. LiveYourDream.org is about updating SIA’s image and positioning. The Girls Scouts, which enjoys high name recognition but also suffers from an aging brand, undertook a brand-stretching campaign when it launched its “To Get Her There Campaign” to encourage leadership in girls.
LiveYourDream.org is fashioned in the same brand-stretching model to help strengthen Soroptimist’s brand. Once people sign up for LiveYourDream.org, they are introduced to Soroptimist programs through the individual volunteer opportunities. This is how LiveYourDream.org will serve as the gateway to Soroptimist. Ultimately, Soroptimist wants to be known as THE thought leader in the cause for women and girls and as THE organization that helps women and girls to live their dreams.
How do Soroptimists connect with LiveYourDream.org supporters?
As an online volunteer community, we encourage all Soroptimists tointeract with Dreamers via social media. Please note, the LiveYourDream.org database and all contact information is completely confidential, as is the information the federation collects for Soroptimist club members.
LiveYourDream.org is primarily designed for people who wish to engage with our mission on an individual basis. That said, we do direct Dreamers to explore Soroptimist club membership as one of their options to participate. In addition, the federation has developed a user-friendly, interactive map hosted on the SIA website to help potential members locate Soroptimist clubs. Check out the map on SIA’s website!
What is the appeal of LiveYourDream.org?
We find that only about 7% of those who fill out an introduction form become Soroptimist members. Yet, they have indicated they really want to improve the lives of women and girls by providing education opportunities and mentorship. Therefore, SIA has worked for several years to create ways for others to help deliver the mission outside of the traditional club model.
The volunteer landscape has changed dramatically since Soroptimist was founded in 1921. This is particularly the case since the advent of social media, which has revolutionized the way people volunteer and support causes. While there will always be people who desire a face-to-face experience, which Soroptimist will continue to offer through its clubs, many people wish to volunteer on their own terms that don’t include belonging to clubs, paying dues or attending meetings. After a lot of research and working with a branding/marketing firm, SIA believes that by offering program and volunteer opportunities through LiveYourDream.org, a whole new cadre of people can support the mission. In addition to a fun, encouraging environment, these people will be provided with ways to implement Soroptimist programs at their own pace and with the level of commitment they choose.
How is LiveYourDream.org different from what we’ve been doing before?
Originally, LiveYourDream.org was designed to be a fundraising and public awareness strategy. To some extent, it was successful as many clubs now talk about Soroptimist in terms of helping women to live their dreams and have branded their events with the “Live Your Dream” theme.
Now, LiveYourDream.org offers online volunteer opportunities based on Soroptimist programs designed for individuals to connect with our mission. They choose their cause and course of action based on how much time they have. LiveYourDream.org provides the tools online for Dreamers to take action offline in their own community. They choose from a number of causes including helping a woman gain access to education (Live Your Dream: Education and Training Awards for Women), ending violence against women (Teen Dating Violence and Workplace Campaign to End Domestic Violence), and stopping sex slavery (STOP Trafficking).
Can Soroptimist members sign up to participate in the LiveYourDream.org online community?
Yes! Club members are encouraged to sign up for the community—the more supporters the better our ability to increase our impact. We also want to give members a place to travel the path of self improvement and aspire to live their own dream. LiveYourDream.org is a great place to connect with other people interested in helping women and girls, celebrate the unique power of women, and become inspired and energized! The initiative will not succeed without participation and support from Soroptimist members, and will depend on members spreading the word and inviting friends, family, co-workers, etc. to sign up as well. Sign Up Here Today!
What will be asked of members and clubs?
The success of LiveYourDream.org depends on SIA members participating in the community and inviting everyone they know to sign up as well. Therefore, it is absolutely imperative that all SIA members sign up and invite their friends, family, co-workers, etc. to participate in the LiveYourDream.org initiative. Remember, there are no restrictions on LiveYourDream.org: young, old, men, women—anyone who is interested in helping women to live their dreams is invited to participate!
Will LiveYourDream.org “steal” members away from clubs?
Absolutely not! Non-members who choose to sign up for the LiveYourDream.org community will not be considered Soroptimist members, nor will they have any of the benefits conferred upon dues-paying members. Most people join and stay in Soroptimist because they desire the face-to-face interaction that club life offers. LiveYourDream.org offers alternatives for people who do not have the time, money, or desire to be part of a club. No Soroptimist who is happy with her membership would be tempted to trade it in to participate solely in the online community offered through LiveYourDream.org.
Will Live Your Dream replace Soroptimist?
No, LiveYourDream.org is powered by Soroptimist and acts as a branch to reach out to a new cadre of supporters to expand our reach. Soroptimist is based on a club model. LiveYourDream.org is based on an individual model. They don’t compete with each other. Rather, they work together to connect people to our mission of improving the lives for women and girls in local communities and throughout the world.
Soroptimists already know what it feels like to be part of a collective group working for the same cause. That is what many members say is one of the best parts of being a Soroptimist. LiveYourDream.org increases our impact by involving others who have the same goal to help women and girls. There are thousands, if not millions, of people who want to help create better lives for women and girls. We can build strength in numbers. The more people who sign up for the community, the more women and girls we can help.
Why should we support this initiative?
Clubs and members should participate in LiveYourDream.org for the greater good of the organization. LiveYourDream.org is a strategy that speaks to extending the mission of Soroptimist into the future by employing new and exciting avenues for engagement. It also has a goal of relieving the financial burden on clubs by providing new funding sources. It is true that LiveYourDream.org may not offer all clubs a direct benefit in terms of membership recruitment because the platform is targeted to people who want to volunteer outside of the club model. However, your leadership believes LiveYourDream.org is critical to the long-term health of SIA. Therefore, it is very, very important that everyone consider the greater good of the organization and fully support the LiveYourDream.org initiative.
How can clubs use the LiveYourDream.org strategy to boost membership and engage more people to help women and girls?
LiveYourDream.org’s goals include attracting new members to SIA and we hope some people introduced to the LiveYourDream.org concept will become part of a club’s extended network. Clubs can think outside of their traditional recruitment strategies and try a different approach with LiveYourDream.org. For example, check out this tip to see how SI/Rio Vista, CA (Founder Region) uses LiveYourDream.org as a way to complement its club’s efforts – they have about 30 “Dreamers” involved in their activities and one (who also was a former member) decided to rejoin the club! Another example is SI/Roseville (Sierra Nevada Region), which met with prospectives and when faced with objections about why they could not join (schedules and financial issues), the club offered the LiveYourDream.org alternative as a way of being involved. There are about 12 “Dreamers” who assist with fund raising events by providing extra hands and they work side by side with members at workshops and events. More ideas can be found in the Club Benefitssection of the LYD.org Guidebook.
What are the time and financial requirements to being part of LiveYourDream.org?
There are absolutely no time or financial requirements to be part of the LiveYourDream.org online community, and the choice about how involved people want to be is up to each individual. Some of the opportunities do suggest distributing Soroptimist materials, which are available for purchase. General donations, which are strictly voluntary, can be made to help support the programs offered through LiveYourDream.org. It is expected that in time many of the participants will want to either financially support the LiveYourDream.org community and its efforts to further deliver on SIA’s mission (increased impact), or become Soroptimist members.
Will Dreamers duplicate the work of existing clubs?
It is possible that people from areas with Soroptimist clubs could become LiveYourDream.org supporters. Although she will be interested in working to improve the lives of women and girls, she might not be interested in joining a club. If clubs become aware of Dreamers working in the community, please reach out to them as allies in accomplishing the SIA mission. If they are working in an area the club isn’t active, offer support for their efforts. If their work is overlapping with club work, strategize ways to include them. For example, if Dreamers are promoting the Live Your Dream: Education and Training Awards for Women, engage them in ways to build on the club’s efforts in the community. Maybe they can promote the award to new organizations, mentor applicants or serve as a judge. Welcome them into the network of women helping other women and girls. It’s a great opportunity to introduce them to your club and, even if they don’t want to join, they may want to help your club with its projects. This scenario is not much different than metropolitan areas with several Soroptimist clubs working on the same projects. SIA urges collaboration in this situation as well. Remember, everyone has the same good intentions and goals—to help other women and girls.
Is there a difference between LiveYourDream.org and the Live Your Dream Awards? Yes! LiveYourDream.org is Soroptimist’s online community, and should always be referred to as “LiveYourDreamDOTorg” or the “LiveYourDreamDOTorg online community.” Live Your Dream: Education and Training Awards for Women is SIA’s signature program, previously called the Women’s Opportunity Awards. It joins Soroptimist’s girl program, Dream It, Be It, in what we call the Soroptimist Dream Programs. These programs ensure women and girls have access to the education and training they need to reach their full potential and live their dreams. They are a true testament to what Soroptimist stands for and what we strive to do. Live Your Dream: Education and Training Awards for Women can be abbreviated to “Live Your Dream Awards” after first reference.