Soroptimist Nordic Leadership Academy 2017

by Johanna  Richardsson

Lead Image: Nordic Soroptimists discussing the SNLA concept with SI President Yvonne Simpson, Sofia, Bulgaria.

“We have something really good going on in the Nordic countries and we would like to share it with you. As you all know Soroptimists have a mission to Educate to Lead – to give young women a better chance to develop and to take on leadership roles in society, politics, work and many other aspects of modern life. We believe that this is of vital importance in the constant fight to improve life and human rights for women and girls in the world.

With that in mind and a wish to contribute, Soroptimist Nordic Leadership Academy (SNLA) was created and based on a model that started three years ago; a joint project of SI Struga (FYROM) and the SI Turkish Union. SNLA is an idea that manifested during Women Deliver 2016 in Copenhagen, as well as at the SIE Governors’ Meeting in Sofia, Bulgaria that same year. SI president Yvonne Simpson participated on both occasions, encouraging the idea of the academy which means a lot to us. Many people are involved in making this happen and the working group is led by Linda Schang from Stockholm.

Öland- Island of sun and wind, a beautiful setting for SNLA 2017

SNLA is a week of intensive education in the principles of leadership and self-development for young women. It will take place on an annual basis during the summer vacation in a Nordic country on a rotating basis starting in Sweden – Öland 26 -30 of June 2017. The academy will be held at Ölands Folkhögskola in Skogsby, close to the UNESCO World Heritage site of the Agricultural Landscape of Southern Öland. The participants will of course have the opportunity to visit this site.

All sessions will be in English and topics covered will include: Communicative Leadership, Mental Training, Presentation Techniques, Debating, SCARF-model, Team Work, Theatre, Project Planning, Intercultural Communication, Start up and Economics, Music and Emotional Intelligence. The whole spectrum of leadership will be covered – inside and out. Soroptimist International is a treasure chest of competence and experience in this field, and the presenters are mostly found within our own clubs. Special guests are invited as role models to share their stories in the evening after class.

We offer this opportunity to young women living in the Nordic countries – aged between 18-30, who are interested in leadership and want to make a contribution to society. We are hoping to fill the available 20-25 places with young women with as diverse backgrounds as possible, to further assist the process of integration in the Nordic countries.

Soroptimist Leadership Academy at Lake Ohrid, in the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, 2014

During and after the three sessions of the Leadership Academy in the Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia, the young women who attended showed a clear development of self-confidence and an ability to take the lead. Many have also formed strong network contacts to help support them in the future. In addition we spread the word about Soroptimism and the young women who get to know us are clearly potential future Soroptimists who can keep our organization moving forward”.

To find out more about the call for participants, (deadline 30 April), schedule, rules for recruitment and all other information please visit here:


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