SITS honored two local women this week, winners of the Live Your Dream and Ruby awards. They were recognized during the club’s meeting on March 11. Each received a check and certificate, and in the case of the Ruby Award, a donation also goes to the non-profit they represent.
The annual Live Your Dream award assists women who provide the primary source of financial support to their families by giving them the resources they need to improve their education, skills, and employment opportunities. Many of these women have overcome enormous obstacles including poverty, domestic violence and/or drug and alcohol abuse. Live Your Dream recipients receive a cash award which may be used to offset any costs associated with their efforts to attain higher education, such as books, childcare, tuition, and transportation.
The Soroptimist Ruby Award is designed to honor non-Soroptimist women who work to improve conditions for women and girls through their personal or volunteer efforts. The award honors the first federation President Ruby Lee Minar. The ruby is also a gemstone associated with wisdom, importance, vitality, strength, power and love. All words that embody a Ruby award winner.
LIVE YOUR DREAM – Teresa Lane
This year’s Soroptimist of Tahoe Sierra’s LYD recipient is Teresa Lane. A single parent of one teenage son, Teresa has overcome many struggles. A survivor of domestic violence and drug and alcohol abuse, she works and is taking classes in addiction studies at Lake Tahoe Community College. Teresa is one year away from an A.A.
“It is my dream to be able to help others and give back to our community. I would also like to break this cycle of poverty and addiction in my family and provide a new life for my son and me,” said Teresa. Her goal is to earn a bachelor’s degree and go back into the field of substance abuse treatment and help other women who have struggled with alcohol and substance abuse addictions.
RUBY AWARD – Cindy Cowen
This year’s Soroptomist of Tahoe Sierra’s Ruby winner is Cindy Cowen, former teacher with the Lake Tahoe Unified School District. She is being recognized for her volunteer work at Between Horses and Humans in Minden, Nevada. Between Horses and Humans (BHH) is a non-profit organization teaching leadership through horsemanship to children dealing with difficult life situations and personal challenges.
Cindy’s commitment to the Between Horses and Humans program and the children it serves helps to change lives and heal hearts. With the help of the horses, Cindy inspires and encourages the children to rise above their stories, to find self-love, and helps them find their gifts and talents. She is a believer that working with horses enhances the children’s ability to understand how to approach new situations with confidence, and handle miscommunications without frustration or anger, and to respect others. Barbara Slade, past president and current program director at BHH, stated that there are many success stories thanks to Cindy’s care and concern for the children of the Tahoe and Minden communities.
Congratulations to both of these ladies!