In July 2011 the OVA approved Oakmont Rainbow Women (ORW) as a recognized Club within Oakmont. On August 8, 2011, the first meeting was held, and ORW was born. Since then ORW has grown and changed. In spite of all the changes, we have stayed true to our original goals: socialization with others who have similar life experiences; education for membership about issues specific to lesbians; community service; and social support.
So where are we now? We have a Pride Parade, a Pride Picnic, SIGs, an active philanthropy program, and events like parties, concerts, comedians, and dances. And of course we still have meetings. We have a caring circle for short term help for members dealing with health challenges. We have an email address (firstname.lastname@example.org), a newsletter (The Gayzette) and a website (OakmontRainbowWomen.com). And members are woven deeply into the fabric of the Oakmont community, recognized for themselves and the organization. ORW is recognized as a group who can get things done for Oakmont.
In honor of ORW’s tenth anniversary, the ORW Board decided that it would be important to ask members what works, what doesn’t work, and what’s needed for the next ten years. An anonymous online survey was sent out 7/27/21. Five women completed a paper version of the survey. Once a member completed the survey she emailed the organization “done” and her name was entered into a raffle for a gift card from The Mill in Glen Ellen. A summary of the results was emailed to all members on August 15. The results of the survey will help guide our program development over the course of the next few years.
So how did ORW celebrate ten years? We had some summer “socials” in the West Rec picnic area, but August 12, 2021 was the first time we had an in-person meeting and celebration for vaccinated members on the East Rec patio. The social committee (Shirley Liberman and Margaret Livingston) provided some beverages and light refreshments and we got a chance to visit face to face. Kay Johnson was the lucky recipient of the gift certificate. What a night. Each table had rainbow flags and other table decorations. Each table also had a summary of survey results and on the reverse side, a brief history of 10 years of ORW. There was laughter and hugs, and a good time was had by all.