Kitty Sorgen, Jill Urbach win Soroptimist's Ruby Award for work in Kenya

Kitty Sorgen and her daughter, Jill Urbach, were awarded the Ruby Award by Soroptimist International of Friday Harbor for their work founding a quilting project in Kenya.

Sorgen and Urbach both traveled to Kenya to found a quilting project run under the non-profit Oasis Africa, which sponsors a school in the town of Mashaka. Mothers of students at this school learned the skill of quilting as a source of income while also developing a community and support system for one another.

"Their children will benefit immediately with needed food and clothing, but they also benefit from their mothers’ newfound sense of self-worth," Soroptimist wrote in an announcement about the award.

Soroptimist presented Sorgen and Urbach with certificates at a club meeting and have submitted their names to the Northwestern region level of Soroptimist International. The winner of the finalist award will receive a $5,000 donation to a charitable organization of the winner's choice.

For more information on Soroptimist projects, visit

Each year, Soroptimist International of Friday Harbor recognizes an inspirational woman for the Ruby Award.

"The Ruby Award For Women Helping Women (formerly the Soroptimist Making a Difference for Women Award) acknowledges women who, through their personal or professional activities, work to improve the lives of women and girls. The work of these women helps to promote the issues that are important to the Soroptimist organization. Honorees are ordinary women who have worked in extraordinary ways to benefit women and girls."

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