More than three decades of contributions by the local Zonta Club to the citizens of the Town of Amherst were recognized on Friday, Sept. 11, 2020, with a proclamation and the raising of the Zonta International flag.
“The Zonta Club of Amherst Area is part of a worldwide service organization that has 29,000 members in 63 countries that work for the advancement of the status of women, legally, socially and economically,” Mayor David Kogon said, before signing a proclamation declaring Sept. 13- Sept. 19, 2020, as Zonta Week in the Town of Amherst.
“It is organizations such as the Zonta Club who help make Amherst a great place to live, work and play, and enable us to say see why we love it.”
The COVID-19 pandemic has affected everyone, but it has been particularly hard on women, Angela Bourgeois, Zonta Club of Amherst Area president said.
“Women are disproportionately affected by economic downturns,” she said. “Gender-based violence has increased. With these realities, we can’t lose our footing. Now, more than ever, we must support women and girls at home and around the world.
“Our club would welcome new members, and partnerships, with those who share our belief that empowering women makes the world a better place.”
The Zonta flag will fly at the corner of Church and Albion Street throughout Zonta Week.
The proclamation noted that in the years since the club was formed in 1984, it has helped establish a transition house in Amherst and given donations over the years to many local organizations including Maggie’s Place, the International Women’s Day Committee and the Dec. 6 remembrance event.
It also noted the club continues to support Autumn House, provides annual education bursaries to mature women, supports the Amherst Food Bank Network and, when camps are open, sponsors young girls and disabled women so they can attend camps.