Since 1992, Mariet Verhoef-Cohen has been the Managing Director of Bacolet, a translating and subtitling company that handles all language combinations. However her greatest commitment and passion is to Soroptimist International (SI). SI is a world-wide volunteer service NGO organization for business and professional women who work to improve the lives of women and girls.
It comprises 95,000 women, with permanent representatives in the UN. Through a global network of members and international partnerships, this is achieved in local communities and throughout the world. This is done via projects that regional members are responsible for. As Federations President of Soroptimist International, Mariet Verhoef-Cohen started the theme ‘Soroptimists go for water’
All 68 countries of the SI Federation were thus linked. This drive was to empower women in those parts of the world where water was scarce, and aid sustained access to water more easily. The aim was to bring safe drinking water and basic sanitation within the reach of more people.
Mariet Verhoef-Cohen was responsible for the fundraising. She managed to get cooperation between governments, international development agencies, the business community, and society at large. She organised international partnerships such as the ’Women for Water Partnership’ and participated and presented a high level session in the World Water Forum 5 in Istanbul Turkey in 2009. The fundraising for the water project was an enormous success, with a record €2 million collected in just 2 years.
The name Soroptimist was coined by combining the Latin words soror "sister" and optimus "best", and can be taken to mean "best for women".