Guiding Around the World Project

Stephanie Martin
Guide Guider Birchlea District, Bramalea Division, White Oaks Area
Brampton, Ontario, Canada

I developed this project in 1997 as a way to increase my girls' interest in Guiding and Scouting around the world, and to allow them to experience a small bit of another country's' program in a "hands on" way.

To begin, I posted a note on Guiding Lists asking for members working in the same branch I do (include your branch name and age of the girls) who would be interested in becoming our partner for their country.

To begin, each partner will send an Introductory Letter (including Unit photo, map of where they are located, and a description of the Unit e.g. patrols, # of girls, favorite activities etc..) along with a Merchandise and Uniform Catalogue, and a Program book from their branch to the other Unit or Troop. Also include a game or song that is a favorite of your own Unit.

On a mutually agreed upon date (approximately) both Units will complete one Interest or Proficiency Badge from the other counties program. Ideally this would be a badge of the girl's own choosing. Use the game provided during the meeting and sing the song as part of campfire. Once completed each patrol can write a letter summarizing how they enjoyed the badge, game and any questions they had etc. Send the letters along with some small swaps, and the badges that the other Unit or Troop chose to work on (one for each girl). Keep in mind that it can take 2 - 3 meeting to complete the challenge. Now sit back and wait for your partner's package to arrive!

You may want to write to your own Guiding/ Scouting Organization to seek permission for the girls to wear the other country's badge on their uniform. If permission is denied, the badges will be a great addition to a camp hat, vest or blanket!!

Finally, go through your own program and give the girls credit for any program work they have completed by taking part in this project. Have your girls evaluate the project and make notes on how to improve for your next partnership.

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