Guides on the Internet/Guides on the Air (GOTI/GOTA) Theme Camp

Margaret Keiser

South Africa

Our camp (South Africa)

At the start of the camp each girl (Guiders too!) was given a braid to tie around her neck (with a reef knot of course), as I had decided to award a different coloured bead for each contact made via the radio and the internet (email or chats). Eg. Pink bead for America, blue for Europe etc etc. This was planned as an incentive so that the girls would participate in each activity.... and it worked!!!

2. Saturday. Rising up time 6am (some girls were awake at 5:15am!!!). After airing our sleeping bags, a delicious breakfast and all the necessary duties were done, it was time for our "round-robin" at the 5 stations. Each patrol was given an hour at a station.

Station 1 was the ham radio, where our friendly ham operator (Dave) spent the whole day giving out our call sign, and making contacts for the girls to talk to. Unfortunately our reception was poor this year and the furthest we managed was to Zimbabwe. The guides nevertheless had a great time!

Station 2 was the craft table where the now "famous" Radio Rita was made (thanks to the ladies on this list), a miniature UHF radio, and a miniature computer motherboard. All 3 these items were displayed on the girl's hats for the duration of the camp! They looked great!

Station 3 was the computers...... no more needs to be said about this one!! There was always an "Oh no, please can we stay" at the end of each session.

Station 4 was the Packet radio operated by Richard where the girls were taught how to send a message. Each patrol chose a previously received message and then sent a reply.

Station 5 was the UHF radio, with one of my Rangers operating it (she has her licence!!). We managed to contact all the local scouts, guides and other youth groups participating in Pretoria. A lot of laughs, especially when you hear a group of scouts giggling on the other side!

Our evening activity was "morse code" (prisoner of war code). A neighbour made up 6 individual morse code blocks for us, which worked with a contact key and a LED light. The patrol leaders were sent out with a message which they had flash back to their patrol, and if the patrol got it right, there was a packet for a midnight feast waiting for them! This method worked very well.

We then let the girls have more time at the radio and the PC's before bed time.

Bedtime for Jo-Anne and I was again about 2am! Are we addicted??? :-)))

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