Drinking chai… Learning to take a rickshaw to the market… Sharing stories with Girl Guides and Girl Scouts from India, the UK, Australia and Brazil…
I came home from my time as a Sangam World Centre volunteer last December with wonderful experiences, powerful insights and a commitment to global Guiding. While I couldn’t bring all of the amazing things about Sangam back with me, I did come home with a bit of the Sangam spirit, a spirit of belonging and connection, potential and possibility that I wanted to share with my unit at home.
Though Sangam is far away, you can bring a bit of the Sangam spirit to your unit, too. By running a meeting about Sangam, you are helping girls learn about global Guiding and introducing them to the opportunities for growth and discovery that the World Centres offer. Here are some activities that you can use to give your girls a taste of Sangam in your own meeting place. Most of these activities can be modified for use with each branch.
First, activities like these can help you introduce Sangam to your unit:
Sangam World Centre Question and Answer Hunt
Hide small pieces of paper with basic questions about Sangam around your meeting space. Questions can include “Where is Sangam located?” “When did Sangam open” and “What does the word ‘sangam’ mean?” Then, hide pieces of paper with the answers to these questions. Have the girls find and match the questions and answers. Information for the questions can be found on the Sangam website.
Find Sangam on a Map
Have the girls mark Sangam on a globe or world map. Mark your meeting place on the map as well and talk about how you could get from your meeting place to Sangam. You can also have the girls find the other World Centres on the map.
Plan an imaginary trip to Sangam
Older girls can use Sangam’s website to research opportunities to go to Sangam as an event participant, Communtiy Program participant, volunteer or intern. Younger girls can learn about activities Sangam guests can try and draw pictures of what they would like to do if they visited Sangam.
Next, your unit could learn a bit more about Sangam through activities like these:
Learn Come into Sangam and sing it with your unit
Lyrics, sheet music and an audio file of the Sangam song are available here.
Bring the games of Sangam to your unit in Canada.
Play a game from India
Run around while playing Cheetah and Cheetal or Musical Circles and learn some words through the game Colours. Instructions for these and other games can be found in the Sangam Resources Activity Pack, which you can download here.
Design your own Mehendi pattern
Mehendi is applied as a decoration to hands, arms, feet and legs for special occasions. You can find many examples of simple Mehendi designs online. Have the girls trace their hands on construction paper and then draw their own Mehendi designs on their paper hands.
Make your own Sangalee
Sangalee the elephant is Sangam’s mascot. Print Sangalee using the clipart available on the Sangam website and use this as a template for girls to make their own Sangalee out of paper, felt or fabric glued onto a background.
Make sweet lime soda
Similar to lemonade, sweet lime soda is a popular drink in Pune, the city where Sangam is located. To make sweet lime soda, mix a few drops of lime juice and some sugar into glasses of soda water.
The Thinking Day Tree at the Sangam World Centre.
Write a Thinking Day message to Sangam
As Thinking Day approaches, your girls can write Thinking Day messages to Sangam. Younger girls can draw a picture and send that as well. All Thinking Day messages received by Sangam are displayed on Sangam’s Thinking Day Tree. Mail your Thinking Day messages to Sangam at this address.
Guest post by Melissa Moor, who was a Sangam Volunteer from September to December 2013. She is now a Guider in Montreal where she studies law at McGill.