May 9th, 2012 was the annual ExploreIT event – an event that occurs at two universities and one technical school in Calgary, Alberta. The purpose of the event is to give grade nine girls the opportunity to explore information technology.
So what does this have to do with Girl Guides? Lots!
This year I was blessed with an awesome helper. A first year engineering student who volunteered her time to help me out and I really need the help! The session I and a good friend run requires moving desks out of the way and turning the room into the insides of a computer, it is titled “Computer Guts”.
The volunteers are asked to meet the girls for a particular session and lead them to the room where the sessions are being held. They are asked to help out during the session, which ranges from hang’n out at the session, to being a part of the team that puts it together. This is the fourth year that I have been involved in the program and this is the extent that most volunteers get involved, and I am thankful for this help.
This year my helper went way beyond what was necessary! She read the information that I put together for the session before arriving. She showed-up an hour early and helped move the furniture in the classroom, and she helped turn the room into a computer system. She was as involved in the running of the session as I was! She stayed for lunch, and when I told her she was free to go she came back and helped us put the room back to its original state!
Wow, what a superb young lady! We chatted and I was not surprised when to learn that she was a member of Girl Guides as a girl, and a recipient of the Canada Cord! Why was I not surprised? This is not the first time that I have seen young people go beyond what was required of them, to roll-up their sleeves, pitch-in and help until the task was complete – only to find out later that they were a member of Guides or Scouts. I truly believe that Girl Guides (and Scouts) is a factor in creating such awesome community members.
The story does not end here though.
It amused me greatly when she told me that the entire session reminded her of a Girl Guide meeting in structure and design. She intended this as a compliment. I laughed. I laughed because the whole session was originally designed for a Guide meeting. In my three years as a leader I have done a few trainings, and haven’t really seen how others run Guide meetings, but somewhere along the way I have learned how to create a Guide meeting. This means that our meetings must have some sort of signature to them in order for a fellow member to recognize it as a Guide meeting, even when out of context.
Guiding teaches us all both young and old. It has taught me how to share knowledge in a fun and informative way and it has taught many about the value of lending a hand. My young helper’s hands gave me the time to write this blog and deal with other matters before heading home. My young helper also allowed me to save some energy for the evening to spend on my kids. For this, I am most grateful and I am sure my helper will be successful in her life as she has learned the skills that Guiding provides.
Thank you Girl Guides for teaching us all.
By guest blogger Guider Shannon Jaeger,
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