Stuck in the never ending cycle of Canadian winter weather, leaving on a jet plane for a far flung corner of the world seems like a pretty good idea right about now. As we celebrate World Thinking Day on February 22, it’s the perfect time to consider the opportunities we have in Guiding to see the world – and ourselves – in a whole new way.
Each year on World Thinking Day, girls participate in activities and projects with global themes to honor their sister Girl Guides and Girl Scouts in other countries. This year’s World Thinking Day theme focuses on girls’ education, and Canadian Guiding has always focused on sparking girls’ interest in the greater world and educating girls on global issues that will inspire them to take action.
It’s almost impossible to put into words the transformative effects of an international Guiding experience. For both girls and Guiders alike, it’s about more than just going somewhere new and doing something different. The beautiful thing about international Guiding is that you’ll get that amazing feeling of being part of something inspiring, supportive and powerful. The journey is about so much more than just getting from point A to point B. It’s about who you were before you left, and who you become by the time the trip is over.
When I was a Brownie in Lethbridge, Alberta, I never would’ve imagined the amazing places Guiding would take me. I have been so fortunate to meet so many amazing Guiding sisters on my travels to Mexico, Peru, South Africa and the United Kingdom. Along the way, I discovered the distinct magic of each country and discovered that through Guiding, we are all truly part of something bigger. We are all working towards supporting a world where girls have unlimited opportunities to learn and to make their mark.
And when you come back from a trip? Often, the journey continues. You have the chance to put the ‘new’ you into action, to keep the momentum going and apply what you learned about yourself right now and into the future.
Being a member of Girl Guides of Canada and the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts (WAGGGS) can truly take you anywhere. Where will Guiding take you?
By guest blogger Chris Burton
Chris Burton, from Lethbridge, Alberta, is Girl Guides of Canada’s International Commissioner, and was Chief Commissioner from 2009-2012.