Community Tree Planting Event

Yesterday, a small group of dedicated and hard working girls from three different units in our district got together to plant native plant species in Stoney Creek Park. The event was organized by the 1st Burnaby Mountain Sparks unit, who had won a tree planting grant from Girl Guides of Canada & TD Bank’s Friends of the Environment. Helpers also came out from the 56th Guides and the 14th Pathfinders. This event was part of Girl Guides of Canada Operation Earth Action National Service Project. The event was also made possible with the support and expertise of the Stoney Creek Environmental Committee.

A truck load of plants

Overall the hard working girls and adult volunteers planted about 50 plants native to the area.In addition to the almost $500 worth of plants you see in the truck bed, there were donations from the Stoney Creek Environmental Centre’s Nature Garden. Our plants included

  • Snowberry
  • Wintergreen
  • Salal
  • Kinnik Kinnik
  • Oregon Grape
  • Salmonberry
  • Sword Ferns

Great teamwork, all day!

One interesting highlight was that there were salmon spawning in the stream as the group worked — it definitely helped remind all of us why we were there. Stoney Creek is an urban stream that successfully hosts salmon every year. The natural environment in that area is precious and also at risk. That’s why it is important for people to help protect and replenish the area’s environment.

Watching the salmon

It was a cool rainy day, and everyone got mucky. Girls worked in pairs with either a Guide or a Pathfinder paired with a Spark, and the older girls showed incredible leadership skills as they worked with their buddies to accomplish this task.

Working together

After the planting everyone got to relax in the Environmental Centre with hot chocolate, cookies, and rice krispie squares. The ladies from the Environmental Centre told us about some of their other local projects and everyone got to take home some goodies, including a neat key chain showing different salmon species.

A HUGE thank you goes out to everyone who came out for this event. It was a lot of work, but it was for a great cause. A special thank you to Gail and Christine from the Environmental Committee — we couldn’t have done it without them.

Sparks Pizza Pajama Party

Last weekend the 1st Burnaby Mountain Sparks had a sleepover pizza pajama party at Richmond Guide House. It was a great opportunity for the girls and leaders to get to know each other — and with the unit having 10 new girls, 2 new junior leaders, and 1 new Guider this year,  this seemed pretty important!

The decorated sleepover totes — really cute draw string backpacks sewn by Emerald.

Future fashion designers hard at work

Dinner, of course, was pizza. One of the highlights was the “movie theatre” where the girls got to watch The Lorax projected onto the wall. And it wouldn’t be a movie theatre without popcorn!

Getting ready to watch the movie

In the morning everyone was pretty sleepy, but a good time was had by all. The girls made new friends and some really great memories of their early days in Sparks.

Everyone is now excited for some of our upcoming events. Did you know that the Lorax speaks for the trees? He says that “UNLESS someone like you cares a whole awful lot, nothing’s going to change. It’s Not.” Hmm. I wonder what we could do if we had some trees… Stay tuned!

Brownie Camp Skills Sleepover

Last weekend the 54th Burnaby Mountain Brownies got to experience an introduction to camping from the safe (and dry… and warm) quarters of the Richmond Guide House.

Tawny Owl and the two Junior Leaders demonstrating tent set up on the porch

They had planned on tenting in the yard if the weather cooperated, but the forecast for stormy weather made them decide to set up their tents inside.

Girls — with some help — trying it out upstairs

In addition to tenting, the girls did a sewing craft to make a camp pillow, and ate barbequed hot dogs for dinner. They woke up to watch a movie in the living room and enjoyed a tasty breakfast before heading home.

Learning how to sew. They decorated recycled pillow cases too!

Everyone agrees that it was a great way for everyone to get to know each other and to practice camping skills. They loved the beautiful venue. Many thanks to the Guiders and Junior Leaders who made this overnight trip possible!

First Aid Training

This Thanksgiving weekend, six Guiders from our District spent time becoming certified in Red Cross Standard First Aid and CPR Level C.

Six brand new Red Cross certificates

This qualification actually exceeds the Girl Guides requirement for most kinds of activities — that so many of our leaders were interested in taking this course rather than the more common Emergency First Aid course shows how committed we are to girl safety and to being able to offer exciting programming. The Girl Guide motto, after all, is “Be Prepared!”

Leaders from both our Ranger units practicing a sling for a broken arm

The leaders learned about life-saving techniques such as CPR for adults, children, and infants, including use of automatic external defibrillators. They learned about how to deal with choking, head injuries, sprains, broken bones, allergic reactions (including anaphylaxis), heat exhaustion, heart attacks, and more.

Leaders from the 56th Guides doing a “tubular” sling for a dislocated shoulder

The trainer was an enthusiastic paramedic who kept the days fun. All six leaders had a great time learning about these important skills… although they sincerely hope they will never have to use any them!

Cookies are here!

This week, more than 2500 boxes of chocolatey mint cookies arrived for our District to sell. Cookies have been distributed to units, who have given them to girls this week.

Chocolatey Mint Cookies went on sale October 1st

This year, the cookies are coming out in awesome new packaging. The new look really highlights what Girl Guides is all about. What else is new about cookies this year? Well, although it has been true of our cookies for a few years now, we are now have the nut-free symbol right on the box. Also, trans fats in the chocolatey mint cookies have gone down by 90%.

Not only does cookie selling provide funds that help us run girl programming (they help subsidize camps, pay for craft supplies, etc) it also helps every girl develop confidence and business skills. From Sparks to Rangers, our girls proudly ask “Would you like to buy a box of Girl Guide Cookies?” and are eager to tell you they’re only “$5.00 a box!”