Refugee Welcome Cards

At the recent Burnaby Mountain District camp, girls had a great time all weekend with the theme “Camp Flower Power.” Activities were designed, where possible, to fit around the concepts of peace and love. This didn’t only involve tie dye (though it did, of course, also involve tie dye!). The camp’s program coordinators incorporated a service project for all girls at camp to put the idea of peace into practice. Girls of all ages spent some of their time at camp making welcome cards and letters for refugees arriving in Canada.

FlowerPower (1 of 1)-2

Girls took the task very seriously and spent time thinking about how and why refugee families need to be welcomed. The considered what kinds of tips they could give about Canadian culture and how they could help newcomers feel more comfortable. In their messages, girls wrote things such as the following:

Welcome to Canada! I hope you like it here. In Canada we respect everybody.

I hope you feel safe here and make lots of friends. In Canada people are nice to each other and play games like hockey.

Some of my favourite activities are swimming, gymnastics, and being a Brownie. What do you like to do? You should try maple syrup when you’re in Canada.

In Canada it rains a lot. But that’s ok, just get an umbrella. It’s nice here.

This week, two of our adult volunteers visited ISS of BC to deliver the cards and get a tour of one of their welcome centres. Our Guiders were blown away by the important work being done by this organization and were amazed by the courage and strength of the refugees that they were told about. One of the Guiders described the experience as life changing.

The people at ISS of BC were touched by the thoughtful cards and letters and assured us that gestures like this can make a major difference to refugee families when they arrive.  Feeling welcome and finding a sense of community can be important factors in how well refugees settle into Canadian culture. The girls of Burnaby Mountain District were given a lovely thank you card, pictured below.

Burnaby Mountain District is proud to have been a part of such an experience and looks forward to finding other ways to spread messages of peace and welcome throughout our communities, especially to people in situations like this who need it the most.


District Camp Flower Power

Burnaby Mountain District was thrilled to wrap up the 2015/2016 Guiding year with a District Camp at beautiful Camp Olave last weekend. Guiders have been busy planning and promoting this camp since February of this year — hosting a camp for 78 girls and 20 adults is a lot of work! But it was worth it. Camp Flower Power was a great success.

One of the great things about District Camp is it encourages girls to make new friends and experience the sisterhood of Guiding. Girls from all Burnaby Mountain units were mixed up on three sites (two for Sparks/Brownies and one for Guides/Pathfinders/Rangers) so they got to meet lots of new girls and leaders.

FlowerPower (1 of 4)

Stay tuned for more posts about camp with lots of pictures from different activities — since most units are now done until September, we’ll be posting about camp a few times over the summer.

FlowerPower (4 of 4)

Thank you so much to the hard working core staff volunteers who coordinated organization, transportation, accommodation, program activities, and health and safety for this camp. Thank you as well to all the hard working Guiders who worked as site Guiders, patrol Guiders, program leaders, and quartermasters all weekend. Girls had a great time!

District Safari Camp

June 13-15, girls from all branches gathered at the lovely Camp Olave on the sunshine coast for Burnaby Mountain’s district camp. Approximately 60 girls from 9 different units attended.


Ocean view and some local wildlife on the porch of a residential site at Camp Olave.

What make district camp different from a regular unit camp? Most often when girls go to camp they camp with their unit which means spending the weekend with the girls and leaders they see every week. It is a great way to deepen friendships and bond with people you already know. District camp is special because the girls get to make new friends and get a better sense of the sisterhood of Guiding. At this camp, all of the Sparks and Brownies were mixed together across three different residential camp sites. The Guides, Pathfinders and Rangers all camped together on a platform tent site. This was a new experience for many of the girls, but they rose to the challenge and enjoyed mixing with different girls their own age.


Girls from the lion and tiger patrols showing off their masks.

The theme for this camp was Safari. Girls had a blast going through activities in their animal-themed patrols. They did crafts like make binoculars, animal print change purses, and animal masks.


Other highlights included camp classics like swimming in the ocean, singing around a campfire, and making s’mores.

HUGE thank yous to all of the leaders who came out to make this district camp a great success. Thanks especially to the core staff who worked throughout the year on promoting, planning, and running the camp — a huge amount of work goes into an event like this one, and girls loved every minute.