Local Girlguiding UK members from Greater London Kent County age 16 – 26 are preparing for a Service Project in Namibia next summer. The group of fourteen participants and three leaders are going to work at ‘Beautiful Gate’, a mission home for orphaned and abandoned children in the capital, Windhoek, for two weeks. Beautiful Gate is affiliated to the mission organisation ‘Youth With a Mission’ and was established to meet the needs of children affected by the HIV/AIDS pandemic.
The GLK group, many of whom are leaders with local Guide and Brownie groups, will be organising an adventure camp for the children, as well as running after-school clubs and sports, and taking part in community visits.
The trip has grown out of an idea to develop meaningful international service projects on a local level, and a tough selection weekend was held in mid-September to choose the group. Participants were given the opportunity to demonstrate their skills through representing a fictitious country at a specially arranged world summit where each contingent had their own conflicting agenda.
The next day, participants were warned that twenty-five Brownies were about to appear, which they did, eager to be entertained. The Brownies were fully briefed and made honest comments about each of the applicants! We had a good feeling about the group from the outset and are confident that we have chosen a cohesive and able group of Senior Section who will do important work whilst representing Girlguiding UK in Africa. We are now looking forward to several training weekends and fundraising events over the next ten months.
The ‘GLK Africa Challenge’ is being developed, which will raise money for the work of the home. The tiniest Rainbow Guide through to the oldest Trefoil Guild member will be able to participate in the Challenge which will have a fundraising element and culminate in the awarding of the ‘GLK Africa Challenge Badge’.
Helen Beecher Bryant, Project Leader