A glimpse of The Helen Storrow Seminar

2019-03-26 06:00
Sadie Wiseman

Sadie Wiseman

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How much do you know about the Girl Guide World?

Sadie Wiseman from Kenilworth gives an insight following a week-long seminar she attended at Adelboden in Switzerland earlier this year.

The 19-year-old second-year chemical engineering student had a chance to attend The Helen Storrow Seminar in January and says it gives young people from around the world the chance to connect on environmental issues they care about and take the lead as agents of change in their communities.

Mostly, the programme is designed to equip girls from the age of four up to 25 with leadership skills. Programmes are said to be well-rounded and include first aid, outdoor adventure, leadership, guiding and historical knowledge, social and environmental responsibility, arts and crafts and technology.

“A girl joins the unit closest to where she lives and attends their weekly meetings. For me, that was Rondebosch Guides. There are four age group divisions, each with their own programme and advancement levels – Teddies for ages four and up, Brownies for ages seven and up, Girl Guides for ages 10 and up, and Rangers for ages 14 to 18.”

And some get an opportunity to be part of the annual seminar, where girls get more exposure in the deep context of the programmes as they would be encouraged to brainstorm ideas for their preferred programmes, which they would later have to implement, making them a reality.

At the seminar, Wiseman chose to focus on normalising eco-bricking in Cape Town.

“I felt that it was a great way to put non-recyclable waste to use. And after encouraging people to make eco-bricks, I wanted them to be used in the building of houses and classrooms.”

She says she has not implemented the idea due to the demand of her studies and that she still needs to conduct thorough research as she is not sure if it is legal to use eco-bricks in any formal construction projects.

Wiseman says being part of Girl Guides means taking an oath to do good for others as well as being honest, brave, considerate, respectful, loyal, friendly, and careful.

She has been with the Girl Guide since the age of 10 when she was encouraged by her parents to join. When she turned 18-years-old last year she had already learned a lot and knew she wanted to grow more and also share her knowledge with others as well.

She says The Helen Storrow Seminar “The biggest way” in which the seminar helped her was to push her through the different stages of planning a project.

“It can be tricky to progress from haphazard ideas to a concrete timeline, but the facilitators at the seminar designed templates and gave us advice to help us do just that. Naturally I feel better equipped now to instigate my project.”


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