Eloise Golden and Alison H attended the Girls World Forum in Chicago, Illinois as representatives for Girl Scouts of Central California South. Below is the day to day activities at the Girls World Forum.
Guest Blog Post by: Eloise Golden, Girl Scout Alumna
What an exciting day for girl delegates and chaperones and volunteers and facilitators! Girls and Adults spent the day learning about the eight Millenium Development Goals (MDG’s). The United Nations created these goals with the intent to be completed by 2015. Girl Scouts and Girl Guides have joined forces with the United Nations to work on three of the eight goals. These include:
#1 – Eradicate extreme poverty and hunger
#3 – Promote gender equality and empower women
#7 – Ensure environmental sustainability
The young women attending the Forum are being asked to create a Take Action Project which deals with one of the above issues in their own communities. The girls are being given tools to do this during their sessions throughout the Forum. Girls and chaperones are requested to reflect over what they each had learned during the day to reinforce new found knowledge and begin to discuss what Take Action Projects they might work on once they return to their home.
We had a very early start today and were on the bus to Brookfield Zoo by 7:00 a.m.! The intent for today was to learn more about MDG #7 regarding environmental sustainability in partnership with the Chicago Zoological Society. Besides being a fun day at the zoo a lot of knowledge was gained about how changes in the environment are dramatically impacting animals on our planet. Because of illegal logging operations in some countries, the natural habitat for many species is being destroyed and, therefore, many of these animals are nearing distinction. Girls learned what kinds of things they can do to promote the longevity of animals, even if these species live on other continents.
The evening was free to do a little exploring in Chicago and many girls, along with chaperones, had a great desire to go check out that famous deep dish Chicago pizza!
Allison, and her two new friends from Japan!
Today was spent in sessions at the hotel. Girls and adults once again met separately. The adults learned more techniques on how to effectively support our young women when they go back to work on their Take Action projects. They were able to select from a variety of different topics so they could learn what might help the most in their country or community. For me personally, the best class I attended was a Leadership Development Class. Although I teach the Gold and Silver Award program to young women in our council, I am frequently asked by parents, leaders and project advisors, “What is my role in her project?” We certainly want and need to keep all our programs “Girl-led”, but sometimes have difficulty figuring out just how to do that. I learned some great techniques and tools for that today.
A goal for each of the delegates is to perform a Take Action Project when they return home. As a result of that, Chaperones and Delegates were asked to meet at least 30 minutes each day to discuss what each had learned and to begin formulating a Take Action Project idea. By making a specific plan for a project the delegates will be more likely to succeed.
During the evening we were able to explore the City of Chicago while doing a Scavenger Hunt! We were given a map with 8 stations to visit. At each station we received a card which explained some information about one of the Millennium Development Goals. Allison and I had a wonderful time doing the scavenger hunt; especially after we joined forces with delegates from Ireland! We sang their way through downtown Chicago singing all our favorite Girl Scout Songs! There is no doubt this will be a treasured memory!