Thursday, August 30, 2012

Powerful Play Experience Team-building Workshop!

The new Guiding year is fast approaching and Edmonton Area Council started it off with a bang and a team building workshop. We learned about each other, had fifteen points for team success, danced, sang, made Kinex models and laughed- a lot. I had a great day!

Here is a picture of Edmonton Area council in our snazzy blue shirts made especially for the event.

The day started off with an opening involving multicoloured jelly beans, glass houses (aka clear candy containers with adorable little scoops and a story about the different branches of Guiding. I should have taken a picture of it, but the jelly beans were delicious :)

Next we talked about what we did over the summer break and how it related to the Guiding law... The Girls World Forum pretty much covers the whole thing! I really felt proud of what I accomplished this summer.

For the next activity we had fifteen points of being a good team that were scattered about the room on five different tables and we had to pick a table to sit at based on which points we thought were the most important. The points I identified with the most were overcome obstacles together, resolve differences quickly, and look out for each other. We had to create posters representing these points and then share them with the rest of the group.

This is my group's poster. I really like it and it was a lot of fun to make. We all signed it and I think it was like signing a contract saying we were going to follow these goals.

My favourite part of the day was making up a song with boomwhackers aka the best instruments ever, building a sculpture with Kinex, floam, and a giant flower, and writing action items we can do to achieve the goals for team building. Here is my team's beautiful sculpture.

We finished off the day with a good old fashioned campfire which was a lot of fun and it was definitely cool singing some of Melinda Carol's songs after singing with her this summer at GWF.
Overall it was a great day. The facilitator Robert was the most energetic and enthusiastic person I have met in a long time, it was a ton of fun, and I got to feel refreshed and ready to start the new Guiding year.

Here is the link to Powerful Play Experiences, I would highly recommend it!

Friday, August 24, 2012

Go Back to School and Help the Environment!

I got an idea for this blog post a few weeks ago and I haven't had a chance to just sit down and write it. I know school has already started in a number of places, but if you are a last minute shopper like me there is still time to make a difference in the way you shop.

While I was at the Girls' World Forum this summer we had a seminar about the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) and how they help endangered animals and regulate the forestry industry. I had seen the symbol on a number of products before, but I had never known what it meant. 

I was surprised just how many products do have the FSC approval and how affordable it can be to buy these products. There is also another organization that supports sustainable forestry called the Sustainable Forest Initiative (SFI). Between these two organizations I was overwhelmed with the number of products that are approved and they are still pretty school supplies!
While I was shopping for my own supplies I noticed that there were a few brands that have all approved products. All of Hilroy's paper products including notebooks, paper, duo tangs, and folders had either the FSC or the SFI logo on it. I have always bought these products because they are inexpensive and of good quality so the fact that they also support environmental sustainability (MDG7)  is fantastic!  
So if you haven't bought your school supplies yet- look for these two symbols when you are shopping and also look for recycled products, and things like pencils that do not use rain forest wood. Here are a couple of things I bought while I was shopping:
There is also an organization called Act Responsibly that certifies some products for both environmental sustainability and social responsibility- which I think is very cool.
Remember the environment and do your part to achieve Millennium Development Goal #7! And now a few pictures of the cute, big cats you are protecting by buying FSC approved products.


Thursday, August 23, 2012

Film Review: Miss Representation

I first heard about this film at the Girls' World Forum this summer and I was intrigued. When I got home I bought it on iTunes and I finally had a chance to watch it and I loved it! It is a documentary all about the representation of women in the media and how it has an effect on girls and women in the world, particularly in politics- which is something I am passionate about. Overall I would give this film five stars!
I would recommend everyone I know watch this film because the messages within it are not only important for girls and women, but also for boys and men because they are getting the messages about women as well. A lot of the messages that were discussed were about women being used as sexual objects, women in politics and journalism being judged not for their policies and skills in their field but by how the look, what they wear, etc.
I was also fascinated by some of the facts that were shared in the film like how when children are young and asked who would like to someday be the president of the United States an equal number of boys and girls answer yes. When the same group of people were asked as teenagers the number of girls who answer yes was much smaller than the number of boys. My mouth actually dropped open when I heard this fact: "Cuba, China, Iraq, and Afghanistan have more women in government than the United States of America" The United States in 90th in the world when it come to women in national legislatures. Pretty bad for one of the most powerful countries in the world...
I took a couple of screenshots while I was watching the film because they either inspired me or made me really mad... I take movies very seriously :)
Quotations from the film that struck me:

“If women don’t stand up for each other than no one else will” Lisa Ling- Journalist
"If women spent more time helping a sick neighbour or volunteering at a homeless shelter, focusing on how to use all of their energy to focus on solving some of the worlds problems, if they spent a tenth of the time thinking about those things that they do thinking about their weight, I mean, I think we would solve the world’s problems in a matter of months. “ Katie Couric- News Anchor

I will be having a movie night for Pathfinders and Rangers in my area to come and see this movie because I think it is very important and I hope that others will do the same.

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

Edmonton Heritage Festival!

I spent the Monday of the August long weekend at one of the most popular events in Edmonton- Heritage Days. It is my personal favourite festival because I love culture and learning about cultures from around the world. It is at events like this that I am so proud to be a Canadian because there are hundreds of different cultures and customs all living in one space and we all (for the most part) get along really well. I took my little sister in Big Brothers and Big Sisters and she loved it! Her favourite tent was the Ghana tent and she wanted to learn more about the country. I like trying the new foods and experiencing the music, dancing, and stories from around the world. It was also really cool to go to nearly every tent and be able to say that I knew someone from pretty much every display. :)
That's all for now but here is a picture of my Henna tattoo.

Until next time,