Tuesday, February 22, 2022

Girl Guides around the world celebrate World Thinking Day 2022 - ලෝක සිහිකිරීමේ දිනය - ලෝක බාලදක්ෂිකා ව්‍යාපාරයේ නිර්මාතෘ සැමරුම

"Our World, Our Equal Future" Sri Lanka Girl Guides Association wishes a very happy World Thinking Day to our membership and sister guides and scouts around the world!!!!

Millions of Girl Guides around the world celebrate World Thinking Day on February 22  every year. It’s because of the joint birthdays of Lord Baden Powell, the founder of the Girl Guides and Scouts Movement and the World’s Chief Guide, Olave St. Clair Soames. 
The Scouts Movement, started by Lord Baden-Powell (Lord B.P.) in 1908, unexpectedly became popular among children and teenage boys. Lord BP was encouraged by this enthusiasm and organized a rally on September 4, 1909 at Crystal Palace in England to get everyone together. Among the thousands of boys, a group of girls dressed in similar attire could be seen. 
The girls requested Lord BP to include them as well. The main objective of this group, which attracted the attention of all, was to highlight that it is acceptable to have “a similar process for girls”. The very fact that at that time, only men had the right to vote and to think of agreeing to such an idea in a male-dominated society explains Lord BP’s personality. 
Lord BP handed over his handwritten copy of the Girl Guide Law to his sister, Agnes, who, like himself, was very good at extracurricular activities and was fluent in almost 11 languages. He asked  her help in starting a new movement for Girls:  Girl Guiding 
In the midst of numerous obstacles, setbacks and protests against the empowerment of girls, Lord BP and Miss. Agnes’s unwavering commitment and later Mrs. Olave’s relentless efforts helped the Girl Guide movement to become the largest voluntary campaign for girls and young women around the world . The membership has crossed 11 million. They also set an example to girls and young women around the world by overcoming the gender barriers around them and becoming more and more empowered. The idea of commemorating that great man and women who changed the lives of tens of thousands of girls and young women was mooted at the World Conference in 1926, and Lord BP and his wife agreed to use February 22 as their joint birthday. It was also agreed by the majority that this day should be used as a day to remember and explore fellow Girl Guides and Girl Scouts around the world. The Thinking Day Fund was created in 1932 by Lady Olave St Claire Soames, the World’s Chief Guide. The fund aims to empower girls and young women around the world by allocating as much funds as possible where the need is most genuinely felt. The Thinking Day logo was introduced on World Thinking Day in 1975, which has been changing and evolving through the years. It has been active under a single theme and will continue to be celebrated with the hope of ensuring a better tomorrow for girls and young women.
This year the World Association for Girl Guides and Girl Scouts  decided to hold World Thinking Day on February 22nd, under the theme “Our World, Our Equal Future, the Environment and Gender Equality”. The Sri Lanka Girl Guides Association launched three locally tailored activity packs based on this theme. This was launched online on February 18th, 19th and 20th . We were able to successfully implement this exciting and innovative activity with over 5,000 participants from the three branches of the Sri Lanka Girl Guides Association: Little Friends, Girl Guides and Rangers participated actively to complete the challenges incorporated in the activity packs: on the 18th February the activities were based on the theme “Does Gender Limits You?”, on the 19th – “Your Voice Against Climate Change” and on the 20th – “Beat Plastic”. The members who participated in these activities shared their experiences under each theme and on the last day they collected as much waste plastic as they could and handed it over to the plastic collection centers. 

To coincide with World Thinking Day on the 22nd, we took action to celebrate World Thinking Day on the 26th of February at the National Training Centre of the Sri Lanka Girl Guides Association in Kadawatha. The Chief Commissioner Miss Sulari Jayawardena was our Chief Guest and the keynote address on Climate Change was delivered by Mr. Menaka Wijesinghe, an activist on Climate Change.
The National Celebration was organized respecting all health guidelines and saw the participation of nearly 100 Butterflies, Little friends, Guides, Senior Guides and Leaders representing all 9 provinces of the country. Another significant feature of the day was the planting of fruit saplings in the grounds around the Kadawatha National Training Center for the next generation to protect, nurture and enjoy. Furthermore, with the aim of setting an example to those who organize events locally, we created the backdrop of our Thinking Day event using discarded cement bags, old newspapers and disposable CDs and waste plastic bottles and bottle tops.
It is our responsibility to commemorate Lord Robert Stevenson Baden-Powell, Agnes Baden-Powell and Olave St. Claire Soames, who gifted the world with a valuable movement that has opened the doors for a brighter and better future for girls and women and  helped them build self-confidence, leadership qualities and skills to positively face the challenges of today’s world. The worldwide movement of Guiding will continue to further enrich these qualities in the women of today and those of the future thus upholding our aim:  to bring about positive change to create a better world strengthened by the bonds of friendship and unity, through a more empowered society where Women of the future take on a more prominent lead role.

Be Prepared

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