During her two years with Powell River Brownies, eight-year-old Londyn Waterton has done a lot more than sell cookies; although she’s excelled at that, too, according to her mother and local Brownies division leader Christina Waterton.
“She’s one of our top sellers each year,” said Christina.
Londyn has earned a badge to prove it. In fact, she has obtained all 73 of the badges possible in the two-year program for girls age seven to eight.
“She’s pretty intense,” said Christina. “She’s been in the Girl Guide organization for four years now. She was in Sparks before Brownies.”
Each age group’s program has a selection of interest badges girls can earn in topics ranging from math, science, engineering and technology to community service, art and outdoor skills training.
Londyn’s favourite accomplishment was earning a badge called artist at work, she said.
“I liked this one because I got to be with my aunt who is an artist,” said Londyn. “I made a portrait of a house with a garden and we went to one of the art museums and looked at all of the art.”
Other favourites include a badge for taking care of pets and learning how to safely cook outside, she added.
The opportunity to learn so many new skills helps empower and build confidence in young girls, said Christina.
“They have to do different tasks. She’s had to learn different ways to communicate; sign language was part of it, sending a letter, an email, it’s all different things,” added Christina. “She’s done a lot. With 73 different badges there’s a lot going on.”
The guiding program began in England in 1909 and made its way to Canada the following year. Since its beginnings more than seven million Canadian girls and women have been involved in the program. Locally, its history is almost as long and the programs are closing in on a major milestone, according to Christina.
“We’re two years off of our hundred year anniversary in Powell River.” she said. “It’s awesome.”
There are currently two Brownie groups in the community and both welcome participants as well as volunteers. Londyn said she encourages all girls to give guiding a try.
“It’s really creative,” she said. “Active girls should be in it.”
For more information on any programs or how to register, go to the national website girlguides.ca.