Update as of August 15, 2019: A troop has been found for this opportunity.
** Girl Scouts of Colorado is looking for a troop of Girl Scout Juniors and/or Cadettes to continue communication with the Girl Guides in Zambia. Communication will be virtual via troop leaders and may be limited due to access to technology in Zambia. If interested, please email firstname.lastname@example.org. **
64 Girl Guides in Kabwe, Zambia recently learned about their American counterparts, Girl Scouts. The Zambian girls were pleased to hear that the Colorado Girl Scouts like many of the same activities as they do, such as reading, cooking, and hanging out with friends. They also share a commitment to service and aspire to become doctors, teachers, nurses, or entrepreneurs. Unlike Colorado girls, who might enjoy skiing, Zambian girls have never seen snow in their Texas-size country, which is about as far south of the equator as Honduras is north of it.
Seanna Silver, a lifetime Girl Scout, was honored to spend time with the Kabwe Girl Guides troop (or “company” as it is called in Zambia) on July 20, 2019. Seanna traveled to Zambia to visit her mother-in-law, Martha King, who’s serving there as a Peace Corps Response Volunteer working in HIV prevention. Martha was integral in reaching out to the Kabwe troop, coordinating with the Girl Guides leader, and setting up this special meeting.
Seanna shared information with the Kabwe girls about Girl Scouts and gave each one a special Colorado Tomahawk Ranch patch. She also taught them the Girl Scout Promise & Law and how to sing “Make New Friends.” The girls caught on quickly and sang beautifully. As a music teacher, Seanna was then delighted to learn a couple of the Zambian troop’s songs.
In the spirit of “making new friends,” the girls wrote letters to send to some Colorado girls, decorating them with colorful designs. Mwenzi, who’s 13 and in 9th grade, explained that “in our country we call Girls Scouts as Girl Guides, and I am so happy to write this letter to you.” She aspires to become a doctor, “so that I can help my country.”
15-year-old Anna wrote, “Please you should come in Zambia to see me, and I should like you to teach me English.” Although Zambia’s official language is English, most Zambians start home life speaking one of 72 indigenous languages or dialects. Most only begin to learn English once they attend school, and by fourth grade, they are taught exclusively in English. Many Zambians speak at least three languages.
Also 15, Charity would like to become a doctor or police officer, “so that there can be world peace.” She especially likes the good values and morals taught in her weekly Girl Guide meetings. Her 14-year-old friend, Rosemary, a chocolate fan, wants to become a nurse or a teacher. Rosemary enjoys singing the’ “Be Prepared” song, noting that their motto, like the Girl Scouts, is to “be prepared.” Doreen would like to know how Colorado girls learn about starting and growing a business. Her favorite pastimes include swimming, dancing, cooking, and singing Gospel songs.
The girls asked about what Colorado girls like to do, are eager to hear from some of them, and hope to make new friends!
Seanna was inspired to make this connection to carry on Eleanor Silver’s legacy with the Girl Scouts of Colorado. Special thanks to John Silver, Girl Scout volunteer, who had a big idea that became a reality.