Three girls from Grand Forks went to Smithers for the annual SOAR camp. (Submitted)

Local Guides back from provincial camp

Three girls went to Smithers for SOAR 2017.

Another summer marked another Girl Guides of Canada “SOAR” (Spirit of Adventure Rendezvous) camp – a week long provincial “back to basics” camp for girls in Guiding between ages of 11 to 18. SOAR takes place throughout locations in the province every three years to give girls the chance to discover the diverse parts of British Columbia. This year’s camp took place from July 22-29 in Smithers, B.C.

Girls attend from B.C. and all over Canada, as well as other countries such as Philippines, New Zealand, the United Kingdom, the United States and Ireland.

Two Grand Forks Pathfinders and one Guide joined with a patrol from Trail, B.C. and headed to Smithers at the end of July for the week-long camp. While there, girls got to experience the opening ceremonies, greetings from dignitaries (including recognition from Prime Minister Justin Trudeau), a themed “International Night,” movie night, musical performers, Guiding adventure, and out trips into the community.

The girls also give back to the host community through community service projects such as park restoration, painting, clean up, and helping with homelessness or other community issues.

Two Guiders from Grand Forks also attended this year’s camp as volunteers. Both helped lead program activities for girls, one with a craft in making dog toys and another with a rock garden activity.

Smithers (a small community of only 5,404 people) welcomed 2,330 Guiding members with open arms. SOAR happens with much hard work and forethought by SOAR Planning Committees and volunteers, and core staff that gather from all over the province, as well as patrol leaders who take girls on their own time – time away from their families and jobs – to support our youth.

Some fun facts about this year’s SOAR Camp:

• This year’s mascot was named Felicity Fox.

• To feed so many hungry girls and Guiders, the quarter master in charge of food ordered 964 loaves of bread,1,305 two-litre milk cartons, 3,960 granola bars, and 13, 200 hot chocolate packets.

It is a tremendous opportunity that is well worth all the fundraising that it takes a single patrol to attend. This year’s girls from Grand Forks would like to mention special thanks to the Granby District Girl Guides of Canada, Roxul Social Committee, Silver Kettle Village, Cinda Clark, Elks Club, patrol leaders Erika and Naomi, parents, community members who donated bottles, Girl Guides of Canada, and SOAR staff. Thanks for a great time!