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Guides Own

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Guides Own is a special ceremony for Guides. It is a tradition, an important time in Guiding.

 

  A Guides Own is not a religious ceremony or service, but an inspirational occasion where Guides of every faith and creed can participate.

  A Guides Own is based upon the beliefs and ideals of Guiding. It allows girls to express their thoughts and feelings in a truly meaningful way.

  Because it is the Guides Own ceremony, it is planned and carried out by the girls.

  It can take place at any time or date on the calendar, and is as universal as the meaning of the Promise and the Law.

 

A Guides Own should be all that its name implies!

 

  The main purpose of a Guides Own is to elaborate on a theme. Usually associated with Guiding, the theme can be related to the unit, badges the girls have worked on, or experiences they have shared.

  The ceremony can take place at a meeting, out of doors, or at any special place. After the girls have chosen a theme and place, they can plan their Guides Own.

 

Planning a Guides Own

 

  A small group is best when planning a Guides Own, usually a patrol, or (with larger groups) a representative from each patrol or unit.

  An adult is needed to help with ideas and to assist with resources.

 

Encourage the group to:

 

  Choose a theme and make a list of materials needed to express the theme in different ways.

  Decide on a time, such as sunrise, sunset, dusk and moonrise.

  Pick a site that is quiet and beautiful, for example, by a creek, in a forest grove, on a hilltop, in a city park or on a rooftop.

  List the parts of the ceremony and specify who will be responsible for each.

  Determine the order of the program, how will we open, who will direct the people to our chosen activity, what comes next, what we will sing, what we will do to close.

 

A Guides Own usually lasts 15-45 minutes.

 

  Girls need your guidance in planning their Guides Own. However, remember that the ceremony is a Guides Own, not a Leader's Own. So help the girls in developing their own ceremony, not what you think it should be.

  Make sure the girls are not rushed into planning something so quickly that they don't feel good about the outcome. Reassure them that they can do something meaningful and serious without being made fun of or having people tease them about what they feel.

  Use the following ceremonies as guideline only; don't have your girls use them word for word. Allow the girls to find their own ways of expressing the theme and their feelings. Use poems and choral readings only if these truly express the girls' feelings about the subject.

  Group participation is essential to a successful Guides Own. There is no one person in charge. Each person with a part should know where and when her part is to take place. Two, three, or even five people in unison could say some parts; the whole group could sing a song.


Expressing Oneself in a Guides Own

 

  Each Girl Guide should have the opportunity to express the theme, either in her own words or through a poem, story, quotation, or song that means something special to her.

  Theme: This is the time to share personal feelings, or to be silent as each individual thinks about a topic such as the following:

 

Achievement

Adventure

Animals

Beauty

Cheerfulness

Citizenship

Different People / Different Countries

Dreams

Duty to God or Country

Earth

Family

Freedom

Friendship

Happiness

Honor

Hope

Imagination

Joy

Kindness

Leadership

Life

Love

Loyalty

Magic

Memories

Mystery

Nature

Obedience

Opportunity

Peace

Praise

Respect

Responsibility

Service

Silence

Smile

Spirit

Success

Unity

Universe

Vision

World

Youth

 

Some Ideas for Guides Own

 

Inspirational Guides Own

A Guides Own at camp may be merely a quiet walk around the camp to enjoy the sunshine, the trees and the lovely day. Groups may pause at favorite spots - the camp lodge, the lake, the brook or beach, a campfire circle, a woodland cathedral, hillside, or camp green. Poems, songs, or thoughtful talks on a Guiding theme may be presented at each stop.

 

International Guides Own

A program of songs from other countries may be given before a display of world flags, a map of the world, or a series of "living pictures" - girls costumed according to the country represented and posing as typical family groups, craftspeople or dancers. One person speaks on Guiding and international friendship.

 

Sunrise Guides Own

In the spring and summer, particularly at camp, Guides like to gather at dawn to start the day off with an experience of seeing the sun rise. If arrangements are carefully made and the ceremony is simple, this can be a memorable event. The groups walk silently along a familiar path to a high spot previously chosen for its view to the east. If the ground is set with dew, the group remains standing. The ceremony may consist of a poem or short talk, a song, and then silence while the sun appears. If the time is exact, the group may simply walk to the spot, sing "God Has Created a New Day" just as the sun rises, and then file silently back.

 

For everything
We are truly thankful.