Remember this photo for later (a before picture)
On day 1, we discovered the issues. On day 2, we connected out in the world. One day 3, we took action! We literally changed the world today, starting with some very grateful Chicago residents.
The adults started out the day with a break out session that really helped us in what we can to do to help our scouts with their take actions projects when we returned home. I found this session to be so helpful! Being the worry wart that I am, it was nice to hear other adults who had some of the same concerns I did, but it was also comforting to hear some viable solutions to our worries.
From there, we all got on buses and head out. Obviously, you can't bring 500 people to one, small project, so we were divided up into smaller groupings. My group went off with an organization called Chicago Cares to help out in a community garden. The garden we visited was very unique as far as urban gardens go. The first half of the garden was on one side of the church, and was already established as place that residents could "rent" a portion of to grow their own produce. The second half of the garden was around the other side and was an abundance garden. That garden is run by four volunteers who use it to grow produce to help those in need.
As you can see from the photos, the gardens are well established, but were in need of some good ole TLC, Girl Scout style! Sa'Haara helped out some other guides and scouts by harvesting some nice onions in a patch in the abundance garden. Madison helped out some guides and scouts by doing some work on the paths in that garden.
Ok, remember that photo I showed you? This is something really cool!
So back to that cute kid, Lucy. Her Mother is a volunteer at the abundance garden, and was the brains behind that amazing herb garden. We asked Lucy if she knew how to garden, and she said "I do, very well!" Wanting to give her something to do, I played coy and asked her if she would show me how to pull weeds, because I wasn't sure I knew how to do it the right way. Lucy played along and showed me how. Then she showed me how to slide off the dirt mountain!
We returned to that herb garden just as it was starting to rain to see the progress that had been made. Even looking around the progress Madison and Sa'Haara had made, I was stunned.
Everyone had some form of a display, and it was all amazing! I wish I got photos of all of them!
A lot of people got up and shared native songs and dances with us, which was not only fun and educational, but inspirational as well. It's amazing how we can see in the news how there are countries or distinct groups of people that hate each other, yet when you looked around at everyone (not just on International night), it was obvious that there was no hate around us. That's one of the many great things about guiding and scouting- no prejudice, no hate, pure love and acceptance (well, that's what I see).
Even looking back at the many photos I took, I am still overwhelmed at what had been accomplished by that point in the forum. Three days was all it took. Imagine what we can do with a little bit more time and help.....