Angelique Seguin, a 14-year-old Venturer with the 77th East Glenmore Scout group in Calgary, has not only given countless hours volunteering at various community events in her Ogden neighbourhood, she once sacrificed half her tooth.
It happened while she was manning the hockey shoot at the Millican Ogden Community Association’s
(MOCA) Winter Carnival, when an errant puck missed its intended mark and got her right in the smile.
“I got a new tooth out of it,” laughs Angelique, who continues to give her time to a number of volunteer activities and events.
Kaylynn Miller, MOCA general manager, says her organization could not put on half their events without the help from Scouts such as Angelique as well as Scout leaders.
“Every time the Scouts volunteer their time for our community events, it helps achieve MOCA’s mission: to enhance neighborhood life in Millican-Ogden by providing services and programs that support and enhance community life and foster a sense of community pride and spirit through meaningful participation. The Scouts definitely participate with smiles on their faces and eagerness in their souls to better our community. We are very thankful for the close relationship we have with them and for their participation with MOCA,” says Miller.
Besides helping community organizations, Scouts such as Angelique are also finding their own volunteer opportunities in order to achieve their Top Section Awards. In Angelique’s case, she organized her troop to sew blankets to be distributed to homeless shelters through the Project Warmth Society of Alberta.
“Back in the spring I was looking for a capstone project to do for my Chief Scout’s Award and I saw as ad for Project Warmth and how they were looking for clothes, blankets and mitts for the homeless. I like crocheting, knitting and sewing, so I thought it would be good to do something along that line,” says Angelique.
All in all, Angelique and three other members from her Scouts group were able to sew 15 blankets to donate.
“I get a lot from volunteering and working as a group. It’s a very different role from being taught skills to actually doing it,” she says.
Volunteer Scout leader Patrick Gillis, with the 77th East Glenmore group, has known Angelique and her brother Guy, a fellow Venturer, for quite some time, and says both the Seguins put in 100 per cent into all they do and are a true example of youth leadership.
“You don’t have to ask them. They just go out and do it, no questions asked,” says Gillis.
While Gillis’ role is to support the youth with any volunteer opportunities, including their capstone projects, he says it is also important that they are self-directed in creating their own path.
“The Scouts’ Canadian Path program is really a youth-led program. While we help them with setting things up and facilitating projects, it really is about the youth finding what it is they want to do and then going with it. Part of the program is also the Plan Do Review, which is part of every activity. We make sure every activity is safe before they go do it, then we sit with the Scouts after to go other what they have done, what made them feel good about the activity, and what they took away from it,” says Gillis.
For more Scout stories and to see what other Scout members are doing to help their community, read: Scouts Youth Leadership Volunteers Help Clean Up Calgary Park and Highway
Looking to help your community while attaining outdoor education and youth leadership skills? To find a Scouts group near you, visit Scouts Canada’s Chinook Council in southern Alberta or Northern Lights Council in central and northern Alberta and NWT.