History of Guiding in NL

Newfoundland and Labrador’s first Guide Company was established in 1918 however it was not formally recognized until 1923 when Lady Elsie E. Allardyce, wife of the Governor, officially launched the Girl Guide movement in the Dominion by joining with the association in Great Britain. One year later eight Guide Companies, four Brownie Packs, and one Ranger Company were added. With Confederation in 1949, Girl Guides of Newfoundland joined with the Girl Guides of Canada-Guides du Canada.

In 1964, a permanent headquarters was established in St. John’s, housing the Provincial Office, Guide Shop, archives and meeting rooms. Today the office, archives and meeting rooms remain at the recently renovated headquarters however the Guide Shop is now online.

As a values-based organization, female leadership and role modelling are essential parts of Guiding. Girl Guides was designed to help young women grow into responsible citizens, the programs are geared to generate self-motivating skills and to teach specific skills needed as adults. Girl Guides of Canada-Guides du Canada, Newfoundland and Labrador Council is a voluntary organization open to all females.

Provincial Archives

Archives are responsible for maintaining and preserving our Guiding history and to ensure all future Members have the ability to learn about the efforts of our past sisters in Guiding. The Archives contains textual records, publications, program materials and photographs from 1912 to the present. We also have some uniforms and insignia and other artifacts that are relevant to the history of Guiding in Newfoundland and Labrador.

Archives purposes:

  • record and catalogue activities and events
  • preserve and store important items
  • provide historical documentation and information
  • support all historical research inquiries

On December 8, 2006, our Archives room was dedicated to Archivist Isabel Templeton for starting the collection of archival and museum materials back in 1971. Isabel has over 50 years of experience in Guiding and has served in more than a few Guiding positions over that time. For 30 years, with some help from family and friends, Isabel patiently and lovingly managed the former archives room. Thanks to her, we have an amazing collection of artifacts, scrapbooks, photo albums, uniforms, books and magazines dating back to the earliest years of Guiding in our province.

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