The Poway Girl Scouts learned about compassion and the price of toiletries while making nursing baskets for refugees in the area.
In 2011, Nila Boquin, the assistant captain of the army and the mother of two members, said that supporting refugees is her passion, which became a teaching opportunity for the organization, ranging from 5 to 15 years old.
"San Diego County is one of the main host communities for refugees from the Middle East in the United States. With the recent incidents in Afghanistan, our county welcomes new immigrant families from Afghanistan almost every day," Bokun said.
"I found that Scouting is a great tool for children to participate in charity work. This project creates an opportunity for girls to understand the current plight of Afghan refugees and the real obstacles they face when they arrive in our country."
After listening to the speakers of refugee resettlement work, the girls brainstormed about what items to put in the 20 baskets that have been delivered.
"After sharing stories and photos with the girls, we listed the main toiletries that every family should have-we often take these very important things for granted," Bokun said.
The basket contains toilet paper, toothbrushes, shower gel, razors, hand sanitizer and hairbrushes, as well as other hygiene products.
Boquin said that the girls used a high-quality laundry basket to store their items and wrote a welcome message in English, as well as a copy translated into Persian, which is a language used in Afghanistan.
The troops are divided into different groups by age, performing different tasks for this endeavor. Older people decorate baskets with pompoms, while middle school students write welcome messages. Fifth grade students bought most of the baskets, while kindergarten children decorated their welcome cards with stickers and ribbons.
Bokun said that the timeliness of the cause and the Santiago Army serving in Afghanistan made the project even more sad.
The force cooperated with the grassroots organization "Help El Cajon Refugees" to find family members for the basket.
Cub Scout Pack 627 in Rancho Bernardo assisted the project by donating toothbrushes and toothpaste. Girl Scout Troop 2750, also located in Rancho Bernardo, provided hand sanitizer and brushes.
Boquin also contacted a local mothers' group, hoping to donate shaving cream and razors at the last minute.
"Let the girls understand how inspiring the prices of these daily necessities are," she said.
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Angela Brandt is a contributing writer for Poway News Chieftain and Rancho Bernardo News Journal.
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