Beginning in the year 2010 and culminating this year – 2012 in Chicago, the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts (WAGGGS) has been celebrating the centenary of international Girl Guiding and Girl Scouting. During the three year celebration, there have been a series of Young Women’s World Forums. On July 12-16, 2012, the third and final event was held. Approximately 500 Girls from 145 countries and 100 U.S. councils, including Hannah Cox (from Pearland) and Kalpana Vaidya(from Sugar Land) from Girl Scouts of San Jacinto Council of Houston, Texas, met to address the world’s most urgent challenges. The 5-day World Forum addressed the United Nations Millennium Development Goals, specifically focusing on: MDG1: Eradicate Extreme Hunger & Poverty, MDG3: Promote Gender Equality and Empower Women, and MDG7: Ensure Environmental Sustainability.
Using their well-honed leadership skills, the girls devised systems to end poverty and hunger. They also focused on ways to empower women and promote gender equity, and tapped into their passion for environmental issues. The girls also worked to ensure environmental sustainability by spending a day at the Chicago Zoo doing volunteer work.
The 5‐day forum gave the participants the opportunity to engage with one another, attended a variety of interactive workshops and panels such as amazing sessions about global warming and the palm oil crisis, see the city of Chicago, and celebrate the Centenary of Girl Scouts of the USA and World Association of Girl Guides/Girl Scouts.