Mom Saw Chance for Muslim Girls to Expand Lives

June 2, 2008

Author: Jennifer O'Brien

Source: The London Free Press

They hike, sell cookies, do good deeds for badges and, like all Girl Guides, promise to do their best.

And most of them do it wearing hijabs.

Meet London's first Muslim Girl Guide troop, spearheaded by a Somali mom who saw and seized an opportunity to empower her girls, her way.

"We want our girls to integrate into society. We want to give them a better chance in life. I want to teach them to do things the better way," said Kamila Adan, who has three daughters in the group.

"Girl Guides teaches them so many things and it teaches them about Canada," she said. "The little ones promise to share and to be a friend, the older ones to be truthful and to be honest."

There are 13 girls in the group, which is considered a rainbow unit because it's open to girls in all levels from Sparks to Pathfinders and has been meeting at Glen Cairn Community Centre since January. The families are all newcomers to Canada, from home countries including Lebanon, Syria, the Palestinian territories, Sudan, Somalia and Kenya.