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The Postcard Exchange Effect ... Dozens of Leaders share their stories

Stories and Comments to share

6th Kenilworth Rainbows Last year was our first year. It was great to receive cards from various countries around the world and learning about the things other units do. Most of the cards were from America so I bought a map of USA and arranged the cards round the map with ribbon from the card to the town it was sent from. I'm not sure who was more excited when the cards arrived. I am hoping to take part again this year.

Wyn, England, 2nd Year

1st Currie Brownies/3rd Currie Guides We started trading several years ago - it's fascinating to find out about things like Try-Its, Bronze Award and the like which we don't have - and how in some countries they don't have Sixes/Patrols as we do, but do all their activities as a whole unit. Our girls also get envious of those who have regular access to warm sunny weather!

It's been great for them to see how others live, and that when we leaders talk about their Guiding sisters around the world - there really are girls just like them, in countries around the world, doing similar activities, perhaps at the exact same time!

Leslie, Scotland, 10th Year

1st Poringland Guides
It's getting better every year  
Yvonne, England, 4th year

Brownie - Juliette
I've had a wonderful experience doing this postcard exchange with my troop, so when my family relocated overseas, I knew that my daughter would LOVE to participate it in again!
Guinivere, Italy, 3rd Year

Junior 5264, SC USA
The girls love this! Thank you for all the hard work.  
Bonnie, South Carolina, 3rd year

Brownie Troop 22136, NH USA 
The girls and I have corresponded with many wonderful troops, and we always look forward to learning about other Scouts 
Charlene, New Hampshire, 4th year

Troop 10182 - Cadettes, FL USA  Love the Exchange. Every year the girls create a new goal and love writing what they will put in their postcards from year to year. Thank you! Sonia, Florida, 4th Year

Cadette/Senior Troop #20568 In 2009, my troop of 12 girls exchanged 136 postcards. This was our first year and we meet two sister troops that we have kept in contact with ever since. We met a troop from our home state of Ohio. They camped at our local Girl Scout Camp with us and we showed them around our little village. We earned an IP together at the Mac-A-Cheek Castle, toured the Ohio Caverns, ate lunch at the Swiss Hause, desert at the Cream & Sugar Cafe, and toured our town hall that is going through a major restoration as well as our chocolate candy factory. We had a great time and are planning another trip together this year at Mad River Mountain to go tubing!

We also traded with a troop from China. We discovered that the leader grew up in Ohio and that they couldn't get or sell cookies. We sent them a care package for thinking day that included 6 boxes of cookies, candy from our local chocolate factory, pins with the state of Ohio on them, patches and letters. We have been pen pals since. The girls get very excited when a package arrives from China!! We have met so many new friends through the postcard exchange, That is what Scouting is all about! We are looking forward to our second year of trading. already we have met a troop from Indiana that has invited us to come camp with them and earned a racing IP from the racing capital of the US. We can't wait to meet them. Enjoy your trading, the girls will remember it all their lives!
Keri, 2nd Year

Unit 13 Me encanto participar el año pasado!! espero que este año sea mejor. queremos conocer mas culturas. :D

We love to do that, the last year!!!, and we hope this are going to be most better. we want to know more cultures.
Ana, Dominican Republic

Junior Troop 723 2008 was our 1st year, we, like most troops were amazed how many cards we received. The girls took part in reading each card and finding the state on a USA map we used and put stickers representing we received that state. We look forward to doing this for years to come, SOO PLEASE don't stop!

Cadette Troop 50082 This exchange is great on the contacts you make. Last year, we traded with a troop that went to Yellowstone National park (our big trip for 2010). They told us about a Girl Scout house near the park. That made our trip fund raising 2 years shorter. I started with my daughter's troop back in the beginning, now my current troop and maybe my granddaughter's troop (daisies) the girls are all so amazed that the scouts/guides are just like them.
Dee, South Dakota

1st Adlington Rainbows ...  Last year was my very first time of trading and I was immediately addicted to it and made many friends and even exchanged ideas and badges with some groups. This year as well as Rainbows, I am planning an evening with my Brownie group at my home to let them see how this originated and what is involved from start to finish.

Last year I made my own postcards as Adlington did not have their own, so this year I am about to do the same. I am very excited about doing this again and have now decided to have a new e-mail address just for trading as last year my husband could not believe how may e-mails kept coming!!  Keep up the good work everyone, especially Jan and the other moderators who do a splendid job. Many thanks to you all.
Christine, Lancashire, England
, 2nd year

17th Cheltenham (Bethesda) Brownies ... Last year was our first year and the Guides were really excited. We agreed what went on the postcard as a unit and took turns addressing them. Once the postcards started arriving the girls got excited guessing where they were from in the world, finding out about the other units from the postcards and then finding them on our map. We displayed the postcards using string and pins and a world map on our display board to show how wide and varied the sisterhood of Guiding is.

This year we hope to produce our own postcards and to correspond with a greater variety of countries.
Liz, Gloucestershire, England, 2nd year

3rd Tunbridge Wells (St Mark's) Brownies ... We thoroughly enjoyed taking part last year for the 1st time, and getting cards from all around the world.

As a result of participating in the exchange, when I mentioned to the girls in my Unit, where we were getting postcards from, like from Kazakhstan, the newest Brownie in the Unit exclaimed, "That's where I was born!" I have to admit, that had it not been for the Postcard Exchange, I would never have known this about our newest Brownie. In addition, hearing about the 'service projects' undertaken by different Troops, have given us ideas for our future 'community action' projects. Thanks Postcard Exchange! Patricia, Kent, England, 2nd year

3rd Bracebridge Sparks This is one of the best activities I've had the pleasure of participating in during my 10+ years as a Leader!! I've made some really interesting friends who I would love to be able to meet someday!!.
Sue, Ontario, 7th Year

SA Post Box Secretary for Girl Guides I would like to thank everyone involved for a wonderful exchange. It was the first time that I have participated and it was so nice to open links to countries that it is very hard to hear from. Being the Post Box Secretary it is very important to keep the doors wide open to promote our country. 
Carole, South Africa, 1st Year

73rd Doncaster Rainbows  [Last year] was our first time. My girls and I found the exchange fun and exciting especially from around the world. Our 'Thinking Day' country was Canada - they were very helpful and sent me information regarding 'sparks'. Looking forward to starting early and saving very hard.
Gweneth, UK, 2nd Year

22nd Northampton (St. Mary's) Brownies & 23rd Northampton (St. Mary's) Rainbows   We just wanted to say 'a BIG Thank You' to you all for all your hard work in the Postcard Exchange and for enabling so many troops and units to make contact with each other around the world. The girls have thoroughly enjoyed their first experience of the Postcard Exchange - in their words "it's brilliant!".
Andrea, UK, 2nd Year

3rd Tunbridge Wells (St Mark's) Brownies  It's been absolutely GREAT! I've had a couple surprises along the way, e.g. when receiving the address for one Brownie Troop in Denver, Colorado, the Troop Leader, lives not to far away from where I use to live in Denver. In addition, the Leader, for a Troop in California, works with a friend of mine, from when I lived in Denver, who is now living and working in California.
Patricia, UK, 1st Year

University of Bahrain Rovers  I've participated before in TD Postcard Exchange and this is my second year, its really a good activity and helps the guides and scouts around the world to bond and share and know about different cultures.
Shaima, Bahrain, 2nd Year

Nautilus Rangers Jolene (Oribi Brownies) suggested via our SA Guider Magazine that our units may be interested in this exchange. My girls registered and before long had a pile of interesting postcards from across the world. We have also used this exchange to let everyone know that we are hosting the 33rd World Conference in South Africa next year and would love to meet some of our new friends at the international camp. 
Elaine, Benoni, South Africa

26 Explorer Scouts Troop 'Metamorphosis'  Well, it's quite strange story. Our troop exists since April 2007 (before, we were a unit in 26th Girl Scouts Troop 'Morpho') and at the beginning of this scout year, our troop leader Ewelina gave us a task, that we have to get a postcard from one continent. It wasn't easy because first we didn't know where to look for contacts.  Later we were founding the same addresses in the Internet, especially from UK and United States. About week ago, I went on this webpage and I showed it to my troop. Girls were really excited, and we all decided: "Let's do it!". We exchanged a few mails, and now the only subject to talk about in 'Metamorphosis' is our postcards experience. Personally, I'm checking my mailbox every day and I'm waiting for a postcard from another country :)
Agnieszka, Poland, 1st year

Daisy Troop 438  Being a Daisy Troop Leader I am always looking for exciting ways to get girls excited about scouting. This has turned out to be such a great way! I start the year off with each troop planning a "letter" to put on the cards, and we put them together as a troop. The girls LOVE IT!

Brownie Troop 435 This is our second year participating in the exchange. This is a great way for the girls to learn about other troops and other places. The program allows the girls to experience first hand that they are a part of a world wide organization. It also allows them the opportunity to express their pride in who they are and where the come from. Being from Sunny South Florida, the girls enjoy finding postcards that show off our sunny beaches and fun that makes their home a vacationer paradise. We are really looking forward to exchanging this year!  
Vania, FL, 2nd year

Cadette Troop 384  Our troop participated in this when they were Brownies (6, 7, 8 years old) and I still have our Thinking Day postcards in a binder. Now that the girls are older, I know they would love to participate in this again and take more ownership of it. What a great way to keep older girls interested and involved in the global scouting movement!!
Tracy, CA, 2nd Year

Cadettes  My group of girls love doing this and getting ideas from all over the world!!
Christina, IN, 5th Year

Senior 236  This is our last year together and we want to hear from everyone.
Alison, WA, 9th Year

223rd Mississauga Guides' Story... Wow, it was a lot of work. We not only exchanged cards with over 100 units all over the world, but I got really close to some of them.

After exchanging initial addresses, some of them asked for ideas for an Indian theme evening for thinking day in their units/districts. I sent them games, songs, etc. worked out perfectly.

One night, as I was trying to catch up with my emails, one of the leaders from a city on the western coast of U.S. replied back. So we started an exchange of emails and I asked her what she was doing up so early? and she replied back - she had watched a scary movie and could not sleep........I had a good laugh !! Another day when I replied to someone in Ireland, she said she would like to go to Sangam one day.  So, I told her I had just been in Jan 2007 and she said some girls from her unit were there as well. After a few emails, we realized that, I had met them and even taken pics with them. And traded patches with them as well.

Finally, just before the close of the site, a group in Puerto Rico wrote to me and I sent them a huge package of supplies -flyers, keepsakes, badges, etc. They were having an international theme for thinking day and their unit was to do Canada. I had to courier them the stuff, which cost me quite a packet, but it was worth it !!

I have several units in India, Egypt, Singapore who would love to join this year. I am going to ask them to join up. Thanks to another enterprising leader, we ordered a very nice way to display our postcards. They were put out at our Hospitality Room at the Western Hemisphere Conference in Mississauga, ON, in July 2007 !! Looking forward to this year's exchange.
Armaity, Ontario, Canada

1st Parkhill Girl Guides I love this exchange, it is exciting for all the girls and leaders and you develop friendships around the world. 
, Ontario, 3rd year

17th Cornwall Guides This is our 5th year and we are looking forward to continue learning about different Countries and sharing Thinking Day with everyone! 
, Ontario, 5th year!

Troop 1964's Story... 2007 was our first year participating in the postcard exchange. I had no idea what we were getting into or how much fun it would be and how addicting it would become! The most special thing from everything related to the Postcard Exchange was the personal contacts we made with other troops and guide units from all over the world.

Our country was Egypt for 2007 and I kept hoping to see a Guide Unit from Egypt registered and never found anyone to trade a postcard with. But at the end of the season when the "MAD" open emails started I thought I would put a request out there stating my need and asked if anyone had a trade or contact information for a Guiding Unit in Egypt. I honestly did not expect an answer but figured I had nothing to lose.

To my SURPRISE!!! I received a quick response from someone in New Zealand that offered an email for an Egyptian Guiding Leader that she had met in an online jamboree the year prior. Just to receive a response from New Zealand was too cool!! and it made me really feel the "Worldwide Sisterhood" we teach our girls.

I emailed the Egyptian Guide, again not expecting to hear from them, and again to my SURPRISE I received a fast response. I had a personal Guiding Unit in Egypt to connect with and share Girl Scout and Girl guide information with via New Zealand, via the Postcard Exchange.

My new friend and I shared information on Guiding, fundraising and events our girls attend. They even sent me the most beautiful photos of their unit doing recent activities, and wearing their Guiding uniforms. I printed these pictures and had them on display at our Thinking Day event.

I cannot explain the real feeling of Worldwide Sisterhood my troop and I personally felt because of this connection. It is all due to this wonderful postcard Exchange and I can honestly say that although I always taught my girls about our Worldwide Sisterhood, I can now say it is true and really feel it in my heart! Thank you! Happy trading in 2009.
Cathy, Kentucky

Troop 2356 & 2309's Story My daughter's school thought this was such a great idea, that the librarian had one grade trade postcards with family members living in other states. They set up a map of the USA and added the postcards from all over as they came in. It was awesome, and the kids learned about different states.   Jeanine

Junior Troop 422  I think this is our 9th year of participation. We are excited to be participating again!
Merry, Louisiana, 9th year

Troop 1066  Thank you so much for all your hard work. We look forward to this every year and very much appreciate all you do to keep this active and successful!
, Illinois, 4th year

Bear Den 6  I participated twice with my Girl Scout troop several years ago and had lots of fun doing it. Thought I would try it with my Cub Scouts.
, Tennessee

Troop 2214's Story... Our Troop joined the Exchange in 2006. We were in our second year of Brownies that year. At first we sought out a few exchanges on our own from States or Countries where we had relatives or friends. Requests were coming in so fast from other Troops though, that we just replied to those and agreed to lots of exchanges up to our budgeted amount for postcards and postage.

What a wonderful experience. The girls loved reading all the postcards every week. They became thrilled when they found out the other girls across the country enjoyed doing the same things as them. I think what really got them excited though, was when they came across a Troop with a girl that had the same name as one of them. (Oh, the simple joys of second graders!!)

For Thinking Day, we attended a celebration with other Troops in our Service Unit. We made a huge display of all of the postcards we received and shared them with the other Troops. What fun!

Last year, our Troop was a little busy working on a major service project providing school supplies and clothing to children in Afghanistan, so the girls opted not to participate. But as an avid Girl Scout and postcard collector myself, I just had to participate on my own. It took me no time at all to agree to each and every request I received, up to my budgeted 40 postcards that is, and pop them all in the mail.

I'm looking forward to participating again in 2009. I thank Jan McKinney and all of the volunteer moderators for their time, their enthusiasm and their spirit!!   
Deb, Maryland

Junior Troop 2412  The girls love to do this. We hang all of the postcards in the window at our school and all the kids at school love to look at all of the places that the girls have gotten postcards from.
Pam, Michigan, 3rd year

Senior Troop 2171's Story... We started participating in the Postcard Exchange back in 2000. We collected all 50 states and placed the cards in a photo album. The girls loved to read each postcard as they came in. Then for the next 4 years, we had the girls pick a USA state or country they wanted to study and exchange a postcard with.

On February 22, we gathered together and I gave each of the girls their postcards to read and share. As early as June, we wrote letters to various companies. We asked for donations for postcards from local stores, tourist bureaus and received over 200 postcards. We always exchanged with anyone who needed a New York postcard - we never said no to help them out.  Then the past 2 years we concentrated on only 1 country, exchanged 1-2 postcards from there, studied that country’s culture, and looked into their Girl Guide community. We even completed a Girl Guide badge from that country.

We continue to still say yes to whom ever needs a card from New York to finish their collection. Jan, Thank you for starting this exchange and for all the work you put into this group! It is very much appreciated! : )   
Christine, NewYork

Oribi Brownies (South Africa Just thought I'd let you know that the postcard exchange goes beyond postcards.

In 2005 I exchanged postcards with a Brownie Pack in the UK. Later on in the year I got an e-mail that the Guider would be coming to SA and maybe we could meet. Well, this weekend it finally became a reality and her and 2 other Guiders spent the weekend at my house. It was so great to meet someone from across the world and that we have something in common. They met some of my Brownies and the Brownies cannot wait to do the postcard exchange as they say maybe they will meet someone we sent a postcard to again.
Jolene, South Africa

2nd Kings Worthy Brownies  We are a Brownie pack in Kings Worthy, a small village just outside of Winchester, Hampshire, England and this is our 2nd year participating and are hoping to trade with as many units as possible. We love to hear about Guiding in different parts of the world. 
, England

Troop 736's Story...  This being our first year in the exchange, we did not know what to expect. The first card came and we were excited. There were days we received 6 cards in one day! Some days we received none. Our Letter Carrier knew we were looking for the postcards and he became excited for us. What a wonderful experience learning about Scouts from around the country and world. Thank you to Jan McKinney for starting this wonderful project.  
Danielle, NewYork

Troop 395's Story...  This was the troop's first year participating in the exchange and we had a blast learning about the different activities other troop's around the US and the world participate in. Reading the postcards became the highlight of our weekly meetings. The scouts are all looking forward to participating in the exchange again this year. We 'd like to add a big thanks to Jan and all of the moderators for your hard work and dedication to this wonderful project.  
Carol, Nevada

Troop 291's Story... Thanks so much for organizing the exchange again this year. We enjoy each and every postcard we get, no matter where it is from. My daughter, now 17, has also learned a lot about using the computer by participating in the exchange the past 3 years. She is doing almost all of the work this year arranging the trades and is learning how to be organized with different folders, etc. Thanks for providing the opportunity for her to grow and learn.  
Diane, Colorado

Junior Troop #398's Story...  Last year was our first year participating in the exchange, and we are back this year! The neat thing about it is that not only did our Troop benefit from the experience, but our entire elementary school enjoyed it (some 800 children!) Our school was kind enough to let us set up a display on a bulletin board in the main hall.

We posted world and U.S. maps, a short blurb explaining what Thinking Day was, and then as our postcards arrived, we mounted them around the maps (thinking that the maps would be helpful for the children to see where the cards came from). I can't tell you how many times children, teachers, parents, and even the custodian stopped to look at the new cards and find the locations on the map. When it came time to take the display down at the end of the year, our school secretary asked us if we were going to participate in the exchange again this year...we said yes of course and decided to leave the display up instead and simply add the new postcards we receive this year to it!

Many of the children in our school have never traveled outside of our area, so it is great to be able to expose them to a little bit of everywhere by participating in the exchange!  
Shay H, Junior Troop 398

Troop #406's Story...  The girls were truly awed by this experience.  They learned what  a Juliette is, what other troops are doing and most importantly, their towns/state/country are not the only Scouts/Guides out there.  That meeting, when we went over all our cards, the girls just sat quietly and listened as I read each story.  They really were funny when they saw some of the pictures, "They look like us!!"  "Don't I know her??" "Alaska has summer?" "Chickens as pets?".  Their questions didn't stop.  It was a super hit, and we made T-shirts for our Service Unit International Day Event with a little stamp with the state/country they were from all around a group of Brownies circling a globe.

This is so enlightening, even my older daughter's troop enjoyed our cards.  My older daughter (2nd YR JR) even looked up in WAGGS for her Social Studies project as to how many GS/Guides were in Equatorial Guinea in Western Africa.

We can't wait to exchange this year and keep it as a treasured part of my GS Troop Leadership years.
Loretta H, Brownie Troop 406

Troop 397's Story... Helping Katrina Victims...  The Postcard Exchange is certainly more that just the exchange of cards because it allows us to have a powerful network within Scouts.

I want to share a story with you that grew out of the postcard exchange.

In 2005 we exchanged postcards with 2 troops from LA and one from MS among others. The following fall the girls in my troop wanted to work on their Bronze award to help scouts that were impacted by Katrina. I looked back through the e-mails for the troops we exchanged with that year and sent out e-mails to the troops for the states that were impacted. We wanted to let them know what we were doing and see if they could network us to the right people to talk to in order to help out.

One of the troops we e-mailed was actually from St Bernard Parrish, LA which was one of the hardest hit areas. Many, if not all, of the girls in the troop had lost their homes since we had exchanged cards with them. The troop leader was one of the ones that lost her home as well and she e-mailed me back to let me know that actually they could use the help.

We did a drive to collect things for their service unit and my troop made boxes of hand made and other personal items to give to each of the girls in the troop. Our efforts are ongoing and there is certainly still a lot of need to help those impacted by the storm. I was just so thankful though that we actually were able to link with these folks and help out in some way because of the postcard exchange that you work so hard to maintain. It is certainly more than just the exchange of cards because it allows us to have a powerful network within Scouts. Thanks for your help in making this possible.
Patti B, Junior Troop #397

Unit 183
We have a lot of fun and good experience with this activity...the girls learn a lot and meet new friends...we hope this year have more the opportunity to meet more troops than the last time...God Bless Everyone.  
Edia, Puerto Rico, 2nd year

 Saints Scouts
I'll encourage as many of my Scouts to participate in this global Post Card Exchange. I think I will make it an annual event on our Programme Calender.
Gary, Guyana

1st Alexandra Park Brownie Pack
This is the first year we took part. The Brownies thought it was brilliant and the parent were fascinated about the other units around the world. We found it an excellent way to complete our World Guiding Badge and the girls all want to take part again next year.  
Jo, London, 1st year

Brownie Troop 1128 
We had a great year with the exchange. It was very exciting waiting for each meeting to see if we had Girl Scout mail. My troop is mostly third graders. We enjoyed seeing the different stamps and seeing if anyone had the same name as girls in our troop.  
Kelly, Kentucky, 2nd year

1st & 2nd Horlrey Scouts  
It was great. The Scouts were overjoyed to receive cards - and they learaned a lot in the process. Iin August we are camping in Switz.with some Turkish Scouts with whome we made contact through the PCExchange. It's a wonderful concept - Thanks!!!  
Judith, England, 2nd year

73rd Doncaster Rainbows January 08 was my first time. My girls and I found the exchange fun and exciting especially from around the world. My 'Thinking Day' country was Canada - they were very helpful and sent me information regarding 'sparks'. Looking forward to starting early and saving very hard. 
, England, 2nd year

B/J/C Troop 394 We are a small troop from NC. My Cadettes have participated in this event since the beginning. This is our (Brownies and Juniors) third year in trading postcards. Every year keeps getting better and better!
, North Carolina, multiple years

1st Tullibody & Cambus Brownies    The Girls got such a buzz last year we just had to come back and do it all again.
Ann-Margaret, Scotland, 2nd Year

Troop 13023   I participated with my other troop about 4 years ago, and very excited to start with this troop now. Julia, MN, 1st Year

Junior & Cadette 2270  Can't wait for the New year of exchanging to start!
Kim, NH, 2nd

Daisy 75/Junior 142/Cadette 633  Great to see the site open for the 2009 Postcard Exchange. We are looking forward to our 2nd year participating. Wendy, FL, 2nd Year

Junior 3035  I love this exchange. I can't wait to start exchanging post cards again this year! Vickie, MD, 2nd Year

Junior 70445  Last year was our first year-everyone was so helpful and friendly. We can't wait to do it again! Kelly, CA, 2nd Year

Cadette 1926  The girls had a great time sending and receiving the postcards and then sharing them with girls from other troops. Dawn, MI, 2nd Year

Junior 10602  We are a junior troop 2nd year, the girls are really excited about this years exchange. We are really EXCITED!!!! Kimberly, CA, 2nd Year

Troop 50178  We are so happy to do this again. Our girls loved it! Julie, CT, 2nd Year

Brownie 5500  We did this last year and the girls loved it and would like to do it again. We have last years book at the county office where our troop is for everyone to see. Suzetta, VA, 2nd Year

Brownie 1769  We had a great time doing this last year. The girls loved receiving postcards from around the world. We look forward to meeting new scouts this year. Alana, NY, 2nd Year

Brownie 864  We look forward to another year of trading!! Becky, FL, 2nd Year

Brownies 856  We are really excited about participating again this year. I am hoping to enrich my girl scouts Thinking Day experience with many exchanges from all over the world Deborah, VA, 3rd Year

Junior 88  We're so excited to meet new troops this year! Cathleen, OR, 3rd Year

Junior 3757  Hurray!!!! Linda, MO, 4th Year

Junior 281  This will be our fourth year in the exchange. We've always had fun meeting our sister scout/guides! Lorna, AR, 4th Year

Renmark Unit   This will be the 4th year we have participated and the girls made a display in our hall using maps from Google so they could see where the postcards had come from this year we hope to add to this until we have received them from all USA states, as well as other countries.   Bronwyn, Australia

Troops 338 and 118 Now I know what to expect and plan to be more organized!! Teresa, Oregon, 2nd year

Junior Troop 603  We really enjoyed it last year and can't wait for this years. Rhonda, Pennsylvania, 2nd year

Junior Troop 231  The girls had such fun last year, and asked about getting one from all states. They are trying this year to get only states we have not received yet. 
, Connecticut, 2nd year

Troop 2302  Thank you for all your hard work! We really have fun. 
, Pennsylvania, 5th year!

3rd Bracebridge Sparks  It's been 4+ years and confirmed by our scrapbook the actual number is 6 years. Just last year was the first year we exchanged crests for postcard crests! The kids were ecstatic! Thanks for the great challenge!  Sue, Ontario

Brownie Troop 495  This is a wonderful international & national project for the girls! They love reading & displaying their postcards or e-cards. Thank you for providing this!!! Terry, Illinois, 4th year

Junior Troop 104  We participated a few years ago and our troop had a blast. We are looking forward to having just as much fun again this year. Michaela, Georgia, 2nd year

Junior Troop 849  My girls have really enjoyed reading all the postcards from other girls. It is neat to see that these girls enjoy the same things that they do. Carol, Tennessee, 3rd year

Troop 1376  We really like to get mail from all over the world. We just started our year back up and girls want to know where they will write and what kinds of things other girls their age are doing this year. Thank you to all involved in making this project possible. Heather, Tennessee, 4th year

1st Ladysmith Sparks  This was so much fun last year and very addicting! Thanks for organizing this again!  Morgan, British Columbia

Unit 7  It's great to participate in this exchange, and get to know a lot o guides/scouts from all over the world. 
, Guatemala

60th Birmingham Guides  Had a great response last year. Looking forward to hearing from everyone again.  Debbie, England

Troop 31  We had so much fun last year! My girls asked me to sign up again, as soon as we started recieving our cards. Thank you so much for giving us a place to learn so much.  Kimberly, Pennsylvania

USAGSO Paris Troop 2  We participated for the first time last year and loved learning what other troops do!  Mary Ellen, France

Risca   Excellent response last year and great activity for girls - taught them some geography too! 
Ros, Wales

1st Portland Sparks  Last year was our first year. We had eight Sparks who loved to receive the postcards from other countries. The girls were so surprised when they were asked to choose a couple to take home and save in their personal Guiding mementos. The girls asked last week if we are doing it again. I said of course.  Cindy, Canada

Last year was our first year to exchange cards and we exchanged about 150 cards!! The girls were very excited to hear at our meetings about what other girl scouts/guides are doing and can't wait to do it again !! This year we will be our first year as Cadette Scouts and the girls will be helping me with the exchange so that we may double the cards exchanged YEAH!! 
Janie, Cadette Troop 35, Texas

Very much looking forward to the postcard exchange, especially as I have just returned from South Africa after meeting the Oribi brownies who I exchanged postcards with previously.
Lora, Multiple Units, UK

Thank you and Congratulations on 10 years! Amelia, Senior Troop 433, NY, 4th year participant

We had so much fun last year and created a great display in our hall, that we are keen to do it again.
Deborah, Black Rock Guide, Australia

This will be our 6th year of taking part, it is a fantastic way to show rainbows how BIG guiding is.
Verna, 2nd Godmanchester Rainbows, UK

We have participated for many years and love exchanging cards and badges/patches and learning all about our fellow Guides/Scouts all over the world.
Kirsteen, 2nd Selkirk Brownies, UK

The Post Card Exchange is a great idea. Please keep it alive. This year I also have the Boy Scouts
participating and they are so excited to know about their brothers around the world.
Judith, MOI PRIMARY, Kenya

This is our second year and we are very excited to participate again. We learned so much about troops
and scouts in other parts of the US.
Connie, Brownie 520, NY, USA

The girls had a blast with this last year. I think it made Thinking Day more real to them. They really
enjoyed hearing about what other troops were doing and the places that they live.
Pam, Junior Troop 2412, MI, USA

Can't wait to get started ~ again!!
Becky, Junior Troop 174, WI, USA

This is a great project. 2007 will be our 4th year. The girls really enjoy it.
Kathleen, Juniors 647, TX, USA

We are first year juniors, We have participated in this exchange since we were daisy's. The girls really
enjoy this!
Diane, Junior Troop 7963, OH, USA

We had a great time participating last year. The display we did for our Thinking Day Event was
a big hit, too. I'm looking forward to "meeting" more Leaders and Troops again this year. Jan, thanks so much for all your hard work!! You bring a lot of joy to a lot of Scouts and help us all really celebrate Thinking Day.

Harriet, Junior Troop 439, PA, USA

This is our troop's second year participating. This was definitely one of the highlights of our year. It was so much fun!
Michelle, Junior Troop #3608, CA, US

Love it! The girls enjoy getting the cards and reading about scouts from other troops and places. I love getting new ideas about what we can do as a troop.
Betsey, Troop 131, VA, USA

Last year was our first year actively participating. We had a great time. We collected over 50 cards, made a display to share and learned a great deal about other scouts' interests and activities.
Carol, Cadette Troop 408, CA, USA

I love this program! Thank you so much, Jan, for keeping it going ...
Melissa, Cadette 603, KY, USA

We are so excited to start our 2nd year in this AWESOME program ... we had such a blast last year and are really looking forward to this year.
Karen, Brownie Troop #655, NY, USA

This is the most interesting international educational experience I have been involved in while Guiding girls. Helen, 2nd East Tamworth Guides, Australia, 3rd year participant

East End Brownies  I have done this with my Guide unit and am looking forward to doing this with a Brownie unit!  Denise, Bermuda

The History of the Thinking Day Postcard Exchange ...

It's wonderful to see how a small idea can turn into such a large project that means so much to so many people..

Jan's Story ... It all started in 1998 when I decided to help my Cadettes understand that Scouting went way beyond their city limits.  I posted a message on an eGroup explaining that I wanted my girls to see just how wide spread we were and to learn about Scouts and Guides in other areas.  I asked anyone that wanted to exchange a postcard with me to send me their information.  Well, that year I got about 255 requests which included about 3 other countries.    It was such a success and everyone really loved it so I did it again the next year, and the rest is history. 

For the 2007 Exchange we invited the Cub Scouts and Boy Scouts to participate, making the exchange larger and even more diverse.

In August of each year I start by emailing everyone who has ever participated and ask them if they want to join again.  I then proceed to surf the net looking for troop and unit websites and ask them to join.  And of course, there is word of mouth.

Each year I create a new patch to represent the exchange.  Hopefully, we will continue for many years to come.
Thanks for your interest,
Jan McKinney

If you have any questions or would like to send me a story from your Postcard Exchange Experience, please email me or your state's moderator at the Contact Page


Name: *
Troop / Unit: *
E-Mail: *
Story or Experience:


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