Ms. Barbara Harris


Ms. Barbara Harris, USA Trainer, visited Trinidad and Tobago in May – June 1976; here are some notes from her Trainings


Meeting at Susumachar Church Hall San Fernando – 13th May 1976


Communication – where there is a lack of communication things start deteriorating” – Barbara Harris


  • Mrs. Harris explained her experience with communication the previous day – “I was due to visit ten units at ten different venues in about four and one half hours, but because I communicated with Miss Saunders that I was able to visit ten units at the same time but at three different venues, this was done by groups getting together and interacting with each other”.


Couva Training May 20th 1976


Most of the people present were Guiders.


Tools:  Ms. Harris told the Leaders that in anything they do they need tools:


  • The Handbooks are the Leaders tools for guiding

  • Keeping records is a tool leaders use when planning any activities with their girls e.g. money spent, income and expenses, net amount

  • A plan is a tool especially when camping.  A plan enables the leader to be sure she has enough of everything for her campers e.g. there should be adequate food for all.

  • It is important when the Leader is planning a camp that she plans with her girls because some of them may have allergies or religious differences which affect food choices.

  • When taking girls to camp, the leader should be aware of how to get in touch with people in cases of emergency, e.g. nearest doctor, nearest hospital, nearest police station

  • These people should be informed in writing about your presence in the Area



Training Point Fortin 22nd May 1976


International Song and Music

When the group was asked:      What is Music?   -  Most answered that it is a pleasing sound.


The main thing that brings about these sounds are:

  • The voice – Instruments; Animals; Birds; and the Wind


The benefits of Music in the guiding Programme are:


  1. Expression           

  2. It brings outs talent

  3. Appreciation

  4. Self-confidence

  5. Co-operation

  6. Relaxation

  7. Interest

  8. Education

  9. Satisfaction

  10. Creating Atmosphere

  11. Discipline – Character Building

  12. Variety – Tolerance


Tobago Madon House 15th June 1976


Plan Ahead


Ms Harris told the group that any activities they are planning should be planned ahead and through the proper channels e.g. Guider/District Commissioner, Division Commissioner, Area Commissioner and Headquarters.  In the case of money, Project Accurate, records should be kept of income, expenses, profits or losses and a Copy submitted to Headquarters immediately upon completion of the project.


Ms. Cordner   enrolled Guiders who were never enrolled and presented Warrant Cards to Ms. Rebecca Seales, Ms. Alverna Yorke, Ms. Linda Dick, Ms. Elinore King, Ms. Jacqueline Springer and Ms. Pamela Leslie.


Meeting at Guayaguayare – 25th June 1976


Finance:     Ms. Harris told the group that ‘National’ should always be informed of any Fund Raising Programme that any area is planning to put on.  A final report after each activity should always be sent to Headquarters.  In this way the Executive Committee will be aware of fund raising activities and also aware of profits or losses to be able to give positive assistance for future planning.


Sangre Grande 2nd July 1976


Ms. Harris explained in response to the question – What is Girl Guiding ?


  • Girl Guiding is a movement where young people get together to serve the community and to help others.  Guiding is an educational movement and it helps to mold the character of young girls.


  • Guide’s Own – this is a ceremony done by Guides not in the place of a church service, but it can be used as an alternative when Guides are at camp. It can be religious in nature, but does not have to be so.


Camper’s License training, Arima July 16 1976


Ms. Harris   In summing up the performances and general activities of the week’s programme stressed the importance of deadlines and mentioned the advantages and disadvantages of meeting deadlines. She said that although participants were not aware, they were being tested, from the moment they arrived – their attitudes; ability to get along well with others; sharing with others their dedication and sense of responsibility, were always being observed. She expressed disappointment at the lack of dedication displayed and advised that as leaders they should always take the initiatives, always attend meetings to know what is going on, ask questions and follow up at all times.  Lack of information re responsibilities and haphazard arrangements were not good enough.


Ms. Harris   Explained that this was a top level training camp and the participants should have been “prepared”. Their behavior showed that they did not observe the basic rule “Be Prepared” and interpreted this to mean open indifference or defiance.  She stressed the need to follow directions to be able to pass them on to the girls in their care.