OTTAWA, March 30, 2016 /CNW/ - Potential good deeds are all around us just waiting to happen! Scouts Canada is challenging all Canadians to do a Good Turn as part of a national movement to spread and goodwill during the 7th annual Good Turn Week, April 22 – May 1, 2016. To help bring Good Turn Week to local communities, Scouts Canada is launching 34 major community Good Turn projects (more than double the number in 2015), made possible with the generous support of RBC Foundation. On April 22, Scouts will literally be carrying the load to kick off Good Turn Week in four cities – Regina, Toronto, Ottawa and Halifax – as youth collect and portage non-perishable goods and essential care items in canoes across their cities to food banks and homeless shelters. To learn how to help support their efforts, visit scouts.ca/goodturnweek.
Good Turns are scientifically proven to have a host of benefits. In addition to making both the doer and recipient feel good, studies show that performing Good Turns helps those suffering from social anxiety to mingle more easily and has a positive impact on risk factors for cardiac disease. Plus good deeds can also inspire others to perform their own good turn and it takes only one to spark a cycle of kindness.
"In our busy day-to-day lives, it can be easy to ignore someone in need – especially when we are so absorbed in technology that we lose our sense of community that comes with face-to-face interaction," says Caitlyn Piton, National Youth Commissioner and Chair of the National Youth Network for Scouts Canada. "That's why we're challenging everyone to look up from their screens, and find someone in need. With every Good Turn, big or small, we have the chance to reconnect with those around us, inspire others to do the same and lay the foundation for stronger, friendlier and healthier communities."
Canadians can share their Good Turns at Scouts.ca/goodturnweek, or on social media by using #GoodTurnWeek and tagging @ScoutsCanada. The gesture can be as easy as giving up your seat on the bus or as ambitious as organizing the cleanup of a local park.
Here are featured Good Turn Week projects:
Chilliwack, BC: More than 100 members of the 6th Chilliwack Scouts are holding a community cleanup of the Tamihi Creek, making the space safer and more enjoyable for the community to use.
Maple Ridge, BC and Squamish, BC: The 1st Haney Beaver Scouts and the 4th Squamish Scouts are enhancing the gardens at the Ridge Meadows Hospital Rehab Center in Maple Ridge and Hiltop House residential care facility in Squamish, to create welcoming spaces for the organizations' patients and residents to enjoy.
Surrey, BC: Scouts from the Green Timbers Area are collecting emergency blankets and tarps and distributing them to homeless youth to help prevent water damage to their belongings from the area's frequent rain.
Vancouver, BC: The 9th St. Thomas Scouts are launching the Umbrella Share Project. The youth will hand out 50 umbrellas at unsheltered bus stops and train stations on a rainy day. The umbrellas are not meant to be kept after use, but passed along to others in need.
Vancouver, BC: The 180th Pacific Coast Rover Scouts will prepare meals to feed 500 people in need in East Vancouver.
Vancouver, BC: More than 30 members of the 23rd Elsie Roy Cub Scouts are creating care packages to distribute to homeless individuals in the city.
Vancouver, BC: Venturer and Rover Scouts from across lower mainland BC are hosting a #cansforcoffee event at the Real Canadian Superstore's Grandview Highway location, giving away free coffee, tea and hot chocolate in exchange for a donation of a non-perishable food item for the Lower Mainland Food Banks.
Calgary, AB: The 6th Calgary Scouts are building personalized decorative corkboards for kids moving into new Habitat for Humanity homes to help provide the children with a sense of belonging in their new bedrooms.
Calgary, AB and Windsor, ON: The 215th Strathcona Scouts and the 89th Windsor Scouts are launching community cleanups of several areas in Strathcoma and in Windsor.
St. Albert, AB: The 12th St. Albert Scouts are holding a community food drive to collect a trailer full of non-perishable food items to donate to the St. Albert Food Bank.
North Battleford, SK: The 2nd North Battleford Scouts are launching the Yellow Fish Road Project in the city to generate awareness of pollutants entering local water bodies through storm drains.
Winnipeg, MB: Scouts from across Winnipeg are collecting donations of towels, blankets, toys, dog food and other pet supplies for Hull's Haven Border Collie Rescue. The Scouts are also building feeding platforms, making handmade dog beds and creating homemade treats for the rescue dogs awaiting new homes.
Cobden, ON: The 1st Cobden Cub Scouts are hosting a full day of Good Turn activities at Shaw Woods, where they'll do a park cleanup, donate GPS devices for the geocaching program as well as create additional caches, and teach youth who are on the wait list for Big Brothers how to geocache.
Cochrane, ON: The 1st Cochrane Scouts are building three buddy benches, one for each of the elementary schools in town. Buddy benches, are designed to foster inclusion in the schoolyard, helping kids make new friendships to eliminate feelings of loneliness.
Eganville, ON: The 1st Eganville Scouts are building a new scoreboard for the local soccer field, Legion Field.
Guelph, ON: The Guelph Police Venturer Scouts are creating care packages – including personal hygiene items, sleeping bags, tents, and items of clothing – to be distributed to the homeless through Guelph Community Housing's Warm Connections program.
Kitchener, ON and Merrickville, ON: The 45th Kitchener Scouts and the 1st Merrickville Scouts are planting flowers, trees and shrubs favoured by birds and butterflies, promoting conservation and attracting the species to the Kitchener's Huron Natural Area and a new community garden the youth are creating in Merrickville.
Peterborough, ON: The 15th Peterborough Scouts will give the temporary housing for Syrian refugees moving to the city a needed facelift to create a more welcoming environment.
Peterborough, ON: The 33rd Rover Scouts are hosting a fun activity day for youth serviced by Big Brothers Big Sisters at Langley Scout Reserve, a local Scout campground.
Russell, ON: The 2nd Russell Scouts aim to collect one tonne of non-perishable food for the Embrun Food Bank.
St. Catharines, ON: The 57th St. Catharines Scouts are hosting a traditional Scout Camp for youth with physical and/or cognitive disabilities, providing a day of fun outdoor activities, campfire skits, songs and treats.
Toronto, ON: The 14th Willowdale Beavers are creating 100 personal care packages for Cummer Avenue United Church's Drop Inn program for homeless Torontonians.
Toronto, ON: Toronto Scouts are holding a diversity event for kids across the city, teaching them about different religions to foster greater knowledge and acceptance of different cultural backgrounds in Toronto.
Welland, ON: The 20th Welland Venturer and Rover Scouts are building 30 Dakar Racer pedal carts and donating them to the Niagara Children's safety village to replace old carts and to help children learn about bike safety.
Kingston, NS and Conception Bay, NF: The 1st Kingston Cub Scouts and 1st Topsail Venturer Scouts are building bat boxes to help boost diminished bat populations as a result of Geomyces destructans, a fungus commonly known as White-Nose Syndrome, which kills hibernating bats. The bat boxes will be placed throughout Kingston and in Newfoundland's Chamberlains Park.
For more information visit Scouts.ca/goodturnweek.
About Scouts Canada
Kids in Scouts have fun adventures, discovering new things and experiences they wouldn't discover elsewhere. Along the way, they develop into capable, confident and well-rounded individuals, better prepared for success in the world. For tens of thousands of children and youth across Canada, Scouts is the start of something great. Scouts Canada is the country's leading co-ed youth organization, offering programming for children and youth aged 5-26 in multiple languages, reflecting Canada's multicultural landscape and communities. For more information, visit Scouts.ca.
Scouts Canada is a not-for-profit organization (Charitable Registration No. 10776 1694 RR0028) and a member of the World Organization of the Scout Movement.
SOURCE Scouts Canada
Image with caption: "One Good Turn is all it takes to make a difference during Good Turn Week, April 22 May 1. (CNW Group/Scouts Canada)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20160330_C2853_PHOTO_EN_653523.jpg
Image with caption: "Scouts are challenging all Canadians to do a Good Turn as part of a national movement to spread and goodwill during the 7th annual Good Turn Week, April 22 May 1, 2016. (CNW Group/Scouts Canada)". Image available at: http://photos.newswire.ca/images/download/20160330_C2853_PHOTO_EN_653525.jpg
For further information: For interviews, to cover a local Good Turn Week project or for more information contact: Andrea McLoughlin, Holmes PR, email@example.com, 416-628-5609; Justin Zimmerman, Holmes PR, firstname.lastname@example.org, 416-628-5648