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Girl Guide camp money must be returned: court

By Bob Bruton, Barrie Examiner
Monday, July 18, 2016 4:48:44 EDT PM

More than $240,000 raised for a never-built Girl Guide lodge north of Barrie must be returned to donors, an Ontario court has ruled.

The Superior Court of Justice, in a June 16, 2016 decision, has ordered the money returned to donors, or directed at their discretion, and that a letter be sent advising them of their choices and giving them 90 days from the decision to respond.

“That’s the vindication there, that the donors won,” said Sylvia Dufresne, one of the 19 defendants in a case involving Girl Guides of Canada.

“It’s good for all charities, I think, to pay attention that when money’s raised for something, it had better be used for that,” she said. “I consider that a really important lesson from this case.”

Girl Guides of Canada’s National Office could not be reached for comment Monday by the Examiner.

Camp Tewateno is 100-acres of land along Gill Road, just outside Midhurst, owned by Guides Canada.

The Camp Tewateno development committee raised money for a new lodge there, but fearing the property could be sold, would not turn the funds over to Girl Guides.

A statement of claim filed with the courts accused the group of refusing to account for the money raised, as well as wrongfully retaining possession and control over the funds.

The group said it was rightfully holding onto the money until it received assurances from Girl Guides the money would stay in the community and be used to build a lodge at Camp Tewateno.

Girl Guides of Canada officials said at the time there was never any intention to sell Camp Tewateno.

But Guides Canada launched legal action against members of the Camp Tewateno development committee.

At one point Dufresne separated herself from the other defendants, she said, because a settlement not to her liking was being worked out with Guides Canada – until the Ontario Public Guardian and Trustee became involved.

An arm of Ontario’s Ministry of the Attorney General, it can protect the public’s interest in how charities raise and use their money.

“The Public Guardian stepping in is what finally turned the whole thing around,” Dufresne said of the seven-year battle.

The court ordered $19,729 returned to the Barrie Bingo Sponsors Association, as well as $240,205 to those who had made a donation to Camp Tewateno between 1994 and 2009.

‘At the time of donation, you were informed that the money was being raised in order to build a new lodge at Camp Tewateno and develop the camp,’ the letter from Guides Canada reads. ‘However, due to unforeseeable events GGC (Girl Guides Canada) has decided that this lodge will not be built.

‘Instead, these funds will, at your election, be returned to you or be reallocated to other GGC initiatives which will enable the betterment of GGC and its members.’

The donations can be reallocated to subsidize girls from lower-income families so they can attend Girl Guides camps. Or the funds can go to the Canadian World Friendship Fund, which would then transfer them to the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts for programs outside Canada.

The Ontario Superior Court of Justice decision includes a list of 75 donors to be repaid, including individuals, businesses and associations.

Dufresne said that in the course of the battle with Guides Canada, members of the Camp Tewateno development committee were turfed from an organization many had been with for decades as volunteers.

Despite an endorsement from Justice R. MacKinnon, who made the court decision, Dufresne said their status with Guides Canada remains unchanged.


Camp Caritou Pasta Dinner


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Please join us for this fundraising dinner. Proceeds go towards our ongoing efforts to keep Camp Caritou.

Saturday March 5, 2016
Trinity United Church
$10 for Adults
$5 for Children 12 and  under


Pasta Dinner 2016 Poster (pdf)

Friends of Camp Caritou – Country Dinner

You are invited to a Caritou Country Dinner!

Proceeds go towards Friends of Camp Caritou, in their ongoing legal battles to save Camp Caritou.


Wednesday December 3, 2014
Adults $15
Children (12 and Under) $10
Trinity United Church
Corner of McIntyre and Ferguson
North Bay, ON

Join us for dinner, and spread the word! Let’s pack the house!

Download the poster and share it around:
Caritou Country Dinner PDF (1.1MB)

Camp Caritou Announcements

Annual General Meeting for Camp Caritou: February 6, 2014, Pasta Dinner - March 1, 2014

Come out and support our cause!

Friends of Camp Caritou is having its Annual General Meeting. Please join us if you can, on Thursday February 6, 2014 at 7:30pm, at Trinity United Church (corner of McIntyre and Ferguson, North Bay).

Mark your calendars as well for the Friends of Camp Caritou PASTA DINNER! Saturday, March 1, 2014, 5-7pm, also at Trinity United Church.
$10 for Adults, $5 for Children

We hope to see you there!

Bayfield Guiding – Campers Return to Klahanie

6 Nov 2013
Article originally from Bayfield Breeze.

Camp Klahanie is 40 years old in 2013 and has been given a new lease on life thanks to the efforts of the Goderich Lions Club. It will, however, remain true to it's roots, acknowledging that it was first given to local Guiding for $1 by the Hindmarsh family.

Camp Klahanie is 40 years old in 2013 and has been given a new lease on life thanks to the efforts of the Goderich Lions Club. It will, however, remain true to it’s roots, acknowledging that it was first given to local Guiding for $1 by the Hindmarsh family.

Full Article (Scroll down almost to bottom of page)
Support Camp Klahanie by voting through the Aviva Community Fund, Nov. 11-25:
The International Day of the Girl Camp at Klahanie held on Nov. 2-3 was a dream realized by many after Girl Guides of Ontario suddenly closed the camp in November of 2009. Four years of challenges and negotiations resulted in the property being sold to the Goderich Lions Club. It is now being revitalized for youth in Huron County and beyond to use and will officially open in Spring 2014.

The members of Bayfield Guiding were allowed an early visit to the property over the weekend. It was a meaningful return for a few of the older girls and their leaders and an exciting new experience for others.

The weekend was filled with crafts, games, songs, fresh air activities and outdoor cooking much of which celebrated being girls and women with rights and freedoms. The membership learned that in some countries in the world girls and women aren’t afforded the same opportunities as they have in Canada, that some face challenges even to go to school or to drive a car. They also learned a bit about the Famous Five and how they played a role in bringing women’s rights to the forefront in this country in the 1920s.

The Bayfield membership are now eagerly anticipating returning to Camp Klahanie in the New Year (many thought they should visit every weekend) and look forward to sharing it with other youth organizations in the community.

Camp Klahanie has a bright future ahead of it and it could be even brighter if the Goderich Lions Club is successful in their quest to make it into the Top 10 in the third and final round of the AIVA Community Fund competition that begins on Nov. 11 at noon.

In the second round of voting, that ended on Nov. 4, the Camp Klahanie Revitalization idea, finished just shy of 17th position. If all of the current supporters vote everyday in the third round and others rally their support the idea has a very good chance of making it to the semi final and a chance at winning $50,000.

One of the goals of the Camp Klahanie Board of Directors and Lions members is to provide better facilities for co-ed camping opportunities. A second building with washrooms is needed to realize this goal. In addition there are dreams of having a hiking trail around the property and individual camping bunkies hidden in the woods for campers to fully enjoy camping in nature. Beyond the dreams there is a real need to replace the roof on the kitchen building and picnic shelter in the very near future.

The Aviva Community Fund is, according to their website, “an annual competition that is changing Canadian communities by bringing great ideas to life. The most popular ideas, as determined by passionate Canadians like you, will have a chance to win a share of the $1,000,000 Aviva Community Fund.”

The competition has three qualifying rounds. The third round will run from Nov. 11-25. People are encouraged to vote for the cause everyday to help the project move to the semi-final. New voters will have to register but all it takes is an email and a password. Here is the link Anyone on Facebook who would like helpful voting reminders is asked to join the group known as: “Goderich Lions Club – Camp Klahanie Revitalization”.

Camp Caritou – Fall Luncheon & Recipes in a Jar


Hello Friends of Camp Caritou,

The Board of Directors, with the support of many of our members, continue to work towards saving Camp Caritou. We are making slow and steady progress as we continue to work through the legal process.

We would like to invite you to help us with our efforts by supporting our next fundraiser:

Recipe-in-a-jar (or bag) gifts
pdf_sm Recipe Order Form 2013 (PDF 57KB).

The recipe-in-a-jar comes with all the beautifully layered dry ingredients packaged suitable for gift giving. It come with with simple instructions to make a wonderful homemade recipes. We offer a variety of soups, texas cornbread, cranberry white chocolate quick bread, s’more bars, cookies, friendship tea, and even dog biscuits. What a wonderful gift. With the purchase of three or more we can even wrap them in a gift basket for you. Orders can be placed by completing the attached order form and mailing it, or handing into any board member, or you can email your selection to

If you are not sure what recipe looks good, or you would like to see the choices yourself, then our Fall luncheon is a great option.

Friends of Camp Caritou Fall Luncheon
pdf_sm PDF Flyer – Fall Luncheon 2013 (740 KB)

Everyone is welcome!
Saturday October 5, 2013
11 am to 2 pm
Trinity United Church (Corner of McIntyre and Ferguson)
Adults $7.00 Children 12 and under $5.00
(Special thanks to Rebuilt Resources for their generous support!)

We will be serving all the recipes that will be available as Recipe-in-a-jar gifts as well as have Recipe-in-a-jar gifts available for you to purchase.

At the luncheon you will also be able to purchase Friends of Camp Caritou T-shirts, as well as join as a member or renew your membership for next year.

FOCC t-shirt pocket size logos

Thank you for your continued support!

If you have any questions or would like more information please don’t hesitate to contact us at

Friends of Camp Caritou Annual General Meeting

Friends of Camp Caritou Inc.
2nd Annual General Meeting

February 7, 2013 – 7 pm
Trinity United Church
111 McIntyre St E
North Bay, Ontario

You are invited to attend the 2nd annual general meeting of the Friends of Camp Caritou Inc. It will be held in the Fireside room at Trinity United Church. There will be an un-audited financial report available. Refreshments will be served. If you are interested in joining as a member or taking an active role in our activities, please let us know. T-shirts and craft items will be available for sale.

President’s Report
Secretary’s Report
Treasurer’s report
Membership Report
Thank you
Election of New Director(s)
Appointment of financial reviewer
Other business

News Article: Camp Aneesh fight continues

Camp Aneesh fight continues
Owen Sound Sun Times
Rob Gowan
Sunday, January 13, 2013

The battle to keep Camp Aneesh open for local Girl Guides continues despite a recent court ruling to throw out a claim by a local group.

“We are still as committed as ever,” said Mary Beth van Trigt of Friends of Camp Aneesh, a group formed to keep the camp open. “It is frustrating how long everything takes, but that is the way it is. There is paperwork back and forth and I had to put a whole bunch of paperwork together to substantiate our claim in the first place.”

In December, Ontario Superior Court Justice Katherine van Rensburg ruled that the action be dismissed “without prejudice to the plaintiff or some other party or parties commencing a fresh proceeding.”

Read the whole article here:

News Article: Girl Guides group fights to save Owen Sound camp

Dec 26, 2012
The Toronto Star
Andrew Livingstone, Staff Reporter
Sarah van Trigt, centre, holds a box of Girl Guide cookies that features a picture of her and fellow guider Gillian Tremlett, right, enjoying their experience at Camp Aneesh in Owen Sound. Sarah’s mother Mary Beth, left, are fighting to save the camp.

For six years Mary Beth van Trigt has been teaching Girl Guides to stand up for what they believe in.

In March 2011 a friend showed her a real estate ad: Camp Aneesh, a locally backed centre of activities for Guides in Owen Sound and surrounding counties for nearly four decades, was up for sale.

Instantly she knew what she had to do. It was time to be a good Guider.

“We want to stand up for what is right,” van Trigt said. “We have a bunch of grassroots women who are doing our best to keep Guiding what it’s supposed to be.”

The provincial Girl Guides organization, which took over all the Guides camps in the province in 2007, now wants to sell the rural camp and use the profits to fund other more successful camps in the GTA, among other things.

Van Trigt and other parents and Guide leaders believe Camp Aneesh will make or break guiding in Bruce and Grey counties. They’re fighting to regain control so they can keep it open.

“Without our camp close and affordable . . . we really feel Guiding will die,” said van Trigt, a Guide leader for more than six years.

Guiding is an inclusive movement that doesn’t discriminate over race or religion; therefore, she said, it should also avoid bias against rural Guides.

Click for the full article:–girl-guides-group-fights-to-save-owen-sound-camp

Camp Caritou Fall Tea, Bake Sale and Craft Sale – Sat. Oct. 20, 2012

Welcome back to a new Guiding year.
Your friends involved with the “Friends of Camp Caritou Inc.” would like to thank everyone for your continued support with our efforts to save Camp Caritou and let you know that our efforts continue. Our lawyer and the lawyer for Girl Guides have been exchanging information. Although we are still not able to use the camp we are pleased that it has not been sold. This is a camp that can benefit us all.
“Friends of Camp Caritou Inc.” is continuing to raise funds to support our efforts and would like your help.

Upcoming Events

Caritou Fall Tea, Bake Sale and Craft Sale
Trinity United Church – Corner of McIntyre and Ferguson
North Bay
Saturday October 20th, 2012
11:00 – 3:00
Adults $5.00 and Children $3.00

We encourage and welcome donations to our bake sale and craft sale. We would love to see Sparks, Brownies, Guides, Pathfinders, Rangers, Trefoil, and others do a craft or baking for us. If you are able to make a donation, please let us know or just bring it to the tea in the morning.
We always welcome new members. If you wish to become a member of the Friends of Camp Caritou you can fill out a membership form. They can be found at under Camp Caritou.
Please find attached a flyer. We would appreciate if you could please distribute the attached invitation to your girls, Guiders, friends and family.

Download the flyer pdf (1.15 MB)
Friends of Camp Caritou Fall Tea 2012 -Flyer