The Spike: or, Victoria College Review 1912
Some women students began the formation of the Girls' Club by collecting small children from the cheery lanes in the vicinity of Tory and Taranaki Streets, and telling them of the proposed arrangements. Interest was further stimulated by a wild and unruly pincic to Island Bay, with eight or nine children, who enjoyed themselves thoroughly. The first meeting was held in page 74 the Vivian Street Sunday Schoolroom, the temporary clubroom, und there little groups of eight or nine children sew eagerly at mysterious articles, which reveal themselves, on closer inspection, as tea-towels, oven-cloths, kettle-holders, and clusters. These are ill intended for "our house—a house o' dreams—which is so real in each child's thoughts that pennies are actually saved from the clutches of that penny snatcher, the sweet shop man, and kept to help towards "our house," as they term our club-room which is to be.
A listener might hear startling remarks sometimes about the students in command, who may possibly have been encountering small children, and coming off decidedly second best, the climax being reached when a small child turned and mutter-angrily "mingy devil." Of course, most club nights end with one dispute al least, but in spite of the oft-repeated threat, "We arn't coming no more," the injured infants invariably turn up next time, smiling amiably through the dirt.
What the children think of the Club is told by a composite letter from hem, written amid great excitement:—
"I am now going to tell you a little of the performance we go through at our club, in a room at the back of the Baptised Church. When we get to club, we begin to drill, which 1 like very much. If we are early, that is seven o'clock, we get a red wafer alongside our name. We then all divide up into groups, A, B, C, D. A's group sews dusters, B's group sews tea-towls, C's group sews kettle-holders, D's group sews oven-cloths, as we are all very busy making things for our own house, which we hope to have soon. We enjoy the evening very much, but the most pleasing time is watching the wafers being put up. One is for punctuation (?). one for the best driller, and another for the one who improve most in four days.
"After supper, we have to get a hymn book each, and then we choose a very pretty little one and a teacher plays the organ while we sing. When we have finished we go home, hoping text Thursday will soon be round."page break