I joined my local Guide unit this April, after starting at university in September. I had wanted to take a break from Guiding to settle into university so had just been doing some chilled, behind the scenes work until I decided to volunteer in a unit. If you are thinking about volunteering with Guiding, please register your interest.
This has been my first term helping at Guides:
Week 1: back to Guiding after our Easter holiday break. We planned out what the Guides wanted to do for the rest of the term and then let loose with a game called ‘Balloon Frenzy’. This involved blowing up lots of balloons and then going around in teams and trying to pop everyone else’s (it got very competitive).
Week 2: we decided to split the Guides into groups so they could work on group activities for a few weeks and get some more badges! This week I helped one of the teams to make a very healthy fruit salad, which was wonderful until it turned out that neither I nor the Guides could work out how to use a potato peeler… (it is my first year away from home!).
Week 3: this week, I was more in my comfort zone as I was helping one of the groups to get to grips with some first aid basics. They were learning vital skills such as putting people in the recovery position, how to use an AED and how to deal with people going into shock. This week really highlighted to me how important the skills that our members learn are and how amazing it is that I got to be involved in delivering them.
Week 4: this week, I helped one of the teams think about the social impact they could have in our wider community. They made posters about the dangers of littering that could go on in our local grassland area and then thought about how they could help with encouraging more people to recycle. We also packaged parcels to send to Ukraine via a local charity, which the girls loved doing as they were able to help with a big issue that they had seen in the news.
Week 5: a treat this week, as we ventured out of the local meeting place and down to the trampoline park! Two of our amazing Guides had won Jack Petchey awards, and one had chosen to use it to take the unit out and about. The girls loved it and I got to have a bounce too, which was much needed after a hectic day at university. They were also very excited to have a slushie after all that bouncing around (apologies for the sugar-filled car rides home that week!).
Week 6: back after half term and the Guides had chosen to find out all about Girlguiding during the wartime. I’d taken two weeks off for my exam period, so missed out on all the chaos! One of our ex-Guide leaders came to talk about the role of Guides in the war and then they got stuck into learning morse code and how to tie some very advanced knots.
Week 7: off from Guides again, super sad to have missed this one as the Guides were having a celebration evening. One of our Brownie and Guide units celebrated their 90th anniversary and all the parents and supporters were invited to an open evening. The Guides had loads and loads of fun (and the supporters did as well!).
Week 8: back to Guiding after some time off for exams and I was straight back into it! This week, the Guides finished off their badges and I helped one group work out how to use a map and a compass – it took me twenty minutes to convince them that places without service and Google Maps exist!
Week 9: this week, the Guides went to our local outside area and built outside ovens to have a go at some wartime cooking. They were actually very successful and produced some wonderful pancakes, covered in golden syrup of course! Later in the week, we also took our Guides (along with some very excited Brownies) to see the Women’s UEFA Denmark vs. Germany game which they absolutely loved. It was the first time a lot of them (including me) had gone to see a football game in real life and it was amazing to see them all getting inspired – especially since Germany went on to play in the final and they watched the Lionesses win!
Week 10: our last week at Guides for the term and we were back at the local scout hut. They played a huge game of capture the flag and enjoyed cooling down with some chilled games after the heat of the day. We gave out some more badges and then said goodbye for the summer holidays. At the end of the week, I went with some of our Guides on our District trip to Chessington World of Adventures which you can read all about in our blog!
I had a wonderful time at Guides this term and can’t wait to get back to it in September!