Recruiting new girls

Here are some ideas to bring more girls to your unit

Ready to give more girls the chance to start their guiding adventure? 

There are countless ways to recruit more girls. It doesn't matter where you are or what budget you're working with. Check out some of these ideas you can try in your local area. 

Use our recruitment and growth toolkit 

For girl recruitment, we have a toolkit of resources you can use including:

  • A guide with ideas about how to use our materials and videos. 
  • Social media graphics, copy examples and social media headers. 
  • Resources about Girlguiding to share with new volunteers and prospective parents. 

Download our toolkit and materials here.

Hold a ‘bring a friend along’ event 

A ‘bring a friend night’ is when every girl in your unit is encouraged to bring a friend to the unit meeting. It could be a friend from school or another club. Or it could be an adult in their life, like a family member, who isn't already part of Girlguiding. It's a great way to introduce both new girls and potential volunteers to Girlguiding. 

Here are some tips for how your unit can host an amazing bring a friend night: 

  • Set the date of the bring a friend event in advance so girls have time to invite their friends and help plan the meeting. 
  • Ask every girl to invite a friend who isn’t already a member to the meeting or event. Let them know this can be an adult in their lives too. 
  • Girls could make special personalised invitations during a unit meeting. 
  • Remember that you’ll need to get consent forms from parents or carers of visiting girls, so it may be a good idea to send these out with the invitations. 
  • Share these guidelines with visitors to your unit meetings. They cover the basics of keeping a meeting safe. 

Don’t forget to read our recruitment resources. They explain how you can encourage and involve parents or carers and other adults in guiding too. 

Check out these suggested activities that are great for introducing new girls to your unit: 

  • Rainbows: Memory mates – Get to know your Rainbow friends a little better while scoring some points in this icebreaker! 
  • Brownies: Buddy bingo – Get to know all your fellow Brownies better in this tricky ice breaker. 
  • Guides: Hello my fabulous friend - Keep a straight face in this fun icebreaker to get to know everyone in your unit.  
  • Rangers: Think and throw - Test your memory and coordination while getting to know your guiding friends in this quick-paced icebreaker.

Once you’ve held your event, be sure to follow up with girls and parents or carers afterwards to see if they’re interested in registering. 

Recruit in schools 

Write to schools and let them know about local guiding opportunities. Ask the headteacher if you can get involved with some of these things: 

  • Run a talk or assembly. Try to find out if you’d be able to run an assembly for anyone interested in joining Girlguiding. Find out what facilities are available, what the age range of the pupils is and how long your session could be. 
  • Run a stall. This could be at parents’ evening, a school fair or an open day. Why not bring along a fun activity for girls to try too? 
  • Setting up displays and handing out leaflets. See if you can put up posters on school noticeboards, give out postcards in the playground, or have postcards put in girls’ book bags. 
  • Guiding in the holidays. Ask schools if you can use their premises to run a holiday guiding programme to give non-members a taste of guiding.

Run a community event

You could also do things for your wider community. There could be lots of places near you that would like to support local guiding by giving you space to set up a stall or network with potential new members. These could be: 

  • Local shopping centres, supermarkets, cafes or libraries.
  • Local networking events for parents and carers.
  • Activity days for the community, like sports days or summer events.  

These are all great places to set up a stall and invite more people to learn about what Girlguiding can offer girls. 

For more support on recruiting locally, check out more information on The Big Help Out. There’s lots of ideas and materials you can use to run a recruitment drive. 

Being inclusive

Know the local area

This will help you to decide which communities you need to reach and other aspects that you need to consider. For example, whether you're recruiting from a very rural area without transport links or if there are likely to be a lot of people from low-income families.

Consider reaching out to local communities and leaders - their advice may help you in your planning. Seeing people from their community involved in guiding can help girls to feel welcomed. 

Cost can be a big concern for potential new members. Read our advice on ways you can welcome girls from lower socio-economic backgrounds. 

Have open conversations

This means asking the right questions to potential girls, parents or carers like: how can we support you to join Girlguiding? Read our inclusive language guidance for tips about how to make sure your language is accessible and welcoming to all. 

Use inclusive recruitment materials

  • Are recruitment materials easily accessible for everyone?
  • Do you need materials in alternative languages or formats? For large print versions of resources, contact our online shop. If you need resources in alternative languages, consider contacting people from the local community for more support or local university language departments. 
  • Have you printed some of our inclusion pages? Having these printed and available can reassure people that we are an inclusive organisation. 

Read more about equality, diversity and inclusion in Girlguiding.