Our strategy 2020+

Making sure we’re delivering for girls in the future

We’ve come a long way – and we’re thinking about what’s next

Since we launched our first strategy, Being our best, in 2015, Girlguiding, and the world around us, has changed a lot and the life experiences of girls and volunteers has changed.

Through extensive consultation and research, the Strategy 2020+ project has created a set of strategic outcomes and priorities, a theory of change and a set of youth participation principles. All of this will guide us towards our overarching goals for Girlguiding’s next few years.

The project started mid-2018 and is now anticipated to conclude mid-2020 – it was extended to give time fora range of strategy launch events across the UK. The work to deliver the strategy is now beginning as we kick off 2020.

What will our story be after 2020? What do we want to achieve for girls and young women? And how can we plan to get there? While our vision, values and mission will stay the same, how we deliver on that mission can change.

How you’ve been involved

In early 2019 we ran events across the country to hear from our members. What matters to girls and volunteers in guiding today and what do they want for our future?

We held five full-day events and spoke to members – including Guides, Rangers, young leaders and leaders across the UK – from Edinburgh to Ulster. The different groups discussed where Girlguiding is today and what changes they wanted to see. 

I enjoyed being part of something important for the future – Guide, Edinburgh

We also developed some free special edition unit meeting activities for all sections. These counted towards the Know Myself theme award and gave girls the chance to share their thoughts on what they like best about Girlguiding and what the future could look like. Feedback from these activities closed on 31 March. We had a whopping 25,959 girls take part across the UK.

We shared a culture survey and then a full strategy survey in summer 2019 to give young members aged 14+, volunteers, parents and staff the opportunity to feedback on the draft strategy. This was the chance for everyone to review the results of what all this work has been building towards, and what exciting developments are being proposed for our future. This was on top of multiple meetings, talks and events that the strategy team has gone along to, all to capture as many views as possible.

What we’ve been looking at

We’ve been asking you about lots of different things, including:

  • The lives of girls and women, today and in the future. How have they changed? How will they change in the future? And what does it mean for Girlguiding?
  • The difference that Girlguiding makes to the lives of our members, but also to our communities and society as a whole.
  • Our Girlguiding culture. Sometimes this is described as 'what we do when no one's watching' - our way of being, our values and how we behave.
  • Reaching out to even more girls and adults. How can we encourage more people join guiding?
  • How our young members can play an active role in and contribute to our decisions.
  • How is Girlguiding seen by those within the movement and those outside it?
  • How is Girlguiding structured and how is it governed – what works well and what are the challenges?

We’ve also been busy doing different in-depth pieces of research to help inform the strategy project. Looking at the world of Girlguiding from the inside as well as the outside. These have ranged from our organisational culture to youth participation, from our brand to the youth sector and volunteering and from growth to IT. There’s lots to come and we’re excited to share the end result of all of this with you when the strategy launches.

Here’s the roadmap of how we’ve got to where we are, and what’s to come this year.

What we’ve done:

  • Summer 2018: we consulted with trustees, chief commissioners, lead volunteers and senior staff to find out what they think. We also attended events like Wellies and Wristbands to talk to girls and young women.
  • Autumn and winter 2018: interactive sessions took place all around the country on lots of different elements of our strategy, including how our organisation is structured and governed, and what our culture is like.
  • February 2019: we ran a series of strategy events to gather the thoughts and ideas of older girls and volunteers on their Girlguiding experience now and the Girlguiding they want to see.
  • January - March 2019: we released a set of special edition strategy unit meeting activities for volunteers to run with their units. This was a vital way to gather girls’ thoughts from Rainbows to Rangers on what they liked about Girlguiding and what they wanted in the future.
  • April - July 2019: we wrote up all the thoughts and ideas from the activities and events and, alongside learning from our wider research, created a strategy draft that was presented to trustees and senior stakeholders. Key parts of the draft were tested with volunteers, parents, staff and the outside world - our partners and potential members - in a survey. 
  • August 2019: all the survey responses and final feedback went into a final draft of the strategy.
  • September 2019: Girlguiding UK board of trustees agreed the core strategy.
  • October - December 2019: the strategy content was used to inform the business plan for 2020 and the launch plan was started.

What’s next:

  • January - February: we’ll be preparing for the launch with a set of materials and events ready for girls, volunteers, staff, parents and those outside of Girlguiding who want to know us better!
  • March: we launch our strategy for 2020 and beyond
  • March: one team conference for Girlguiding’s senior volunteers and staff
  • Summer 2020: strategy roadshow - Girlguiding’s chief executive along with trustees and the chief guide team will tour around the UK introducing the strategy in your country or region.