Have your say on our 18-25 offer

Lead Volunteer Rosalyn Old shares the latest on our 18-25 offer and asks for your thoughts

Rosalyn Old, Lead Volunteer
13 December 2017

You’ll have heard by now that The Senior Section will be going through some changes in line with the new programme launch in 2018

There’ll be a year of transition between the current and new programme, and in autumn 2019 the current structure and programme of The Senior Section will phase out.

But why?

The change over to the new programme gives us a great opportunity to think about what happens for members once they turn 18 and become adults. How can we continue to create great experiences, challenges and fun, whilst also encouraging all members to step forward and take their place in the world? How can we provide opportunities for our members to shape and lead our organisation? And how can we appeal to more young women to join a movement which is empowering and impactful in today’s society?

Through consultation in 2014 and 2015 you told us that we needed to look again at The Senior Section and make it more appropriate. What’s right for girls and young women aged 14-18 isn’t necessarily right for adults aged 18+. And membership numbers make it clear that we have to do more to ensure that Girlguiding is appealing to all women, both for your own development, and to help you find the skills and confidence to move forward as an independent woman.

So what does this mean if you’re 18-25?

Firstly, now is your chance to speak up and let us know what skills and opportunities you’d love to have as we work on the 18-25 offer. As an organisation we want to create something more flexible, age-appropriate and meaningful for you. Secondly, it doesn’t mean that you have to be a unit leader or leave. As an adult, from age 18 onwards there’ll be a range of opportunities open to you.

What about our units? Why do we have to leave them?

We don’t believe that, as an adult, you need a leader to coordinate when and where you meet your peers. We want to empower you to arrange how you network with your fellow members, whilst still feeling part of a bigger community. Through the consultation we’ll look at ideas for how this could work and what resources you need. We want to give you the freedom and flexibility to shape your own guiding experience.

What will the new offer be like?

We don’t know yet! We think that it’s really important that the offer for 18-25 year olds is shaped by the people it means most to - current Senior Section members, future members, parents, Girlguiding volunteers and people who might like to join us. We’re currently gathering ideas from as many voices as possible, bringing them together with research to shape the new offer.

Timescales are tight, which is why we’ve opened consultation so close to Christmas. We want to give as many of you as possible a chance to think about what you’d like from guiding while you have time away from school, work or uni. You’ll have a month to complete it.

You’re already telling us that you want to develop new skills that are relevant in other parts of your lives. And that you want to build your confidence and have experiences that are about you as well as supporting younger members. We want to create opportunities that make a difference to you, as well as the world you live in.

You represent the future of Girlguiding which is why we want to support you to find out what your skills and passions are, and what you have to give to the wider world. Both for yourself, and to inspire the next generation of girls.

How can I make my voice heard?

We want to hear from as many members as possible while we’re working on the 18-25 offer. Consultation will continue throughout January, but you can get involved now by filling out a survey. Please complete the survey before 14 January 2018.

We’ve also recruited a task and finish group of volunteers to work on this project, who'll be speaking to as many members and non-members as possible over the next month. Because we needed to get the group set up before Christmas, we asked those who applied to the lead volunteer role to join the group and got nominations from chief commissioners. We also wanted to make sure the group represented as many members across the UK (and overseas) as possible. The group are:

  • Kirsty Smith, London and South East region
  • Kate Fawell-Comley, London and South East region (formerly North West England)
  • Bekky Ashmore, North West England
  • Evie Old, South West England
  • Rosalyn Old, Scotland (formerly Anglia)
  • Nicola McCauley, Ulster
  • Bethan Howells, British Girlguiding Overseas
  • Becca Downton, North East England

Keep sending your ideas to [email protected]. And for the latest updates, keep checking the Our Journey pages and make sure you're signed up to receive YeSS. We really are reading and considering all suggestions for the new offer.