Why are we refreshing the Queen's Guide award?
We talk to our specialist volunteer for youth awards to find out a bit more about why we are refreshing our top award.
The Queen’s Guide award has been a beloved part of our programme since the 1940s.
It's a real challenge, that gives candidates the opportunity to grow their skills, contribute to Girlguiding and their community whilst having lots of fun. We want it to be an award girls and young women are proud of taking on, created for them and by them and keeping it relevant to them.
We talk to Sophie Keaveney, Girlguiding's Specialist Volunteer for Youth Awards to find out a bit more about the project. Sophie works closely with volunteers across the organisation and our staff team at HQ, to develop the awards offered to Girlguiding members and to ensure the best possible support is in place for volunteers who make these awards happen.
When did the project start?
In April 2021, we launched a national consultation with coordinators and candidates about our top award, the Queen’s Guide award, which hadn’t been fully reviewed for some time. We wanted to gather feedback on all its elements. As a result of this consultation, we received feedback from 55 coordinators, and 370 candidates.
What did this consultation tell us?
For coordinators, there is a variety in the type and level of support they receive in their roles, with 70% of coordinators feeling they needed more standardised support. This is mirrored in the responses from current candidates, 50% of which said they wanted more support when working on their award.
The programme was also found to be quite confusing, and there's a need for more flexibility in certain elements. In addition, there is an outstanding question as to who the Queen’s Guide award is aimed towards and whether the age and time restrictions reflect this.
What are we doing about our findings?
As a result of this consultation, we are looking to develop the Queen’s Guide award in three key areas:
- Support for coordinators and candidates
- Clarifying and developing the award elements
- Reviewing the age and time restrictions for the award
The first step is to set up a task and finish group, made up of members from across the organisation, who can work with us to develop the award, to make sure it is accessible and relevant for all members.
If you are currently working towards your Queens Guide award, joining the task and finish group will also count towards Service in Guiding element four.
We are also recruiting for a working group to finalise the Queen’s Guide award celebration event, which you can apply for at the same time as this one if you’d like to be considered for both. This is a fantastic opportunity to shape the highest award you can work towards in Girlguiding and we would love to hear from you!