Shouting out about Girlguiding

Lead Volunteer for Membership Communications Tegan Jones reveals our plans to challenge perceptions and champion your amazing work through our new awareness campaign

Tegan Jones
11 Oct 2016

Whether it’s building confidence, developing skills or offering support, you help girls become the women they want to be

As a volunteer myself, I know that what you do is nothing short of amazing. That’s why I was delighted to see the Girlguiding timelines flooded this week with #YouAreAmazing posts, showcasing the brilliant things Leaders and girls all over the UK achieve. 

But what about outside of our organisation? Sadly, we know many people’s idea of Girlguiding is stuck in the past. How many times have you told someone about your volunteering and been met with a puzzled expression? ‘I didn’t know that’s what girls did in guiding!’, ‘You mean it’s not just Brownies and Guides? There are other sections too?’, ‘I was a Guide when I was younger, but I had no idea it was still running…’.

It’s certainly happened to me.

Our new awareness campaign

We’ve made some really great progress over the last few years in raising our profile and changing people’s perceptions of us as a charity, but there’s so much more to be done. And as part of Being our best, we’re committed to ensuring that more girls from all backgrounds benefit from what we do and the exciting opportunities guiding has to offer.

It’s for these reasons that we’ve decided to embark on an awareness campaign – we need people who haven’t heard of guiding and who don’t know what we’re really about to sit up and listen.

How have we been working?

Over the past few months, Girlguiding has been collaborating with youth marketing agency Livity to explore what an awareness-raising campaign for our charity might look like – who it would be aimed at, what format it would take and where it would be targeted.

At every stage of the process, members have been asked for their insight and feedback to shape the direction of the campaign, and - because this campaign is intended to reach new people - non-members have been consulted too.

What everyone agreed on was that by challenging people’s perceptions of Girlguiding, we can reach a whole new audience and start to change the way they see us.

What will our campaign look like?

Our research tells us that 25 to 34 year old women are currently the audience least aware of and inspired by what they think we offer.

To find out what would make them think again, we asked non-members in the target age range what they found most appealing about Girlguiding. They told us that they love that we give girls the tools to deal with the challenges life throws at them. We help them to grow into the women they want to be.

The volunteers who were consulted completely agreed – the guiding experience is different for every young member, but what remains constant is our passion for helping girls to become confident women.

While we couldn’t possibly show the world every aspect of guiding, I hope that you’ll see in the campaign a charity that you are proud to be part of. A charity which helps girls take on the world, enables them fulfil their potential, knows what they think and encourages them to raise their voices.

A time of change

It’s been a busy few months for Girlguiding, with some big campaigns hitting the headlines. We’ve launched our Action for Change initiative, started a petition to tackle sexual harassment in schools and released the annual findings of our Girls’ Attitudes Survey.

There’s also lots of hard work going on at Girlguiding HQ to actively support Leaders and volunteers to keep up the great work: we’re upgrading our Membership Systems, entering the second phase of our Quality pilot and improving access to guiding for volunteers with the Pears Foundation, to name just a few projects currently underway.

Our awareness campaign will support the wider plan to help Girlguiding be the best it can be.

Your first look

The work you do is incredibly important to this amazing organisation and we really value your commitment, which is why very soon we’ll be treating you to some sneak peeks of the campaign.

These previews will be for your eyes only, so make sure you keep these to yourselves for the moment. But on launch day, I hope you’ll join me in sharing the finished campaign far and wide! This is a great opportunity for us to shout out about the excitement, adventure and variety girls can enjoy in guiding and the unique qualities and skills you and your fellow Leaders offer that have such an impact on girls’ lives.

I can’t wait to see you get involved!