The new programme, one year on

A year into our new programme journey, Lead Volunteer Jess Bond tells us about the progress made so far

Jess, Lead Volunteer for programme
21 Nov 2017

One year ago I read about our plans to transform the Girlguiding programme with a mixture of excitement, anticipation and perhaps, a little bit of trepidation

This would be the biggest-ever overhaul of the programme for all our sections - a big project and one I’m now very proud to be the lead volunteer for. 

Being a member of Girlguiding has given me the chance to learn many life skills (we’re not all born campers!), to take on new challenges and to face my fears. I want to make sure we carry on broadening the horizons for thousands more girls and young women in the future. 

It’s quite incredible for me to think about how much has happened since I took on this role in March! Take a look and remind yourself of some of the updates so far.

Having your say

The common thread that runs through everything we do in Girlguiding is that our young members are at the heart of it all. And transforming our programme hasn’t been any different. Over 31,000 girls and leaders have tested different aspects of the programme and given honest feedback. And 69% of activities have been changed, improved and developed as a result of this feedback.

Excellent progress is also being made in the development of a new digital tool for unit leaders and Rangers to keep track of progress towards the new badges and awards. We'll need your help to make sure this is useful. So we'll be reaching out for input before we launch a first version next summer, and then continually learning and updating what the tool does throughout the transition year. More to come on this in the next few months.

Is your unit trying out our new unit meeting activities? Every main unit contact should have received a taster pack and we’d love to hear how you’ve been using them. Why not let us know? Please fill out our survey so we can continue to develop the activities we offer in the future.

Take our new activities survey

Take our new activities survey

Take our new activities survey

We’ve been really happy to receive feedback from some units already about how you’re getting on with the taster packs. Here’s a taster of what we’ve heard so far:

The Senior Section developments

We’ve announced lots of exciting developments to The Senior Section recently:

  • A fantastic 1,800 members responded to our call for name suggestions for the new 14-18 section. And in September we asked young members aged 12-25 and volunteers for The Senior Section to help us select their favourite name – Rangers was decided!
  • The age limit for this new section will be a member’s 19th birthday
  • We want to make sure that all girls and young women are supported to attend the programme most appropriate for their age. But for some members with disabilities transitioning to the next stage of guiding can be tricky, so for them we'll continue to be flexible on the upper age of each section. For Rangers this will be 26.
  • We’re now taking some time to consider what Girlguiding looks like for 18-25 year olds. More information will be released in the coming months, but to kick things off we’re really excited to announce that Rosalyn Old has been confirmed as the lead volunteer for this project.

Getting involved

We've been sharing the news of our programme transformation with the public too, especially via our #BadgeGoals campaign. This campaign was a great success, the week we launched #BadgeGoals in May, the hashtag was used 2,188 times and was seen by a whopping 13 million people around the world! We’ll continue to raise the profile of our programme over the coming year as it’s the perfect opportunity to help us recruit new volunteers. And the new programme will make it easier for us all to keep running great units.

Remember that not everything is changing though. Our Promise and Law, the guiding spirit of adventure and challenge, the fun and friendship, and our local traditions and events will still be really important to us all. My own Brownies have just had a great evening trying out the Strike a Light activity from the taster packs (for many it was the first time they had ever lit a match) but we still found time for one of our favourite ever activities, Glow Stick Bowling! 

Before the launch of the new programme in summer 2018, we’ll be working hard to: 

  • Design and create the badges, awards and resources for girls
  • Develop lots of practical resources to help leaders
  • Reveal the new brand and uniform members have helped choose for Rangers
  • Announce great opportunities for our 18-25 members

Keep looking out for more information coming up in the next six months and how you can get involved. In the meantime, if you want to get in touch or have any feedback about the programme please email [email protected]