4 August 2010 - 15 things to do before you're 15

Ambitious girls call for the chance to travel the globe, learn self defence and become entrepreneurs


~Girlguiding unveils 15 things to do before you’re 15’ ahead of Centenary Summer Adventures~

  • Girls identify opportunities to travel, meet an inspiring role model and learn to manage money before they are 15 as being essential for developing self-confidence and fundamental life skills

  • 500,000 members take part in exciting summer adventures to celebrate Girlguiding Centenary with 5,000 girls from over 40 countries camping out at the International Centenary Camp
  • High-profile women including author Joanne Harris, politician Jo Swinson and MOBO founder Kanya King lend their support to calls from young women

30th July 2010: Today, 5,000 girls from 44 countries are preparing to kick off the Girlguiding International Centenary Camp, the flagship event of a summer of adventure, in which 500,000 members will take part.

As Guides gather at the Centenary Camp at Harewood House in Yorkshire, and tens of thousands more take part in regional sister camps, young members of Girlguiding have launched their top ‘15 things to do before you’re 15,’ aiming to give girls and young women greater opportunities to build their self-confidence, learn new skills and enjoy a wide range experiences.

Girls are keen to face their fears by scaling a mountain, getting up on stage and travelling abroad without parents. Beating the recession and earning £100 was also popular, alongside meeting an inspiring role model, campaigning on an important issue and directing a short film.

The Centenary Camp, which kicks off tomorrow, is just one of the adventures that girls will be taking part in with Girlguiding this summer. Other adventures taking place include:

  • 400 members taking to the seas and sailing around the UK on a Tall Ship.
  • 10 young women will attempt to swim the Channel and re-create the success of Girlguiding’s 1966 Channel swim team.
  • More than 200 girls will race across Europe in the Centenary Stampede.
  • Over 400 Guides and Senior Section will be jetting off for adventures in Botswana, East Asia, Uzbekistan, India and Mexico to name a few

Liz Burnley CBE, the Chief Guide said: “From our hundred years of experience of working with girls and young women, we know how important it is to provide girls the skills and experiences they need to confidently face their future.

“We know that women are still under-represented in many professional fields and are often not offered the same opportunities to take on adventurous activities as boys. Therefore ‘15 things’ is not just a fun to-do list but also an important tool to help girls build their confidence in themselves and raise their aspirations.”

Author Joanne Harris said: "From visiting a developing country to understand how people live there, to swimming a mile in the open sea, having adventures is a key part of growing up and fundamental to helping young women realise their potential.”

Politician Jo Swinson said: "Life can be challenging at times, and so positive action through extra curricular activities can prepare young women for the future. Activities like reading, running, hiking and dancing are a fantastic way to boost confidence and help girls to develop the skills which are needed for tomorrow."

MOBO Founder Kanya King said: "We know how important self-confidence is to raising the aspirations of young women, and the opportunities that girls are calling for today are all about building skills and trying out new thingsThe opportunities Girlguiding offers girls like going to gigs, directing short films and watching the sunrise are all an important part of growing up and are experiences you will remember forever."


15 things to do before you’re 15


1.          Go to a gig – See your favourite bands live on stage

2.           Explore the deep blue – scuba dive, sail the seas or get rafting

3.           Get your voice heard – take part in a campaign for something you care about

4.           Become a businesswoman – beat the credit crunch and earn your first £100

5.           Skill-up in self defence – learn the right moves to take care of yourself

6.           Set a trend – design and make your own outfits and jewellery

7.           Expand your horizons – travel abroad and make friends in other countries

8.           Break boundaries – challenge yourself and face your fears

9.           ‘Do’ muddy - go to an outdoor event and enjoy the British weather

10.       Reach new heights – scale a mountain, ski or go ice climbing

11.       Learn to save a life – get a first-aid qualification

12.       Watch the sunrise –  see the midsummer dawn with your mates

13.       Channel your creativity – have an article published or direct a short film

14.       Choose a role model – meet someone who inspires you

15.       Find your inner star – perform a song, a play, or a speech in front of an audience.





To make a secure online donation to Girlguiding please visit www.girlguiding.org.uk. Every penny received will go directly towards giving girls memories that will last them a lifetime.



For further information please contact Frida Williams on 020 7149 3706 or the Girlguiding Press Office on 020 7592 1733.

Notes to Editors

Girlguiding is the UK’s largest voluntary organisation for girls and young women, with around half a million members and recognised volunteers. Over a third of girls and young women (aged 7-21) are involved in guiding, or have been in the past and almost half of all the women in the UK have been involved in guiding at some stage in their lives.  We run Rainbows, Brownies, Guides and Senior Section, enabling girls and young women to develop their potential whatever their ability or background. We are striving to offer new opportunities to a broad diversity of communities through our expanding network of 60,000 trained volunteer Leaders.

At Girlguiding we seek to give girls a voice and provide a unique, girl-only space where members feel comfortable just being themselves. Our members, challenged by a girl-led programme that extends beyond badges, enjoy a spectrum of activities from outdoor adventure to pop-concerts to community action.

Girlguiding, part of a worldwide Movement of approximately 10 million girls and young women in 145 countries, launched its Centenary celebrations in September 2009.  Registered Charity No: 306016, file:///C:/Documents%20and%20Settings/Frida/Local%20Settings/Temporary%20Internet%20Files/OLK66/www.girlguiding.org.uk

Girlguiding Centenary Camp is supported by Welcome to Yorkshire, the official tourism agency for Yorkshire http://www.yorkshire.com/

Guiding has had a positive impact on girls' lives for the past 100 years.