I want members to have a positive experience of sport

Sarah Woodman is passionate about getting girls and volunteers into sport

28 December 2021

We offer loads of adventurous activities for our members.

We’re supported by a national outdoor team who help volunteers feel confident to take members of their unit on new experiences. Sarah Woodman is our sports outdoor specialist and wants to get more young members to discover the awesome power of sport.

She has been a Guide leader for more than 20 years, helps Rangers get their Duke of Edinburgh award and works for the NHS.

Being the outdoor specialist for sports and being part of the national outdoor team has been a real privilege and has given me the chance to learn loads more about Girlguiding. I work with a great team of volunteers and staff who give girls and volunteers access to new experiences and opportunities.

Sarah took on the role to give more opportunities for girls and adult members and help them learn new skills and get qualifications. She says: ‘So many girls disengage from sport at school and guiding gives them a safe space to try sports and activities.

‘There are so many brilliant female sports teams from UK and they are a real inspiration to our girls and young women. There are some really great sporting initiatives within the different Girlguiding countries and regions - so much good stuff to learn and share!’

Sarah is inspired by the memory of one of her former Guides, Vicky. At one of their Guide meetings, the unit were doing an air rifle shooting taster session. One of the instructors spotted Vicky’s talent and she went on to achieve medals at international competitions.

‘It was a real moment for me to realise the role of Girlguiding in giving opportunities for new experiences and opening doors to its members that they previously didn't know were there for them,’ says Sarah.

Sarah hopes that guiding will continue to offer the chance to have a go at different sports as well as officiate them. She says that there are so many leadership skills to develop skills through supporting, coaching and instructing qualifications and watching live sport events.

‘I feel a real sense of achievement when something that we have worked on, introduced or improved at a national level gets shared at a division meeting to all the local groups a few months later,’ says Sarah. ‘You get to see the actual benefit and improvement at grassroots.'