Through guiding I've travelled, learned skills and made friends
Mary tells us about the amazing experiences she's had and skills she's learned through guiding
I've realised that no matter who you are, or what your background is, there's always a place for you in Girlguiding. It's a place where girls can feel comfortable talking openly about any worries or issues they may have.
I've realised that no matter who you are, or your background, there's always a place for you in Girlguiding. It's a place where girls can feel comfortable talking openly about any worries or issues they may have.
I've met many friends, both older and younger than me, in guiding. They're very supportive and offer me help whenever or wherever I need it. They're also people I know I can rely on.
In guiding I've been lucky enough to take part in many trips and camps, both locally and internationally. Each year my unit organises a May Day camp for a weekend, and a Christmas trip. We also like to do fun things like bowling, ice skating and roller blading.
A few years ago I was chosen to go to Ghana, along with some other girls from around the North West of England. We spent a week with Ghanaian Brownies and Guides, learning more about what they do in guiding as well as visiting their Headquarters. The second week was spent at a charity home, where we taught orphans and street children the basics of hygiene, some craft ideas and many games.
One boy came up to me on the last day and said ‘Thank you, you have taught me how to make friends’ – and this is something that guiding allows me to do.
College and university have targets and exams, whereas in guiding we learn through volunteering. We're forever being given opportunities to learn new skills and increase our knowledge, sometimes without even realising it!
I've done so many badges and awards. Some I'm proud of are my Baden-Powell Challenge Award and Leadership qualification.
Each award shows the ongoing challenges we're able to take on through guiding, and it doesn’t stop once you join The Senior Section! I'm currently working towards my Queen's Guide award, which is difficult to manage around working and being at university. But it's allowing me to learn so many skills as well as increasing my knowledge on issues as varied as the low pricing of cow’s milk and sports leadership.