Our fab Guides and Rangers had a fun-filled day of developing their leadership skills as part of an initiative between Girlguiding and the British Army.
On Saturday 22 February, as part of World Thinking Day, some of our Guides and Rangers visited Fulwood Barracks where they completed activities from the Lead Skills Builder. They also took part in other fun and challenging activities designed to test their team-working abilities and to develop their leadership skills.
The activities explored how girls can make difficult decisions while remaining fair, and also explored how they can manage lots of tasks while prioritising others. The girls enjoyed working together to create tyre towers, although some got a little bit distracted and did roly-polys instead – we all know that a guiding event isn’t complete without a little bit of light-hearted mischief!
Once the girls got their giggles out of their system, they came back to their leadership tasks and enjoyed team-building using planks; the challenge was to get from one side to the other, without touching the ground. It's a lot harder than it looks, but we think they smashed it!
Each group of ten girls - out of almost 100 - were paired with two soldiers, who worked with those girls throughout the day, offering inspiration about careers for women in the Army, and giving them positive encouragement as they completed their activities.
Coleesha, aged 13, said: “I learnt how to be fair and learnt that The Army is about more than just rolling in mud. There is a place for girls within The Army.”
Evelyn, aged 11, said: “Francesca, our soldier mentor, can do any job, and through her, I believe that I can have any career I choose.”
Holly, aged 11, said: “The soldiers joined in with us while encouraging us to make our own decisions during our activities. They empowered us to take the lead and to believe that we can achieve anything we put our minds to.”
Nearer the end of the day, the girls each created and gave a certificate to one another and shared what they thought their recipient did exceptionally well throughout the day. The day ended with a celebration ceremony where the soldiers awarded the girls with their well-deserved badges.
Maj Daniella Aspin, who supported the event, shared: “Fulwood Barracks is delighted to have supported the Lead, Stage 5 Skills Builder Day. Effective leadership is at the heart of what we do at The British Army, and our soldiers were very pleased to share these skills with the young women at Girlguiding North West England.”
Julie Walton, Region Chief Commissioner, said: “What a brilliant two days! We were so well hosted by the Army who acted as mentors to our girls in developing their leadership skills. It was very refreshing for our girls to realise that they could achieve whatever they wanted to in life; they had some excellent female role models to show them how it’s done. Interestingly, it was a real learning experience for the Army too - they didn't realise that we had so many girls and young women as members. We are actually bigger than they are! Hopefully, there is lots more to come in the near future in other locations around the region.”
It was a fantastic way to celebrate World Thinking Day weekend and to see some future leaders in the making!