Rt Revd Peter Hancock, Bishop of Bath and Wells and his wife Jane were among a group of Somerset community and business leaders invited to meet with the South West branch of Girlguiding to find out how the groups might work together to support the guides.
The meeting was designed to showcase what modern guiding is all about, and to find out how the organisation can develop local opportunities for its members.
Girlguiding is the largest youth organisation of girls and young women in the UK today; with more than half a million members nationally and 10 million world wide. In the South West the guides are thriving and as a result it is now seeking to offer a wider selection of opportunities through its links with local organisations.
Bishop Peter says, “It is great to be supporting an organisation which helps young women develop life skills and grow in confidence; these are skills which will be invaluable to them throughout their life. It’s an organisation Jane and I support; both our daughters were girl guides, they enjoyed it very much.”
Guiding groups believe partnerships with local groups and businesses help strengthen community ties and can often result in the development of new and exciting experiences for young members.
At the event held at Haynes International Motor Museum in Sparkford, Girlguide Chief Commissioner Carol Pennington talked about the opportunities the girls have to gain new skills, to travel the world and most importantly to make new friends. “Girlguiding gives girls great experiences that they will enjoy now, remember forever and benefit from in the future.”
14 year old Alice Saxton is a Ranger and a young leader, “It’s like a family; everyone gets on well and there’s a place for everyone. We all have the opportunity to do our best but we get to do that in an environment without any pressure – we really enjoy it.”