Here, leader Wilma from Perth & Kinross talks about her own experiences and how school units can make a big difference to girls’ lives…
“I’m a support and learning teacher and trainee classroom assistant at a school in Perth & Kinross. I decided to pursue setting up a new school unit after noticing quite a few families in the area were unable to pay to join Girlguiding. To make sure everyone could be involved I went to the school and county with my idea – soon after I was holding unit meetings during the Thursday lunch break.
Thanks to help from Girlguiding and the county I got the support and funding I needed to make the school unit a reality. Since everything got up and running, and girls started joining, we’ve had some unforgettable experiences.
I personally put a lot of time into starting the unit – I raised funds on my own and my daughter joined as a unit helper – but getting to see the positive changes we’ve brought to girls’ lives makes it all worth it.
A huge highlight was taking the girls to a panto. Around 90% of the unit had never been to one and one of the girls said it was the best day of her life.
The school has noticed the impact the unit has had too. There has been a significant shift in the behaviour of the girls who attend – it encourages them to comes to school because they’re excited about going to Rainbows.
If you’ve noticed similar issues in your area, and you’d like to bring guiding to more local girls, I would absolutely encourage you to start a school unit if you can. Unit attendance continues to be really high which shows how much the girls are getting out of coming. I love what we’ve done and it’s nice to know we are making a difference.”
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