“We don’t know what we’d have done without Girlguiding”

Find out why Joyce, mother of 1st Cupar Brownie Isla, doesn’t know what she would have done without guiding during lockdown…


Hi everyone, my name’s Joyce. My daughter, Isla, has been a Brownie since 2018 and she’s loved every minute of it.

Isla is an only child so we were very aware of the isolation she might feel once lockdown began. Thankfully having her Brownie meetings continue meant this didn’t happen; they helped so much.

Even though everything was so uncertain this time last year, her leaders kept posting fun challenges (including Adventures at Home activities) for girls to do and interest badges they could work towards on the unit Facebook page. Facebook meant we were able to stay in touch with Isla’s leader and it gave parents a safe space to post pictures of what our daughters were getting up to. This helped everyone feel more connected while apart.

I am so grateful to Isla’s leaders for adapting and adjusting so quickly in order to deliver virtual guiding meetings. Their dedication to giving their Brownies a space to relax, escape from everyday life and just have a laugh with their friends is what kept Isla engaged during online meetings. From organising fun online crafting sessions, to playing games, these volunteers are the reason the girls have still been able to meet weekly and have some much needed normality.

A huge highlight for Isla over the last 12 months has been working towards and gaining her Gold Award – she was the first Brownie in our area to achieve this. I’ll never forget the look on her face when her leader appeared at the door and surprised her with the award (in a socially distanced way, of course!). To make everything even more special, the following night her friends greeted her on Zoom with ‘Well done’ banners they’d made – it was the first time Isla has been left speechless!

Girlguiding has encouraged us to try new things that we wouldn’t have done otherwise, from upcycling a sandpit and turning it into a vegetable patch to joining girls from around the world to meditate together online. It has kept Isla connected and given her plenty to do and explore during these strange times.

When guidelines eased in the summer the girls were able to have fun at the park together and take part in scavenger hunts. The 1st Cupar Brownies leadership team have become like extended family – I regularly get requests to, “please take photos to show Brown Owl, Tawny Owl and Barn Owl!”

If you’re keen to register your daughter I’d say go for it! Girlguiding Scotland and their amazing volunteers have done their best to make sure as many girls as possible don’t miss out even though we’re all stuck at home. Your child will make amazing memories that will stay with them for the rest of their life.

As a family I don’t know what we would have done without virtual guiding during the pandemic. We can’t wait until things return to normal and Isla moves up to Guides!

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