Your Voice Matters

Speak Out champion, Morag tells us about Welcome to Your Vote week and getting her voice heard


Hi! I am Morag and I have been a member of Girlguiding since I was 7. I am currently a Ranger and a Speak Out Champion for Girlguiding Scotland. Welcome to Your Vote Week is from 29 January until 04 February to help young people understand more about politics and democracy and how it has an impact on everything in the world around us. 


From how long we stay in education, the extra-curricular opportunities available to us, to rules of renting, or how often the bins are collected, there are so many important issues that affect us and can be impacted by our ideas and opinions. The theme of this year’s Welcome to Your Vote Week is “Your Voice Matters”, which celebrates how all young people can make an impact on the issues important to us – whether it’s to start a petition, cast a vote, or use another idea to get our voices across, there are many ways big and small that can have an impact. 


Welcome to Your Vote Week is important because it helps young people better understand how and why we should use our voices to make change and helps build our confidence in deciding what our future looks like. Through Girlguiding Scotland I have been able to have my voice heard more at unit meetings, get my ideas and opinions across when discussing and organising events and taking the lead when organising activities for the younger members of the unit. I have helped organise fundraisers so my unit could visit 1 of WAGGGS’ 4 world centres and learn more about different countries around the world, and hosted skills-building and activity nights for my Brownies to help them learn new things and build up my own confidence in taking charge. It is a safe space where I can just be myself and express my interests. I am also a Speak Out Champion for Girlguiding Scotland, which means that I use my voice to help build and deliver advocacy campaigns as part of a team and create real change. In 2023, the Speak Out Champions launched the Own Our Zone campaign talking about how we can make public spaces safer for girls and young women. We all took part in designing the policy calls, challenge pack and in engaging with MSPs and decision-makers about what change is needed for public spaces.  


There are many ways that Girlguiding Scotland young members, volunteers and units can get involved in Welcome To Your Vote Week. This could be through the ‘Make Change’ skills builders, or by taking activities from the Own Our Zone challenge pack that encourage girls to present speeches and write to local representatives about why safe and accessible public spaces matter. Units could support girls and young people to talk about things that matter to them and then teach them the process for voting, as part of a mock election. There’s a ‘Voting’ interest badge for Rangers. Units may also want to hand the planning over to their young people, supporting them to decide what activities best represent the issues they care about and what to talk about. 


You can find out more information on Welcome To Your Vote Week at, Resources | Electoral Commission