Jill – guiding in the heart of Glasgow

IMG_3542Rising to the rank of lead volunteer for guiding Scotland’s biggest city, as County Commissioner for Glasgow, is no small achievement.

But Jill will take over the role in January 2016 at the tender age of 30 – while also holding down a busy job as a project manager at Glasgow Life and running Guide and Senior Section units.

For her, it’s just another way to give something back to the city she loves.

“I’ve always been in Glasgow, and I’ve been in guiding Scotland since I was a Rainbow and stayed with it all through university.”

Jill is currently working on the World Gymnastics Championships which is coming to Glasgow in the autumn. So how does she balance a busy job with her volunteering roles?

“It’s about achieving a balance between the two – and I have a great team behind me.

“The key is forward planning and time management – so if I have a busy time coming up at work I’ll get support with planning guiding activities.”

She is clear that being a part of Girlguiding Scotland has helped her to get where she is today.

“At university, guiding helped as I had the opportunity to plan events at unit, district and division level.  It gave me excellent practical experience such as time management, commitment and communication.

“It still helps me do my job because it’s helped me understand volunteers and what’s important to them.”

What’s special about guiding in Glasgow?

“It’s such a massive vibrant city so it’s great having access to all the brilliant events and facilities.

“And because it’s so large and diverse there’s a huge variety of people, backgrounds and skills that we can tap into.

“When we come together at County events, it’s really special to see how many different people are brought together through guiding.”

She loves seeing girls grow and thrive through guiding.

“It’s fantastic to see the girls develop and to help them on their journey.

“Seeing someone starting out as a ten-year-old Guide and then get to 19 or 20 years old and single-handedly planning big events like our Wee-G-Opoly wide game for this this year’s annual event and taking on big challenges like the Queen’s Guide Award.

“But my favourite guiding memory has to be taking 40 Guides to Paris and making the poorly-timed decision to climb to the top of Eiffel Tower on Valentine’s Day.

“There’s all these people down on one knee proposing and then we all rock up! It was priceless.”