New research: volunteering with guiding helps you climb the career ladder

Almost half (44 per cent) of Girlguiding Scotland’s volunteers say that giving their time to guiding has boosted their career chances by helping them get a job or work experience, new research released by the charity today (Tuesday 22 December 2015) reveals.

A survey of more than 200 Girlguiding Scotland volunteers in October and November 2015 found they believe it’s given them skills and experience that are attractive to employers including leadership skills (91 per cent), planning and organisational skills (91 per cent), team working skills (89 per cent) and communication skills (79 per cent). More than a third (36 per cent) say it’s helped them get onto a course, further education or training.

99 per cent of volunteers also said that guiding has had a positive impact on their lives,  with many reporting it has helped them make friends (98 per cent), have fun (94 per cent), boost their confidence (79 per cent), do something they never thought they’d do (59 per cent) and even travel (49 per cent).

And while volunteering with guiding has a great impact on volunteers’ lives, 91 per cent of volunteers also say that one of the best things about guiding is the chance to give girls and young women across Scotland amazing opportunities.

Zoe Bonthron, 34, a Brownie Leader from East Lothian who has been a Girlguiding Scotland member since she became a Brownie 20 years ago, believes the leadership skills she’s learned through guiding helped her get on to her MSc course.

Zoe, who works for Edinburgh Council and is studying part time for her MSc in Public Service Leadership at Queen Margaret University, said:

“Volunteering with Scottish guiding has given me the confidence to try things I wouldn’t normally have tried – it really challenges you to be the best you can be.

“I have learned to think quickly on my feet and deal with challenges calmly and confidently.

“These transferable skills have been very beneficial in my professional role where critical decision-making is vital.

“In a competitive world, the skills I have developed by volunteering with Girlguiding Scotland are a great asset.”

Sue Walker, Girlguiding Scotland’s Scottish Chief Commissioner, said:

“The work our 12,000 volunteers do to bring guiding alive for our young members is truly inspirational and as our survey shows, volunteering with guiding can change your life too.

“There are more than 6,000 girls across Scotland waiting to join guiding, so we’re always on the lookout for new volunteers to ensure every girl who wants to gets the chance to take part.

“If you’re after a new start this Christmas, we’d love to hear from you!

“As a volunteer you could find yourself helping girls learn about stars, campaign for women’s rights, go camping or even travel abroad.”

“In return, we look after our volunteers with dedicated support, training and skills development.”

If volunteering with Girlguiding Scotland sounds like something for you, find out how to join here.

You can also read the press release about our survey.