Celebrating busy Girlguiding year

The Sussex West Guide Choir performing in Arundel Castle for the county annual review
The Sussex West Guide Choir performing in Arundel Castle for the county annual review

COMMUNITY projects at home and abroad, activities and performances were celebrated at the Girlguiding Sussex West annual review.

Adult leaders from seven divisions and the Trefoil Guild gathered at Arundel Castle last Wednesday to reflect on the previous year and see awards presented.

Guests included High Sheriff Denise Patterson, mayors and council chairmen, as well as Girlguiding chief commissioner Pip McKerrow.

County commissioner Annabel Gray said it had been an action-packed year, which had included the Big Brownie Birthday celebrations for the 100th anniversary.

The Sussex West Guide Choir, which entertained guests as they arrived for the annual review, had been busy, including a joint concert with Girlguiding Kent East Choir.

In the Arun Valley division, Rainbows made edible goodies, did some jazz dancing, took part in a sponsored Reindeer Run and visited Marwell Zoo.

Brownies celebrated their centenary at the County Star Quest activity day. They also held theme days and completed various activities to gain the Big Brownie Birthday Challenge badge.

Guides and members of the senior section were very active, geocaching, camping, indoor climbing and swimming. They raised money with a Comic Relief Danceathon and worked towards the Commonwealth Award.

World Thinking Day was celebrated as a division, which was a great success. The senior section particularly enjoyed the text wide game, completed in small teams, as it meant they were actually allowed to use their mobile phones.

Two girls from Arun Valley were chosen for trips to Malawi and Kenya.

An insight into the county’s international trips during the year was given at the annual review by Caroline Etchells and Joanna Erkiert.

Caroline spoke about the work she carried out in Uganda, helping to build a library and supporting children at an orphanage.

Joanna had visited Serbia, Romania and Budapest and seen how the lives of orphans had been changed through a fostering programme.

Queen’s Guide Awards, the highest level girls can achieve, were presented to Lauren Phillips, Jessica Baker and Hannah Cordery.Both Lauren and Jessica gave presentations to explain more about their work involved.

Leaders received long-service awards, for 20, 30, 40 and 50 years’ in Girlguiding.

County Awards, special prizes for achievement, were presented by the chief commissioner.

Pat Ware and Amanda Teasel received the County Silver Oakleaf, the highest award for leaders. The Big Brownie event organisers received certificates of thanks and other award winners included Angela Purser, Jacqui Denton and Ann Wheway.