My husband sent me this post today, written by his own fair hand (and without a joke in sight – makes a change). Over to A…
This morning one particular story in the news stood out for me that the Girl Guides are looking to overhaul their badges to make them more relevant for the modern world.
The BBC News website however provided a strange introduction to this positive news story, stating “Girlguiding is planning a huge overhaul of its programme, with classic badges replaced by new ones with titles liable to puzzle older generations”. Surely puzzling older generations is a great test of modernity and relevance? Perhaps a measure which will in fact be seen as a great success to the project!
Some of the new badges mooted after a consultation of members and inspiring role models include Vlogging, Entrepreneurship, Voting, Upcycling, Festival Goer, Speaking Out, Back Flip and Resilience. Olympic gymnast Beth Tweddle suggested the resilience badge to assist with improving mental health and well-being amongst young women.
It is worth reflecting on a few points. As we are in a General Election, my thoughts often drift to the struggle faced by the suffragettes to fight for the right to get a vote. I can only think that Emily Davison and Emmeline Pankhurst would approve of the evolving positive role that women play in society, and that these new badges will open up our young people to a wider perspective of opportunity and skills development.
At a conference in London this week, I was interested to hear from a representative from Women in Nuclear that having women on boards statistically improves profitability of companies. As a proud member of Women in Nuclear myself, who looks to increase diversity throughout the industry, I can only applaud the Girl Guides for opening a conversation on how women should and can develop and achieve in a modern world – developing inspirational leaders for tomorrow. Encouraging diversity in the workplace is about good business for good business reasons; not filling quotas and ticking boxes.
I, for one, just hope there is plenty of room for science, engineering and public speaking badges alongside social media, mental health and diversity.
What badges would you like to see the Girl Guides look at?