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From campfires to confidence: GirlGuiding NZ empowers girls and young women

Outdoor adventures, teamwork and fun are the hallmarks of GirlGuiding New Zealand. For over 100 years, the national organisation has empowered girls and young women to make a positive difference. Outdoor experiences, skills development and community engagement grow participants’ leadership skills, confidence and resilience. It’s a winning formula that’s tried and tested.


GirlGuiding New Zealand has a strong presence in The West, with more than 30 local groups. Over 500 girls and young women aged 5 to 17 enjoy GirlGuiding’s rich and varied programme, supported by around 70 adult volunteers.


‘We are all about encouraging girls to get active, get outdoors, and learn new things,’ says Funding Coordinator Soham Jajal. He adds that GirlGuiding’s programmes provide opportunities in safe, non-competitive environments to thrive and enhance wellbeing.


‘Camps and outdoor activities are a vital part of our girls’ journey in Guiding,’ explains Soham. He says it’s the perfect environment for them to learn leadership and teamwork skills. Furthermore, it develops an appreciation for the environment, ensuring girls understand resourcefulness. They also learn valuable life skills by coping with situations outside their comfort zones.


However, Soham says that much of the camping equipment in The West’s GirlGuiding units was old and no longer fit for purpose. It was time for an upgrade to satisfy current health and safety requirements.


GirlGuiding approached the Your West Support Fund for help. The $5,000 has been spent on providing new, upgraded camping equipment for units in The West. The organisation has purchased various gear, including tents, camp tables, cooking sets, hiking stoves, gazebos and much more.


‘Adequate, suitable gear ensures that all members, regardless of background or ability, can fully participate in outdoor adventures,’ Soham declares. He adds, ‘Now every girl can reach their full potential by taking on real challenges, dealing with unpredictable circumstances and learning to be prepared.’


Introducing new camping equipment has enhanced the experiences of members living in The West, ensuring they have a better and safer time. This upgrade means that even more young Westies can make the most of the challenges, adventures, and exciting learning opportunities that GirlGuiding New Zealand offers.


Are you interested in participating or volunteering? The GirlGuiding website has everything you need to know.


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