Seniors the perfect candidates to lead Girl Guides
GIRL Guides on the Gold Coast are desperate for leaders and helpers, and seniors are considered ideal for the voluntary roles.
Rangers leader and region manager Joy Ord volunteers at Tugun, although she lives at Mudgeeraba.
"The great thing about becoming a Guide at any age is that you get to have just as much fun as the young girls do," she said.
"It's the perfect place for those with experience to share it with others.
"We need people of all ages to join us and they can offer their skills in so many different areas.
"Some may want to work with the girls every week, supporting a leader or even becoming one themselves. Others may be great at bookkeeping or fundraising and would like to offer their help in that way."
Joy has been a Girl Guide for 30 years as a leader.
"I got interested because I really wanted Girl Guides for my daughter," she said.
"Then the lady who trained me invited me to her place and she cooked a roast chicken on a coathanger over an open fire, and it was delicious.
"She was very clever. It's one of the fundamental things we offer girls - outdoor adventure, and learning to cope with the outdoors.
"Last year the Gold Coast leaders went paddle boarding. We have had canoeing days, leaders' camps, and we often catch up for other social events. Our Christmas parties are also always a lot of fun."
Early in November, an awards ceremony was held to recognise Runaway Bay resident Audrey Severn, who has been a leader and member of Girl Guides for 65 years, and Shirley Little from Logan Village who has notched up 40 years of service as a leader for Junior Guides.
"A positive outlook and a zest for life is needed as a leader," Joy said.
"There's plenty of opportunities to slot in. There's huge scope for anyone who wants to put up their hands.
"You can specialise. Some people are interested in crafts, others in outdoor pursuits like archery and fossicking.
"Dads can help but can't be leaders.
"Leaders have to do some preparation and planning. The commitment in time is about three hours a week, plus some weekends and camps.
"Everyone who works with youth needs to hold a Blue Card (Keeping Children Safe card) which is free and we can help you apply for.
"You also need to be relatively fit and active to work with the girls on a weekly basis.
"However, if you are more of a 'behind the scenes' person, this is obviously not so important.
"The opportunities are there if you've got the get up and go."
Girl Guides have units which meet all over the Gold Coast, from Beenleigh out to Jimboomba and down to Tugun.
"As we include girls from aged five to 18, that's a lot of units. There are 13 districts in the Gold Coast region, that's 506 girls, 70 trained leaders and 40 parents to help on a roster basis," Joy said.
"A lot of the units are also at capacity because we need to meet ratio requirements for safety."
If you're interested in helping with Girl Guides, email Joy at firstname.lastname@example.org.