The 22,000-strong Girl Guide Movement in Australia has called on major political parties to ‘think of a better tomorrow’ in this year’s election.
The statement was developed on the basis of feedback from members of the guides, as well as the adults who manage and volunteer for the organisation.
"Girl Guides are very clear about what the leaders of all persuasions should be planning for," said Helen Geard, Chief Commissioner of Girl Guides Australia. "Many of our members can’t vote and it is vital that their voice and the voice of the broader Girl Guiding movement is heard."
The position statement seeks:
- To develop future female leaders through informed leadership pathways
- Better understanding of the needs of Australian girls and young women through targeted research and policy dialogue
- Enhanced participation of girls and young women in planning and policy development about their future
- Support for the post 2015 UN Millennium Development Goals
- Volunteering to be included in the national productivity agenda.
“Girl guiding has a unique role in creating a world where girls and young women are valued and empowered to take action to change the world,” said Ms Geard.
“Guiding supports girls and young women to develop as leaders, grow their self-confidence, build skills in citizenship and take action on issues important to them.”
Membership of Girl Guides is open to girls from 5 to 17 years of age (depending on which state), and women 18 years and over.
Girl Guides were formed in England in 1910 one year after the establishment of Boy Scouts by Robert & Olave Baden-Powell. Over 1 million Australian women have been, or still are, girl guides.
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Information about joining the Girl Guides is available here.