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Thursday, 23 October 2014

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Three Cumbrian girlguiding leaders named Guiding Idols

Three girlguiding leaders from Cumbria have been named ‘Guiding Idols’ in recognition of the inspirational work they do.

Guiding Idols photo
Siobhan Gascoigne, Lyn Roberts and Anne Latimer

Siobhan Gascoigne, 54, from Brigham near Cockermouth; Anne Latimer, 47, from Little Corby, near Carlisle and Lyn Roberts, 43, from Ullock near Cockermouth are three of 48 idols, who were nominated as part of a new initiative to celebrate the hard work and dedication of Girl Guide volunteers in the north west.

‘Guiding Idols’ was set up as part of Volunteer Week, a national week-long celebration of volunteers that takes place every June.

Rainbows, Brownies, Guides and volunteers from the north west were invited to nominate those they considered role models who had influenced them in some way. A panel of Brownies and Guides aged seven to 14 then had the difficult job of picking 48 idols from the 137 nominations.

“The nomination was really good. I wasn’t expecting it at all so it was a nice surprise,” said Siobhan, who leads the Brigham and Broughton Brownies and has volunteered for girlguiding for 33 years.

Siobhan is also a girlguiding trainer and the assistant county commissioner for girlguiding in Cumbria north. This year she has clocked up over 600 hours of volunteering.

All of the nominated idols were invited to a special event held on July 27 at the regional headquarters for the north west in Preston. A plaque with the names of the idols was revealed and they enjoyed afternoon tea and other activities.

A Wall of Thanks was also created on the girlguiding website where members could leave messages to their idols.

Lyn Roberts has been a volunteer for 27 years and is a leader of Rainbow and Guide groups in the Broughton and Cockermouth area as well as being the division commissioner for the Girlguiding Derwent Division.

A message on the Wall of Thanks said: “Lyn is an inspiration to all members of Derwent Division. She has recruited many new volunteers, which has meant we could open three new Rainbow units, allowing more girls to enjoy guiding for the first time. Whenever you see her she is always smiling.

“Without Lyn many of our leaders would not have the confidence to run their own unit or become a leader. We do not know what we would do without her.”

Anne Latimer is the leader of the 1st Holme Eden Brownies and has been a volunteer for six years.

A message for her on the Wall of Thanks said: “Anne is a great leader, helping the girls do their Baden Powell Award, gain badges, and attend all the events that are available.

“Some of the Guides are a handful but Anne puts up with them as she knows they enjoy coming and they will grow into mature women because they have been involved with guiding.

“Hopefully Anne keeps the unit open for years to come, she has helped me so much since I was 10 as a Guide, I am now a young leader at the Guides, and I won’t leave. This is what guiding is all about!”

The ‘Guiding Idols’ initiative has been such a success it will now become an annual event.

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