County e-Letter
2 November 2017

October has provided us with a continued opportunity to enjoy that last holiday of the year and enjoy the lovely weather and autumn colours and it is now November/December that we start preparing to provide activities and crafts within our units that have a Christmas Theme. I hope that some of your units will have an opportunity over the next few weeks to contact Nursing/Care Homes and arrange for our young members to visit, perhaps sing carols or make and take a small gift for the residents or simply to just go along and have a chat with the residents. I have received contact from one or two of our homes in Wiltshire asking if there were any units in their area who would like to visit and I have put them in touch with units that were delighted to make contact and arrange a visit. I do hope that you and your unit will include this valuable community work in your program over the next few weeks. Try and give your local home a ring I am sure they will be pleased to accept an offer of a visit.

Christmas Card Competition

Thank you to every Leader and Unit who participated in the County Christmas Card Competition I am pleased to say it was well supported and we had a good number of entries.  Our County President and members of the County Award Committee carried out the judging of the competition with the following results:
  • Rainbow from 2nd Melksham Rainbows
  • Brownie from 1st Netheravon Brownies
  • Guide from 1st Westbury Guides
  • 1 Leader/TG/SS
Many congratulations to all the young members who were successful and thank you to the Leaders for participating in the competition. Thank you to Adele Price the County Arts Coordinator for organizing the competition. Adele is considering the possibility of a County Calendar next year – Please keep photographs throughout the year that may be suitable for a competition in the County. There will be a limited supply of Christmas Card packs in the County for sale very soon.

County Website

Thank you to everyone so far who has contacted Nigel Eve, the This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., and arranged to sign up to the County Web site. We are progressing slowly and it is hoped that all members in the County are signed up to the site by the end of December. The web site is where you will find information relating to the County, forthcoming trainings, new appointments and vacancies and all matters relating to your Divisions. When leaders have signed up the aim is to produce a County update (Similar to SW Region) on a regular 5/6 weekly basis which will drop into your email box – please ensure all personal information is up to date on GO. Bustard will appear once a year and include our County Review.
Some Leaders are requesting photographs to go up on our website, I am currently working with Nigel to ensure that any pathway for this will be secure and I would ask that when sending photographs to Nigel you ensure that you have permission for the photographs to appear. The next newsletter will advise on an appropriate way forward with presenting photographs on our website.

Division time at Berwick 2018

Please support your Division Commissioners with the day or weekends that they are planning – Membership Growth and Retention relate very much to transition work within the three sections and these planned weekends will be with a theme to encourage Rainbows to participate with Brownie activities, Brownies to participate in Guide activities and Guides to integrate with Young Leaders and Senior Section – this is all in readiness for the new Guiding program which will be starting next year. Please visit the National Girlguiding Website or the Guiding Magazine where you will find information relating to the new program. Program training will be provided within the County and you will find the details within this website when dates have been arranged.

Queens Guide Advisor

Our Queens Guide Award and Senior Section Coordinator for the County, Pam Rainsley, completed her term of appointment in September and I am sure many of you would wish to thank Pam for all the support, expertise, sense of fun and friendliness during her period working in this role. Pam has encouraged our members to gain Queens Guide Awards and provided various opportunities for our Senior Section members and for this we thank you Pam. I am pleased to say that Maz Matthews has kindly agreed to take on the role from Pam and I wish Maz well in her new County appointment.

Residential Qualification

You will be hearing from your Division Commissioners that I will be holding a meeting at Berwick for Leaders who have a Residential Qualification in/out of doors. We currently have no Outdoor Team and without an Outdoor Team there are Leaders who will be unable to gain future qualifications and there could potentially be members who do not have an opportunity to camp or participate in residential weekends/weeks. Please support this initiative when you hear the information from your Division Commissioners and come along and find out more and become part of a County Team. I would like to encourage Leaders to come along and find out what being part of this new County Outdoor Team will be about. Please give your names to Division Commissioners as soon as possible.

Safe Space

Safe Space information will be coming through your letterbox from Region over the next few days/weeks. There is a booking form THIS FORM IS SENT BACK TO REGION not to Divisions or County. The Training in February is in Salisbury and mileage claims will be met be Units or Divisions. I suggest car share where you can enable mileage costs to be shared between units. Please try and attend the trainings in Salisbury otherwise you may need to look at travelling to another County and this could incur further mileage costs.

Just a Thought ....

Are you taking part in the UK Parliament week? Many Units in the County have signed up to this event. Please put your reports/outcomes from the event on our website.
  • Have you signed up for the Region Day in March next year "Dance for all in Filton"
  • There is a new SWEBOTS Resource coming out from Region in November – WATER
  • Transition Day December 2nd - There may still be places available – speak to Julie Brown at Region Office
Look forward to more Leaders and Trefoil members joining us on the County Website and thank you for all you continue to do to take Guiding forward in the County.
Best Wishes
Fran Westlake
County Commissioner