Wednesday, 8 January 2014

Wednesday Wonderings 001..

I'm not sure that Wednesday Wonderings will become a new regular feature, but today it seemed like a good idea.

Lately, I've been giving this a lot of thought in the hope of reaching a decision and I think it would be good to get some other views on it.


My Guide unit.

I've been running this unit for a little more than 4 years now. I was asked to take over from some leaders who had suddenly decided they couldn't continue, as a temporary measure whilst other leaders were found. That was in 2009.

I've got to start by saying that I totally love running meetings, organising events and seeing the girls enjoy the things we have organised with them. I'm a spokesperson for Girlguiding and could therefore bore you silly on the reasons why volunteering for them is rewarding, and how it can be a great thing. Without a doubt I agree with all of these things. And I think that makes this decision even harder.

At the moment, I share the running of this unit with a parent helper. She's been with me from the time I started, and we work well together, get on well and, I think, make a good team. She has made the decision to finish her role at the end of the summer term, as both of her girls will have been through and moved on from Guides, and she wants to be able to spend her free time with them rather than spending weeks away on guide camp in the summer, weekends away throughout the year, etc. (I fully understand and support her decision).

Although we've been actively looking for a couple of years now, we haven't been able to find another leader who would be willing to take over. I can't run the meetings on my own, so the unit can't continue in autumn if another person isn't found. All fairly straightforward so far. 

This particular unit (I run others, as well) is not in my town. I have a 40mile round trip every week during term time, and any other time we do anything; district meetings, leader meetings, sleepovers, trips etc. (Yes, of course, there are units nearer to me which I could probably help with).

In the same town, is another guide unit, which has recently moved to the town from a neighbouring village, where they'd met for many years, in the hope of attracting more girls. Their unit has a few girls. Ours has about 16 girls who come on a regular basis. Neither unit is full, so in terms of numbers, there is no reason why the units couldn't be combined. This is where the quandary begins.

I don't know whether to leave at the end of the summer term, as well. The other option, should the units be combined, would be that I could help with the joint running of that unit, I suppose. However, knowing the unit team, I don't think I'd be happy working with them. I know this makes it sound as though I'm being awkward, but I don't think we share the same outlook; we certainly do things differently.

I guess my dilemma is  that I don't know whether I ought to try and stick it out and work with them, if that's what it comes to, or whether to just have a clean break. I feel as though by leaving, I'd be failing the girls in my unit.

I'm not sure what to do. If you've read to the end of this post, then thank you, and if you have any advice it would be greatly appreciated..


  1. Ohh I'm not sure that I have any good advice to give, other than you I don't think you would be failing the girls in your unit by leaving. You have to do what's right for you <3

    Jennie xo |

  2. You'd not be failing the girls in your unit! You've given so much over the years, to a unit which has only kept running because of you. There's a chronic shortage of leaders (as we all know!) so sometimes even with lots of trying, it's near impossible to recruit someone.

    I know lots of leaders, many of them I like and we can work well together, others I like but I know we wouldn't work well, just as you say, having different outlooks etc. I love Girlguiding, and I love being a leader and seeing the girls enjoy it, but I need to enjoy it too, seeing as I'm a volunteer and not being paid! So I wouldn't want to work with a leadership team I just didn't get on with, as ultimately I think that would be to the detriment of the unit as a whole.

    Personally, I'd leave at the end of the summer term. That gives two terms' notice to the district and parents, which is enough time to merge with the other unit if that happens, or for the girls to go elsewhere. Also, some parents may come forward to volunteer if it is definite that the unit will close otherwise. I know it's hard, but I think a clean break sounds good, you have your other commitments and you don't want to spread yourself too thinly...that's not good for anyone!

  3. I have no advice than to listen to what your gut instinct tells you Char xx

  4. It's a difficult one, I want to start by saying you're doing an amazing job! I had no idea this was all happening away from home, there's so much travel involved for you over and above the workload already. I think you could be brave and work with the other lot and it might work out better than you hope, but that's the optimistic view. What I'd hate is for you to do it, then hate every minute of it. So it's risky. I agree with the other comment above that you'd not be failing the girls, as you've given so much already, but it would be disappointing to see the group disperse. Maybe someone would come forward if they knew it was definite that you'd be closing/merging...but then that's leaving things hanging for you for now.

  5. Time to think about you Love.You've given so much so don't feel bad.I agree with the last two comments wholeheartedly.They really said it all :-)

  6. I think you know my thoughts. Xxx you're not letting anyone down

  7. I think you know my thoughts. Xxx you're not letting anyone down

  8. You have to do what is best for you. Whatever you decide on just know that you won't be letting anyone down. xx

    PS sorry if I've commented twice, I had an error message the first time!

    Leanne - A Slice of My Life