This video was the result of being asked to capture the thoughts of Girl Guides in 2015 for International Day of the Girl.
‘Girl Guides have a unique distinction in that they founded themselves’ – Robert Baden-Powell.
Girl Guides was really one of the first “feminist” movements. It began just over a hundred years in 1909 when a group of girls “gate-crashed” the first Boy Scout rally in London dressed as boys because they wanted to be able to participate in all the activities the boys were enjoying. They couldn’t be ignored and Girl Guides was officially founded a year later.
Our interviews revealed that even though in Australia today girls enjoy virtually the same opportunities as boys they are still feeling as if they are “second rate” to boys and men, particularly the teenage girls.
The younger girls all said, “we are equal” and thought there were no gender differences apart from sporting abilities but the girls we interviewed that were 12 years and older all intimated from their experiences that gender inequality is a learned behaviour.
The girls spoke of being labelled bossy if they took initiative or showed leadership skills at school or were branded as being “just a woman” by boys in their peer group.
What was inspiring though was the girls’ undaunted commitment to changing the prejudice and in what I would call an intuitive and positively feminine way.
Girl Guides is a great example of a volunteer movement of women providing a nurturing environment for girls to step up and practice their leadership skills, empowering and esteeming girls into becoming women capable of creating the positive change they want to see in the world.