Delighted recipients of National Guide Award

Merlin Woods Guide Unit in Galway saw its first recipients of the Trail Blazer National Guide Award this year! It is a young Unit (established in 2013) and Aoibha, Rosa and Emily were delighted to be the first from the Unit to receive the prestigious Award after working hard to achieve it. Here they write about their experience:

Throughout the past year I have been working towards the Trail Blazer Award, which I finally received on Saturday 13 October in Croke Park, Dublin. I worked very hard on this badge and was honoured to receive this Award.

I was one of the first ever Brownies to join Merlin Woods Brownie Unit when it first opened back in 2011. I was enrolled as a Guide in September 2014. Last year I was determined that I wanted to get the National Guide Award with my two other friends so I began to work hard to complete all the challenges and earn more interest badges.

It took a lot of time and effort while working for it and we did many different badges and challenges and went to different events, but it was all worthwhile! My favourite part of the year was when I helped out at the Ladybirds and Brownie meetings. I enjoyed showing them all the cool aspects of Guiding!

Overall, Guides has taught me many skills and offered me many opportunities over the years, so to finish the course and receive the National Guide Award really meant a lot to me. Guides also introduced me to a lot of new hobbies I never knew I was interested in, like camping and kayaking, but by far the best thing I gained from Guides was the friendships. Some of my best friends today are those in my Patrol. At the award ceremony in Croke Park I was fortunate enough to re-encounter fellow Guides I met at Timpeall An Domhain nearly two years ago and at IGGNITE last year. These girls are from all around the country and, if it wasn’t for Guides and participating in these events, I never would have met them.

Irish Girl Guides and this Award also taught me about dedication, between doing all the different badge work and choice challenges at meetings to the great example set out for me by my amazing Leaders who give up their time. If it wasn’t for them, I never would have received this Award!

The day of the Award ceremony was so much fun. We went up on the train to Croke Park with my friends, parents and Leaders. When we got to Croke Park I was amazed at all the Guides there. We went outside and got our pictures taken in front of the pitch and then went inside for the ceremony. It was a nice ceremony and I was very happy when it was my turn and received my pin and certificate. It was also a great experience going up onto the stage to receive the award.