“A Brownie thinks of others before herself and does a good turn every day” – a rule that applies to all age groups within Girlguiding and was realised with huge enthusiasm and to great effect by Rainbows, Brownies, Guides , Young Leaders as well as adult leaders and Trefoil members from all over South Cumbria recently in order to raise over £5000 for St Mary’s Hospice in Ulverston.
The hospice is 30 years old this year and thus Girlguiding members from North Lonsdale Division came up with the “30 days of care” challenge. Over 600 girls and adults chose a challenge, every day for 30 days, from one of four sections: care for oneself, care for others, care for the community and care for the environment. The chosen tasks resulted in sponsorship or donations.
Some of the girls picked litter, built bug hotels, made and decorated cakes to sell, put together comfort bags for the children’s ward at the local hospital, potted plants to give to the community, or helped prepare for a village gala. They also brought in hay bales, volunteered in charity shops, helped to calf a cow, cleaned village railings and benches, and, perhaps particularly challenging, went without electronic media for a while and let their families enjoy periods of silence.
There was lots of fun as well, as for Zara Clough, age 10 from Lindal Brownies said: “It was great raising money for St Mary’s Hospice because when I washed the car I soaked my dad with the hose” with a slightly more frustrating experience for 10-year-old Katrina Muncaster, also from Lindal Brownies who “gave the bench cleaning a lot of attention and then cursed the birds for all the pooh after I had finished cleaning.”
Lindal Brownie leader Janice Lloyd said: “We wanted the challenges to reflect the idea of care”. She has been “amazed by the response – over 600 girls and adults from more than 43 units across the County have taken up the challenge, having fun and raising money for such a worthwhile cause. We thank everyone for their support.”
At a celebratory picnic at Ulverston Victoria High School a cheque for £5097.49 was handed over to Clare Paling, the fundraiser for St Mary’s hospice, who declared herself “blown away” by the amazing efforts and the money raised by this challenge which “has reached the breadth and depth of the community which we serve. I hope that this was a fun way to fundraise and that it has inspired everyone to care a little more.”
Anybody who would like to help raise that total even further is welcome to take up the challenge themselves and donate money through a Just Giving page, “Girlguiding North Lonsdale Division 30 days of care challenge”.