Five Girlguiding volunteers from Girlguiding Lancashire East County received an unforgettable surprise when a group of girls and young women recognised them for their volunteering efforts. ​

The five women; Simone Cudworth, Lucy Hatherell, Kate Rippingale, Zoe Yates and Harriet Wibberley Smith (pictured with Julie Bell Region Chief Commissioner 3rd from left) have recently been named as ‘Guiding Idols’ in Girlguiding North West England – a campaign led by the regional charity to recognise its volunteers for their efforts.

Girlguiding North West England members were asked to nominate a Guiding Idol – a volunteer that they felt was an inspirational role model. Following the nominations, a youth panel of girls and young women, aged 5 to fourteen, were tasked with the difficult challenge of selecting nominees from each of the charity’s seventeen guiding counties.

The youth panel announced that they had selected volunteers from across the North West and that each Guiding Idol would be invited to attend a special celebration afternoon at Girlguiding North West England’s Region Headquarters in Preston hosted by Region Chief Commissioner Julie Bell. All 17 Counties in Girlguiding North West were represented, including volunteers from the Isle of Man. The event was themed around magic, as these volunteers really are the magic that fuels Girlguiding! All the volunteers were taught a magic trick to wow their friends and Girlguiding’s young members.

Lucy Hatherell (pictured 2nd from left), a Leader from Ribble Valley Division, who less than a year ago had a living donor kidney transplant, recognises the importance of the whole team.  She said, “I feel very proud to have won this award – not for myself, but for the whole team at 1st Waddington Rainbows, 1st West Bradford Guides and Clitheroe Senior Section. Sammy, Pat, Mo, Gina, Sharon and Sue you kept the units going when I had my kidney transplant and you kept me going too – thank you!”

For Zoe Yates (pictured 4th from left) it is all about the girls. She said, “What a treat to be rewarded for doing something I love. The real stars are the girls themselves and I am privileged to be part of making memories with them.”

If you have a couple of hours to give or want to volunteer on a regular basis, explore Girlguiding’s flexible opportunities at Guiding is active across the whole of the UK and in the North West of England we have 15000 inspirational volunteers who give their time where they can. We welcome volunteers from all backgrounds, ages, cultures, faiths and abilities.


Photo shows (left to right)

Simone Cudworth, Lucy Hatherell, Julie Bell (Region Chief Commissioner), Kate Rippingale, Zoe Yates and Harriet Wibberley Smith.