That’s right, Rathdowney Girl Guide Units – Ladybirds, Brownies, Guides, Young Leaders and Leaders – are celebrating 30 years in our community.
In that time hundreds of local girls have sang, camped, cooked and laughed. You might have seen them planting flowers for Tidy Towns or singing carols in Cuan Bhrid or even (if you’re old enough) seen them marching in Rathdowney’s St. Patrick’s Day parade. For 30 years Girl Guides has been a place for girls, from 5 to 150, to learn and grow in confidence and reach their fullest potential.
To celebrate they held “A Gang Show” or a Variety Concert, on April 26th, all 100 girls form Rathdowney Guiding and our friends from Borris in Ossory and Birr performed.
The Community Centre was full to capacity with parents, representative from regional and national Irish Girl Guide Offices, namely Maureen Dillon, National President, Pauline Kennedy, Regional Commissioner and Margaret Corr Regional Development Officer.
Guiding was started in 1984 by Gina O Loughlin when she noticed the lack of clubs/activities for girls in the town. Thanks to the leaders both present and past who give their time voluntary there has never been a year when the units were not active. Currently over 80 girls and 20 adult leaders meet in The Marian Centre weekly, representing Rathdowney, Galmoy, Errill, Clough and Ballacolla.
Irish Girl Guides is modern, relevant, worthwhile and inspiring and helps girls and Leaders develop confidence. The organisation was founded in 1911 and the things we have valued since than are respect, confidence, leadership, honesty, friendship, fun, education, independence, social awareness and community engagement.