Blog / December 13th, 2021

County Spotlight Blog: Suffolk

Suffolk County

Welcome to our blog for December to celebrate the final month of Anglia’s 50th year.

The County of Girlguiding Suffolk is largely rural, with a large coastline & the 3 main conurbations of Ipswich, the County town in the South, Felixstowe & it’s container port, on the South East coast & Bury St Edmunds towards the North.

In January we welcomed Katherine as our new County Commissioner. We wish her well, as she steers us on our continuing guiding journey through the pandemic, & beyond.

As a County we have continued to “SHOUT OUT” about Guiding & everything we do, in local Parish magazines, regional newspapers & “Family Suffolk” magazine,  & been interviewed on BBC Radio Suffolk. We have also collaborated with Volunteer Suffolk, to share many of our guiding volunteer vacancies on their website.  We are currently updating The Song video, generously rewritten for Girlguiding Suffolk, by ABBA in 2016, & during December hope to share a picture a day on our public Facebook page, as a Girlguiding Suffolk Advent Calendar of Activities.

During 2021 all our sections have offered blended guiding, digital, outdoors or indoors, according to the lockdown status at the time, & the attributes of each leadership team.  We have all had to adapt, & challenge the way we do guiding.

Here are a few details of what some of our sections have been up to in 2021:-

The 3rd Britannia Rainbows (Ipswich) had Adventures at Home with Craft bags left on their doorsteps and followed the Girlguiding programme with the PDFs of UMAs and Skill Builders sent to their parents by email.  Once they were able to meet face to face outside, they visited their local recreation ground for craft, games and exploration. They also held a Promise and Over the Rainbow Ceremony at the 400 year old Oak tree in Orwell Country Park.

Babergh & Samford District held a Brownie Pack Holiday over the August Bank Holiday weekend, taking part in canoeing, high wires, craft & games.

29th Ipswich Guides celebrated their 90th birthday in March this year with a zoom party. Party bags were sent out to all Guides, with special 90th Birthday buns and mug painting kits. They also enjoyed walking around Ravenswood and Orwell Country Park, taking part in nature activities and a Penny Hike.

Cavendish (Ipswich) Rainbows, Brownies and Guides celebrated British Science week on zoom taking part in coding necklaces, creating rainbows, building towers and designing foil boats.

1st Martlesham Heath Rangers enjoyed meetings on Zoom throughout the lockdowns, plus outdoor face to face meetings when permitted, covering many programme activities.  They are looking forward to Carols in the Square in December, their annual fundraising event, with a “covid-safe” difference this year, & their first Gold Award presentation.

Ipswich Division leaders enjoyed an evening camp-fire at Hallowtree Scout & Guide Site and Cavendish Guiders enjoyed a weekend camp at Hallowtree with Brownies and Guides visiting each day, completing badges, skills builders and UMAs.

Across the county there was lots of support for Thinking Day in February, Parliament week & acts of Remembrance in November, either digitally or face to face outdoors or indoors.

We are mostly all back guiding face to face, embracing the hybrid way of doing things and looking forward to rebuilding next year and have exciting recruitment plans for 2022.

Wishing all our guiding friends across the Region, a peaceful & safe Festive season & that 2022 proves a little kinder to us all.