Australian Guide Program
The Australian Guide Program is based on shared leadership and decision-making at all ages. Girls plan and participate in activities facilitated by a Leader.
The aim of the Australian Guide Program is to facilitate a broad program that recognises participation, effort, achievement, ability and service (by individuals and groups), which is not competitive. Girls initiate involvement, and self-development and self-confidence are facilitated in a cooperative environment.
Program and Method
The Australian Guide Program is a values-based, leadership and life skills program with an outdoors focus.
It involves Guides and Leaders working together to carry out challenges and activities based on the four elements and seven fundamentals of the Australian Guide Program.
Girls grow into confident, self-respecting, responsible community members through challenges, recognition, fun and friendship.
Elements of the Australian Guide Program
The Australian Guide Program encourages the girl to develop her self in the areas of physical development, practical skills, and in relationships with people.
- Physical – participating actively; focussing on the environment and the outdoors.
- People – making friends and developing long-lasting friendships, developing an understanding and respect for others.
- Practical – learning by doing; learning everyday living skills that can be integrated in all areas of life.
- Self – development and appreciation of the individual; gaining personal growth through challenges the girl as an individual.
Fundamentals of the Australian Guide Program
The seven fundamental areas of Guiding form the basis of the Program upon which Unit meetings are developed and implemented.
- keeping the Promise and Law is our underlying code of living.
- enjoying the outdoors offers active adventure and awareness of the environment.
- giving service encourages a sense of community.
- exploring world Guiding builds peace and understanding.
- sharing in Guiding traditions gives a sense of history and belonging.
- experiencing leadership development improves skills for life.
- participating in the Patrol System develops teamwork skills.
The philosophy of the Program is based on the importance of the process used in working towards an outcome, rather than on the activity itself. When Guides plan their own Unit meetings, they gain confidence in choosing to suit their needs and learn the importance skills of self-determination.
Girl Guide/Girl Scout Method
The Australian Guide Program follows the Girl Guide/Girl Scout Method of the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts. This unique approach combines the use of different educational tools in order to achieve the educational aim of Girl Guiding/Girl Scouting; to contribute to the development of the full potential and a harmonised personal identity of each individual. The Girl Guide Method is defined as by the World Association of Girl Guide and Girl Scouts as (Verhoeven, 2014)
- Learning in small groups to support each other, negotiate, make democratic decisions, assert our needs, solve problems together, take the lead
- At the pace and through a pathway that is determined by the girl to respect individuals, make our own choices, learn in the best way for us, value our achievements, collaborate not compete, be confident
- Learning by doing to take on challenges, learn through experience, take risks, make mistakes, get involved, pay attention
- Connecting with others to value others, appreciate diversity, listen, connect, make a difference, develop empathy, communicate
- Connecting with the world to be active citizens, get our hands dirty, enjoy the outdoors, get involved in our community, speak out for change, pay attention to the wider world
Recognition of Achievement
Guides can attain the peak achievement award, the Queen’s Guide Award. Complementary awards for younger girls are also available.
Each girl who works towards an award is recognised at the level of her abilities. Recognition may be by the girl herself, other members of the Unit or by the girl through discussion with her Leader.
A range of interest achievements is available for girls to challenge themselves as individuals or as part of a group.
Where appropriate, qualifications for youth and adult members of Girl Guides Australia are linked to nationally accredited industry based training packages.
Ceremonies bring a sense of belonging and their use is encouraged. Units may create their own ceremonies and traditions.
Promise ceremonies and award ceremonies
A girl decides in consultation with her Leader when she will make or renew her Guide Promise.
An adult who has made her Guide Promise as a youth member is encouraged to renew it an appropriate time.
Any adult member of a State Girl Guide Organisation who has made the Guide Promise may conduct a Promise ceremony or award ceremony.
Flays may be carried and used in ceremonies. When used they should progress in the following order:
- the Australian National Flag
- a State flag
- the recognised flag of a country
- the World Flag
- a Unit’s flag – the World Flag inscribed with the name of the Unit;
- a Unit’s flag or pennant (not used in formal ceremonies); and
- the respective Australian, State or local standard which may accompany the Chief Commissioner, the State Commissioner or the Region Manager.
When the flags are placed in a stand or flown from poles, the Australian flag is always on the left (as you face them) of the World Flag.
A Standard is a large tapering flag. In Guiding, as Standard signifies an official position such as Chief Commissioner or State Commissioner. Standards are used at functions where the person whose position it signifies is present. The protocol for carrying Standards is available from State Guide offices.
The Guide Sign
The Guide Sign may be used on the following occasions by all members who have made the Promise:
- at a Promise ceremony, an award ceremony or Promise renewal;
- during the playing or singing of the National Anthem when in uniform at a Guide or Scout event except if the event is in a church: or
- when colours are brought on, taken off, broken or lowered with ceremony at a Guide or Scout function.
- The Guide Sign is not used in a church service even for a Guide or Scout event.
A Guides’ Own is a time of reflection acceptable to all faiths. It is planned and conducted by Guides of any age.
Indoor Overnight Stay or Sleepover
For an indoor overnight stay or sleepover with reference to the Guide Lines:
- An overnight stay or sleepover must be held indoors and is when a Unit extends their program activity overnight, making use of an indoor Guide approved venues. If any part of the overnight stay or sleepover takes places outdoors then this is classed as an outdoor camp. The Leader in charge of this activity must have the relevant camping module.
- A qualified Leader must be in attendance at all times and prior notification of the activity must be given to the District Manager.
- Activity Consent forms must be completed prior to the event or activity.
- The duration of the overnight stay or sleepover must be less than 24 hours.
For Adult to Girl ratios, refer to Ratios at a Glance.
Last Modified: 02/10/21 at 10:31 PM