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GirlGuiding New Zealand

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GirlGuiding New Zealand

GirlGuiding New Zealand
Māori Ngā Kōhine Whakamahiri o Aotearoa
Headquarters Christchurch
Country New Zealand
Founded 1908
Founder Lieutenant Colonel Cossgrove
Membership 20,562
Chief Guide Helen Gibbins
Affiliation World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts

GirlGuiding New Zealand (in New Zealand. GirlGuiding New Zealand currently splits New Zealand into 22 regions around the country with 20,562 members (as of 2003).

There are three main principles to Guiding, remembered by the trefoil and the three fingered salute. These are: Search for and acknowledge God or a higher being, a girl’s duty to her country through service and keeping the guide laws.[1]



Old emblem used in 2007-2008

From 1923 to 1968 the promise read:

On my honour I promise that I will do my best
To do my duty to God and the King/Queen
To help other people at all times
To obey the Guide Law

From 1923 to 1973 there were 10 laws and the motto was Be Prepared.

In 2007, this organisation changed its name from Guides New Zealand to GirlGuiding New Zealand.[5]

Girl Peace Scouts

The Girl Peace Scouts existed until amalgamation with the Girl Guides in 1923. The name, Girl Peace Scouts, applied to girls between 12 and 20.[6] Any girls who could afford the uniform were expected to wear a khaki blouse and skirt (coming below the knee), a leather belt around the waist with a knife plus a khaki hat with a brim. Good Turns were an important part of Peace Scouts. Girls always wore three pieces of ribbon tied in bows with the ends knotted to remind themselves to do good turns. The crest was in the shape of a fleur-de-lis with the motto, Be always ready, inscribed below.

The oath was carried out with a girl's left hand on her heart and the right in the standard three fingered salute while repeating:

On my honour I promise that
I will be loyal to God and the King,
I will try to help others at all times
I know the Scout Law and will obey it

At the time there were 9 Scout laws.

Fairy Peace Scouts

Fairy Peace Scouts were established for the younger sisters (aged from 7) of Peace Scouts in 1918.[2] The programme was based on Māori legends and the UK Brownie/Rosebud programme. The leader was called the 'Fairy Mistress' and waved a wand. The motto was Be true. The uniform was a white dress and a Peter Pan hat. Before being enrolled, girls had to prove they could lace their boots, tell the time and skip on both feet.[6] They then had to repeat the fourfold promise and the six laws:

  1. I must always speak the truth
  2. I must make myself useful to others
  3. I must be gentle and kind to everyone
  4. I must not make money for doing a good turn
  5. I must always smile and look pleasant
  6. (missing)



Pippins is for 5 and 6 year old girls. It offers an informal programme, designed to develop awareness of oneself, others and the environment.[8] The section started in 1983 in Southland, from 1984 throughout the country.[9] The name of 'Pippins' was given to this age group as the Apple and Pear Marketing board (now ENZA) initially sponsored them.[9] Also, when cut, an apple shows the Guiding Trefoil.


Pippins have no formal ceremonies or enrolments like the Brownies and Guides so they have no Promise or Law to memorise. They do have the Pippin saying for appropriate occasions: Pippins care, so Pippins share with other children everywhere.[10]


Pippins wear a pink t-shirt or polo shirt with the GirlGuidingNZ logo and a picture of the Pippin apple logo, navy pants or skirt, and a navy blue sash which can be worn over either shoulder.[11] This is for badges, which the girls can sew on as they choose.


Brownies is for girls between 7 and 9½ years old. Brownies meet in “packs” which are split into “sixes” of 4-6 girls in each. Each six has a leader and a second. Brownies cluster in a Brownie Ring, symbolising looking inwards towards family and friends and giving service around the home.[12] While in a Brownie Ring, Buzz Time is used to share ideas and make decisions.[1]


Brownies use the same promise and laws as the Guides. The Brownie mascot is a yellow sun with a smiling face to send out warm feelings to the girls [13]


Brownies wear a pink t-shirt or polo shirt similar to that of the Pippins, but with the Brownie Sun in the place of the Pippin Apple. The rest of the uniform remains unchanged.[14]


Guides is for girls between 9½ and 13½ years old.[1] Guides meet in “companies” or “units” which are split into “patrols” of 4-6 girls in each. Each patrol has a leader and a second, usually girls with more experience elected by her peers. Guides form a ‘horseshoe’ shape for ceremonies. This symbolises a service and awareness which is beginning to look wider than just the family and friends.[12]


I promise, with the help of my God, to be true to myself, to do my best to help my country, and to live by the Guide Law.[15]

  • NB: ‘God’ may be substituted for a more appropriate name depending on the Girl’s religion
  • The promise included doing duty to the Queen until very recently (the 1970 version of the promise included it)[16]

As a Guide, I will try to:

  • be honest and trustworthy
  • be friendly and cheerful
  • be a good team member
  • be responsible for what I say and do
  • respect and help other people
  • use my time and abilities wisely
  • face challenges and learn from experiences
  • and care for the environment[15]

The Guide motto is "Be Prepared"[2] The Guides mascot is a cartoon human girl called Gidget. Guides wear a navy and cornflower blue t-shirt, or cornflower blue polo shirt, navy pants or skirt, and a navy sash.[17]


Rangers are girls between ages 13½ and 19.[1] Rangers meet in “units” which are not divided into patrols, all girls work together to decide the programme. Rangers form a ‘V’ shape for ceremonies. This symbolises the girls being right in the community, offering service and friendship to all.[12]


The promise is the same as the Brownie and Guide with an attachment on the end for the further responsibility of being a Ranger:

to be of service to the community

The Guide laws are the same as the Guide.

A cartoon human girl named Woozle is the Rangers' Mascot who was introduced in 1984. The original Woozle went to help in Third World countries in 1995 and was replaced by a new species: Macwoozlefum zealandii.


Rangers wear a navy t-shirt or cornflower blue polo shirt and navy pants or shirt. Metal badges are displayed on a red badge tab and a red scarf is worn to distinguish Rangers from the other girls.[18] Rangers can design their own uniform for special activities e.g. camps, subject to approval.[1]

Ranger in Leadership (RILS)

A RIL is a Ranger in Leadership: a young woman who is training to become a leader, taking part in organising Pippin, Brownie or Guide programmes, under the supervision of the leader.[19] They were originally termed ‘Junior Leaders’ but this was changed in 1995.[20]


The Lone Peace Scouts originally started in 1923. The first member was Miss Nancy Borton of O Kaiawa, Hampden, Otago. In 1926, the Lones were split into two sections, the Post Guides for girls who were physically handicapped and were at home or in hospital (see below) and the Lone Branch for girls who live too far away. In 1934, the first Ranger and Brownie Lones were established.[2]


In 1929 the motto was established as: Solae Sed Sodales translating to: Lones but of a sisterhood[2]


The uniform is the same as their counterpart. Their promise badge used to contain an ‘L’ but this was dropped after the last re-vamp of the logo.

Red Shield Guides

These units (Pippins to Rangers) are affiliated to the Salvation Army. All practices are the same as regular Guiding units except the promise has the following added:

I promise not to drink alcoholic beverages, smoke or take harmful drugs, and to keep myself clean in thought and deed.

Other units


When there are too few girls for separate units, they are amalgamated into one unit. This unit will carry out activities adapted to suit all ages and still be relevant to the different sections.

Joint Guide/Scout

This is seen as a temporary measure only when there are too few leaders and/or children. Boys cannot become enrolled as Guides.

National Guiding Centres


Otimai is the first Guiding centre in New Zealand, donated as a training house by Mr and Mrs Wilson (the Chief Commissioner of the time) in 1927. Situated only 30 minutes from Auckland city centre, in Waitakere, it is controlled by the Auckland Region.[21] The name in Māori means 'welcome, come stay' and the motto is: faith, love and service. When first given, there was no electricity, running water or sewage system to the house but working bees and help from the community improved and extended the place with an official opening on 27 April 1928. ‘’Little Otimai’’ is a small cottage on the grounds, used for patrol leader trainings and Rangers. A ‘luncheon party’ was held for Robert and Olave Baden Powell on Thinking Day 1931 as part of their tour of the country. There is a chapel hidden in the woods of the grounds styled on a similar one at Foxlease in the UK.[2][22]

Trefoil Park

Trefoil Park is a section of land in a rural valley between Whangarei and Kaikohe was given to the Guide Association by an anonymous family in 1980. Much fundraising was carried out in the first couple of years to level the ground and build suitable accommodation on site. Gala day and concerts were held, plus the production of “Trefoil Treats”, a recipe book, sold 6,000 copies. 1982 saw many working bees to get the camp functioning and the ‘Camp of the Marsden Cross’ was held in January 1984 to open Trefoil Park. 200 Guides, 36 leaders and 20 Rangers attended the event which was opened by Joye Evans, Chief Commissioner of the time. The chapel at Trefoil Park is dedicated to Shirley Crawford (née Pearson) for her work in Guiding – 25.2.1995.[20]


Arahina is a national conference and training centre in Marton. Arahina means ‘to have been led’ in Māori. Owned from the mid-1950s until 2000 when it was bought by the Institute in Basic Life Principles from the Ministry of Defence.[23][24][16]

Cracroft House

Cracroft House is located in Christchurch. It was built in the 1860s and was given to the Guide Association in 1959 by Mr and Mrs Cracroft Wilson.[16] It has been red-stickered (no access) as a result of the 2011 Christchurch earthquake.[25] The Barn (located behind Cracroft House) is currently serving as the National Headquarters, as the National Offices were also damaged in the earthquake.

Kaitoke Lodge

Kaitoke Lodge was donated to Wellington Province for camps from Mr and Mrs John Hoggard in 1962.[26]

See also


  1. ^ a b c d e f A Guide to Guiding in New Zealand/He Aratohu mō te Kaupapa Whakamahiri i Aotearoa Guides New Zealand: Christchurch (2000)
  2. ^ a b c d e f Iles, Marie (1976) 65 Years of Guiding in New Zealand The Girl Guide Association New Zealand (inc): Christchurch
  3. ^ WAGGS website
  4. ^ Guides NZ - History
  5. ^ "Girl Guides Get New Look" (Press release). GirlGuiding New Zealand. 2007-11-05. Retrieved 2007-11-14. 
  6. ^ a b Guides NZ Website - About Us
  7. ^ Guides NZ Website - Guide Gear
  8. ^ Guides NZ Website - Pippins
  9. ^ a b The Girl Guides Association Southland Province, History of the Decade 75-85. Annual Report and Financial Statements Craig Printing Co. ltd.: Invercargill
  10. ^ Anne's Guiding Pages
  11. ^
  12. ^ a b c Hopkirk, M.A. (1965) Ceremonial for Girl Guides The Girl Guides Association of New Zealand (inc.): Christchurch
  13. ^ Guides NZ Website - Brownies
  14. ^
  15. ^ a b Promise and Law
  16. ^ a b c English, M. and Landels, C. (1970) A Handbook for Guides Girl Guides Association of New Zealand (inc.): Christchurch
  17. ^
  18. ^
  19. ^ The Pippin Leader’s Guide/Te Aratohū mo te Kaiārahi Poiki Guides New Zealand (2002)
  20. ^ a b West, D. (1995) The Story of Guiding in Northland: Celebrating 35 years as a province Calders Design and Print co.: Whangarei
  21. ^ Otimai Website
  22. ^ Burgin, A.M. (1977) The Story of Otimai 1927-1977 Auckland Girl Guides Association: Auckland
  23. ^
  24. ^ Institute in Basic Life Principles - History and Grounds
  25. ^
  26. ^ Wellington Province Girl Guides Golden Jubilee 1924-1974 Close and Manley Ltd.: Levin

External links

  • Girl Guiding New Zealand site
  • An Encyclopedia of New Zealand

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