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Autumn Awards 2023


Sharon Moore is an exceptional Unit Helper working with 1st Oakdale Rainbows.  It is her ability to be patient, caring and kind to both young members and volunteers and her air of calm which truly sets her apart.  The rainbows in her unit describe her as ‘really kind’, ‘looks after me when I get upset’ and ‘even though I’m now a guide she always remembers to ask me how I’m doing’.  Sharon takes an active part in the planning and implementation of activities.  In addition, she also undertakes the role of treasurer for the unit as well as that of District and Division Treasurer not only overseeing the accounts but also identifying issues regarding insurances and finding solutions.  Sharon is definitely one of those people who goes about her guiding roles quietly and efficiently ensuring that guiding within her Poole East Division runs smoothly and thoroughly deserves a Dorset Ammonite Award.

Gill Clarke is a resilient, hugely capable and dynamic leader who is a champion for girls and younger members.  She is a favourite with the girls, a ‘whizz’ at recruiting volunteers, passionate about developing young leaders and ensures that Girlguiding continues to develop progressively.  Gill restarted the Colehill guide unit, building a team of volunteers to reduce the burden on any one individual.  Gill has a can-do attitude, is respectful to guiding tradition and innovates exciting experiences for the young members.  Parents and girls say that Gill ‘ran outstanding online sessions during the pandemic’, ‘brings out the best in all the girls’ and ‘made sure I could still go to guides even when my mum couldn’t afford it’.  Volunteers and helpers say ‘Gill always remembers to say thank you’ and ‘always makes us feel valued and appreciated’.  Gill is recognised for her outstanding service to local guiding and for keeping her promise to serve her community and thoroughly deserves a Dorset Ammonite Award.

Debbie Boyer is an exceptional leader within the 2nd Broadwindsor Brownie Unit as well as treasurer and administrative roles within several units and her division.  In addition to preparing the Division accounts and dealing with grant applications, Debbie is always available to answer finance questions across the division including guidance on budgeting, gift aid and grant applications.  Debbie also manages the Division Trading Depot.  Since 2021 Debbie has undertaken the role of Assistant Division Commissioner.  Everything that Debbie takes on she does so with full commitment and unreserved energy.  Her attention to detail and organisational skills are second to none.  All of her roles she does to a very high standard, even when travelling abroad for work.  Debbie has truly kept her promise to help her community and do her best and thoroughly deserves a Dorset Ammonite Award.

Chris Thornton is recognised for the huge support she gives behind the scenes to ensure that grass roots Girlguiding in Dorset receives the support it needs.  She has been the county treasurer for over 13 years ensuring the units within the county receive the financial support needed.  Chris extends those financial skills at a local level within her own division and has held many roles within the county which underpin local girlguiding and is always both willing and able to mentor and encourage less experienced leaders to maintain a guiding experience for all those within the county.  At a local level Chris has worked extensively at unit level across all sections, is currently supporting Poole West and uses her experience to support the selection of young people for international opportunities (INTOPS).  Chris exemplifies the girlguiding promise to serve her community and help other people and thoroughly deserves a Dorset Ammonite Award.

Alison Markwick is recognised for her work with 1st Highcliffe Rainbows and the links she has built between girlguiding and the community.  Alison’s rainbows say that she is ‘funny, kind, patient and helpful’, that she is a ‘good teacher’ and ‘explains everything’.  They add that she helps them ‘earn lots of badges and even gold awards’ and even ‘helped when I had a fork stuck in my throat’! She will always take time to help rainbows who are struggling or need a little more support to thrive. 

She encourages and supports her peer leaders as well as helping to manage the guide hall and stores.  Alison works hard to include girlguiding within the community including gang shows and running stalls at the local fireworks display and with the Royal British Legion.  Alison continues to keep her promise to support her community and thoroughly deserves a Dorset Ammonite Award.

Teresa Fisher is recognised for her support of leaders across her division of Bournemouth North and for her work with brownies, guides and rangers.  She encourages new volunteers to take on smaller roles in supportive environments to build their confidence and will then encourage them to challenge themselves with new and additional roles.  Teresa supports younger leaders within the organisation even continuing to keep up that support when they leave for university.  Her peers describe her as ‘super-organised’, ‘incredibly enthusiastic’, a ‘hard-working superstar’ and even a ‘force of nature’!  They describe Teresa as having ‘a passion and dedication to improving girls lives’.  Teresa has truly kept her girlguiding promise to help other people and thoroughly deserves a Dorset Ammonite Award.

Jane Lockett is an assistant leader with 2nd Mudeford brownies.  Jane has excellent skills with the brownies especially when teaching them a new skill or craft which means all the girls feel included.  She also excels at teaching the brownies to sing.  Her peer leaders also recognise the support and assistance she has given to both experienced leaders and those just starting out.  She offers experience and expertise where needed and is always ready to go on adventures with the girls.  Jane also undertakes the admin and finance roles within her unit to great effect as well as taking an active and proactive role in maintaining and running the guide hall.   Jane has truly upheld her promise to help other people and thoroughly deserves a Dorset Ammonite Award.

Janet Roberts is a leader with 2nd Mudeford brownies and is recognised for her extensive work within her unit.  She encourages a wide range of activities within the programme as well as getting out and about on adventures.  Janet is very committed to giving her unit the best possible experiences and always has a positive attitude to all new challenges.  She has utilised her links to an elephant sanctuary in Zambia to encourage the brownies to support both animals and think about the wider world.  Janet is also actively involved in the running and maintenance of the guide hall and forging links within the local community.  Janet has undoubtedly kept her promise to serve her community and thoroughly deserves a Dorset Ammonite Award.

Catherine Welch – Catherine is a very dedicated member of Girlguiding and has held many roles in which she is supportive, a mentor and a trainer.  In addition to her guiding roles, she worked during the pandemic in Intensive Care in her role as a doctor in addition to supporting the vaccination rollout.  In addition, she has utilised her medical skills during the war in Ukraine and in response to Turkey’s earthquake emergency as well as attending guide camp and volunteering for the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee celebrations.  Catherine is a worthy recipient of the Hero Award.

Benny Gauler –Benny has helped so many people in Bournemouth North with setting up accounts for new units, assist8ing with gift aid, end of year accounts, changing bank details and completing acco0unts for closing units. She has been the Division Treasurer for many years, giving advice on how much to charge participants going on day events or longer holidays. If you are a person who struggles to work with figures Benny is a HERO whilst always showing great patience, kindness and understanding. Many things have changed within Girlguiding, including keeping accounts, and Benny has adopted all of these with enthusiasm willingly helping everyone to understand the new systems. The dictionary definition of a HERO “is a person greatly admired for exceptional qualities and achievement”. For Bournemouth North Guides she definitely has these and Benny is recognised with a Hero Award.

Emma House is recognised with a Dorset Gentian Award for her work to promote the recruitment and retention of both volunteers and girls as Girlguiding Dorset’s Growth Membership Coordinator.  In addition to her roles as a rainbow, brownie, guide and ranger leader, Emma took on the division role of Dorset West Outdoor Activities Advisor to promote adventure to the young member and volunteers. In  2021 Emma accepted the role as county Growth Membership Coordinator which she does with incredible enthusiasm.  During the last two years Emma

has tirelessly ensured that Girlguiding is promoted at events such as the Dorchester Christmas Cracker event, Bournemouth University volunteer weeks, the Gillingham and Shaftesbury show, Jurassic Fields, celebrating the Queen’s Canopy and platinum jubilee, Bournemouth Half Marathon and has even been interviewed to promote Girlguiding on BBC Sounds on the Steve Harris show. Tailoring resources for county wide use, Emma promotes the inclusive and flexible aspects of Girlguiding. If leaders find it challenging to download, change or access these resources, Emma is always quick to offer to help, advise and support. Emma is passionate in supporting the promotion of awards for volunteers as well as promoting the celebration of gold awards received by younger members. More recently, Emma has guided the county through the re-branding of Girlguiding, producing new artwork for us to share on our outside world social media platforms. She is always ready to try new ideas and is never afraid to approach local businesses for support. Emma is without doubt a worthwhile recipient of the Dorset Gentian Brooch in recognition and acknowledgement of valued service in the promotion and/or support of guiding within and beyond Dorset. She has also truly kept her guiding promise to serve her community and help other people.


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