Minivate! for the Senior Section Centenary

Minivate 2014 logo

Call me old-fashioned, but I love getting post. Especially Guiding-related post. The other day, I received a very special delivery, reminding me of how I completed the residential section of my Queen’s Guide Award. At the end of July (so, I am very delayed in writing this post, but sometimes life takes over!) I joined with other Midlands Senior Section members at a Minivate! weekend, staying in the beautiful Manor House at the lovely Blackwell Adventure. Having never done anything like this before, I had no expectations whatsoever of the weekend. We had gathered to plan ways to mark the Senior Section Centenary in the Midlands Region in 2016.

Blackwell Court Manor House
The beautiful Blackwell Court Manor House, our base for the Minivate! weekend

The weekend started with a look at why we should bother to celebrate. In recent years, there seems to have been no end of Guiding celebrations, from the Brownie Birthday and Girlguiding Centenary to other, more local celebrations. So, do we want to create another headache for Leaders? But, actually, we were all agreed that the Senior Section is a really vital part of the Girlguiding movement and one that is, unfortunately, often overlooked. I myself had no idea that Rangers still existed, and Senior Section members who are pat of unit leadership teams are often isolated from their peers. So, what better way to unite Senior Section members from all around the region and promote the Senior Section more widely than to celebrate the fantastic achievement that is 100 years?

When we arrived at the Minivate! weekend, nothing at all had been decided yet, so there was a great sense of empowerment that we were right at the beginning of the journey to the 100 year celebrations.  What a privilege to be involved right from the start! Many, many sheets of flip paper and brain hours later, we had decided on 5 key events to take forward to the next stages. I’m not going to spoil the surprises, but let’s just say it will be a celebration to remember.

Amongst all the hard work, we also had time to enjoy some of the activities on offer – the 3G swing (in and around a pretty big storm), crate-stacking and the zip wire. There was a murder committed Saturday evening as we enjoyed a murder mystery dinner and the weekend was topped off by a pool party and barbecue on the Sunday.

So, back to that piece of post. At the end of the weekend, we were all encouraged to write down the responsibilities we had taken on and how we would promote the Senior Section back in our local areas. Thanks to Rachel,  these were all sent back to us as a prompt. I am now heading up a working group to organise a special event for the Centenary, thanks to the opportunities at Minivate! In doing this, I will also fulfil the Service in Guiding, Element 4 section of the Queen’s Guide Award. There’s a lot of work to do before 2016, but there are some fantastic events coming up and I am so excited to be a part of that. Watch this space!


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