A Girlguides leader from Haverhill has become one of less then 200 members of the organisation to have received its highest award this year.
Sarah Sprigg received the Queen’s Guide Award from Chief Guide Gill Slocombe and the Guinness World Record-holder Sally Kettle, who has twice rowed the Atlantic Ocean, at the House of Commons last week.
Sarah, 24, took three years to complete the award, a personal collection of challenges which must be completed before you are 26.
A Leader with 4th Haverhill Brownies and 1st Kedington Rangers and an Administrator at Anglia Ruskin University, Sarah selected personal challenges in fields including volunteering, social action, developing new skills and travelling to a new place.
Her challenges included organising an exploration to visit all of the locations on the Edinburgh Monopoly board, volunteering with the Anglia Ruskin University buddy scheme and brushing up on her cake decorating skills.
Sarah said: “I’m proud that I am the first person in my area to gain the award in a long time.
“As part of the challenge I became a mentor for a local Girlguiding volunteer who was taking her Brownies away for the first time – and really enjoyed volunteering for the Girlguiding World Conference in Edinburgh which was amazing, it gave me a real feeling of being part of an international movement.
“It was hard work and long days but it gave me memories and friendships that will last a lifetime.
“During my summer break of university I was also staff at an American Girl Scout summer camp taking up the role of art and craft specialist learning about Girl Scouts and their movement.
“Completing the Award is one of my proudest moments - especially whilst doing it alongside work and my degree.”
Girlguiding’s Chief Guide Gill Slocombe said: “It’s been fantastic to meet the Queen’s Guides.
“I’m proud of these inspirational young women who have achieved the Queen’s Guide Award by setting themselves incredible challenges and taking positive action in their communities.
“They are our next inspiring female role models who have proved they are a force for good.”
Sally Kettle said: “It’s a great pleasure to meet the young women who have given so much time and commitment to complete their Queen’s Guide Award.
“It takes a huge amount of courage, as every element of the Award pushes these young women to test themselves and to try something new and different.
“It’s testament to their resilience and hard work that the Queen’s Guides will be receiving their Award at the Houses of Parliament.
“I’m extremely proud of them, and I hope they realise what fantastic role models they are to everyone they meet.”
For more information about how to get involved with Girlguiding, the leading charity for girls and young women in the UK, visit www.girlguiding.org.uk.