I wanted to keep this simple, but make sure each Brownie-to-be knew what each part of the Promise means. A lot of our newest recruits were Rainbows so knew what to say (with that little bit extra) but the main thing with the promise was understanding what each part means.
I have to stress to every single girl taking part in this, Brownies is NOT a religious organisation. You are finding the promise and seeing how you can apply it to what you do, and then remember what you’ve done when saying the promise. It seemed to help. Apart from the girl who said she has no beliefs, doesn’t help anyone and doesn’t do much. But we got there in the end.
I copied the text from the GirlGuiding website with each section of the promise, then created text boxes for the girls to write things they had done for each part of the promise. I couldn’t find anything like this online (which was surprising) and it helped the girls understand exactly what they were promising. It can probably be adapted even better, so I won’t upload my sheets just yet.
We sat in sixes, and wrote something we had done our best with. That was fairly easy.
Then we thought about beliefs. A lot of our Brownies attend church schools, so said god or jesus which was easy for them. However, a lot of other girls said they don’t believe in god. I pointed out that I wrote that I’ve been a vegetarian for over 30 years, and that I believe I shouldn’t eat animals. We chatted about things they believe in, and they worked it out from there. Unicorns, apparently.
After that, a surprising number of girls didn’t know what a community was. But we talked about attending church parade, helping or visiting their school fair, or even just attending the local carnival. They got a few ideas from that which opened up their idea of what a community is.
None of them knew why we say we’ll serve the Queen. They didn’t know she used to be a Brownie… (obviously they haven’t been reading their Adventure Book ;-)) but they found that interesting which was good.
Then it was covering the Brownie Guide Law – ‘A Brownie Guide thinks of others before herself and does a good turn every day’ – so we thought about when we’ve done that. The girl I mentioned above struggled. I said “well, do you make your bed very often?” “no, I make it every day” she replied. VOILA! That’ll do nicely.
So I was hoping that when they said the following, this is what they’re thinking…
I promise that I will do my best, (I will listen to other people when they speak)
to be true to myself and develop my beliefs, (I believe in unicorns)
to serve the Queen and my community, (I spent lots of money at the school fair)
to help other people and to keep the Brownie Guide Law. (I make my bed every day)
Put like that it’s pretty easy to slot the Brownie Promise into everyday life, especially when you’re starting your GirlGuiding journey, I reckon.