In 2019 the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts (WAGGGS) is hosting a leadership event which aims to reach over 100,000 young people.
In November 2019 WAGGGGS will completely change the way it hosts the Juliette Low Seminar (JLS), the organisation’s flagship leadership event. For the first time JLS will be held simultaneously in 20 different locations with 1000 participants.
The seminar began in 1932 as a way of promoting international friendship between Girl Guides and Girl Scouts from around the globe.
WAGGGS Innovation and Leadership Development Coordinator Elsa Cardona said just attending was a real adventure when it first began. It was held at Our Chalet in Switzerland, which was a long way for most girls to travel, so just getting to the venue was a feat of independence.
In recent years JLS became about leadership. It was a way for girls to learn the skills they needed to take back to their national Girl Guiding and Girl Scouting organisations. It was held mostly in English and rotated between the World Centres, usually only reach 60 girls at a time.
From 2019 it will be hosted once every three years, instead of twice every two years and offer spaces for 1000 young people. Each of the 1000 participants will deliver portions of the training to 100 more, meaning 100,000 young people should benefit.
This change was brought on by the World Board, a board of Trustees who govern WAGGGS. They wanted all events we run to reach greater numbers of people.
For 2019 WAGGGS will also extend the language options from the organisation’s four official languages of French, English, Spanish and Arabic, to include Swahili and Mandarin
It shouldn’t matter where you’re from, what language you speak. You should be able to access leadership training.
Innovation and leadership development coordinator Ayowunmi Nuga said this event would be a welcoming space for all young people.
“It shouldn’t matter where you’re from, what language you speak. You should be able to access leadership training.”
In December this year 80 facilitators will be trained at Kusifiri in Uganda. They will take the core of this training and adapt it for the context of each hub country.
Registrations are now open for all of the 150 WAGGGS membership countries. Applicants will apply to their national organisations. Selected participants will be divided between the hub locations.