Remarkable Women: Pat Goodheart

This Remarkable Woman of Girl Guides WA is Pat Goodheart. Here is Pat’s  story.Pat Goodheart

As a Mother of a potential Brownie on the waiting list, I started my Guiding career in 1965 as a Unit Helper with Ida Hetherington and the 1st Applecross Guides.   Ida was so enthusiastic and such a good mentor that it was not hard to keep going.  I went on to become Captain of 1st Applecross, Division Commissioner of Jandakot, a Member of the Executive Committee, Assistant State Commissioner and then in 1983 was elected State Commissioner.

From 1983 onwards, guiding became for me more than just an organisation in the local area, it became Worldwide as I represented Australia at the 75th Anniversary Celebrations , the Opening of the World Bureau in the UK and then was part of the Australian delegation at the World Conference in Kenya in 1987.

In 1989 I was appointed a member of the newly formed Pax Lodge Committee and remained there both as a member and then Chairman until 1999. Exciting, often frustrating but wonderful times as we saw the opening and growth of the World Centre in London.

I have been fortunate to have attended World Conferences in Kenya, Singapore, Denmark, Canada and Dublin all of which have enabled me to meet with so many Guides from all over the World.

During my term as State Commissioner in 1985 Guides WA shared a Birthday with the Princess Margaret Hospital for Children and we wanted to celebrate 75 years by giving them a Birthday gift.  We needed to come up with something different.  An administrator from the hospital had seen Radio Lollipop in the UK and it was mentioned as a possible link with the Girl Guides to raise funds to get it started.   I was also able to visit the Radio Lollipop Studio at Carshalton in Surrey to see it in action –  it was marvellous.

A Committee was formed with representatives from the Girl Guides and PMH and planning commenced.  The Guides pledged to raise $25,000 to enable it to get started, a tall order but we were determined.  Everyone had small money boxes and they were filling rapidly by extraordinary fund raising ventures.   The target was reached and exceeded and Radio Lollipop – the first one outside of the United Kingdom was launched right here in Perth on 3rd November 1985.

An excerpt from a local Community News 12.11.85 –

The World’s most Expensive Lollipop was delivered to a bank in West Perth last week.  It was a cheque for more than $35000 made out in the form of a giant lollipop.  The money had been raised by the Girl Guides in WA for Radio Lollipop, the new closed circuit radio station for the kids at Princess Margaret Hospital.

It was a wonderful achievement and gift from the Girl Guides.   It is still a favourite to this day and Radio Lollipop is most grateful for our ongoing support.  They are now in many other Countries but Perth was the first!

Nowadays I still keep in touch with my many guiding friends throughout the World, through Skype, Facebook and other mediums, a far cry from our Air Mail letters and Fax machines.   I am an Honorary Member of WAGGGS and Australia and a Life member of Guides Western Australia and Radio Lollipop and of course a member of Trefoil.

Thank goodness I was coerced into becoming a Unit helper all those years ago, I would have missed out on so much fun and lasting friendships and experiences that could never have been imagined.

Story supplied by Ann Miller.

Click below for more Remarkable Women:

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

What happens at JOTI/JOTA?

Have you got Jamboree envy in the shadow of the Great Bunya Gathering? Why not attend a different kind of Jamboree?

JOTA has been around forever, and JOTI has been around for years now! But some of us have never ventured to one before and may feel a little uncertain. So what exactly is it and how does it work? We asked the organisers what exactly happens and here’s what they said.

What is JOTA and JOTI?

Jamboree on the Air (ie on radio) and Jamboree on the Internet (online). This is a way to bring Girl Guides and Girl Scouts across the country and world together in one virtual place, and also train members in communication skills.

When and where is it?

Cambridge Guide & Scout Hall, Perry Lakes Reserve. 16-18 October, 2015.

How does it work on the day?

Everyone rocks up, we give an introduction and safety briefing, and then they move around different activities. They need to get all the activities in their passport ticked off so they can earn the Jota-Joti badge.  We have Scoutlink on the computers for moderated web chat with Girl Guides and Scouts around the world, chances to use the radios to talk with Girl Guides and Scouts in the hills, the eastern states, or overseas, and if we are lucky, a Skype chat with a world centre, or other Jota-Joti stations around the world.  Then there are all sorts of activities about communication, codes, international Guiding/Scouting and some of the technical aspects of amateur radio.

More info in the Event Sheets:

How much does it cost?

$7 per Guide ($2 for Adult’s badge)

How long does it last?jota times

We are running 2-3 hour sessions during the day. Otherwise, for 14+ members, come for the sleepover! Come whenever it suits you between 10am Saturday and 4pm Sunday- it doesn’t have to be for a particular session.

Who should come?

We’re targeting all ages, but have suggested some rough age groups for each of the different sessions, so that we can provide relevant activities.  Units just need to come with adults for their ratios (don’t need to be leaders, just police checked adults who are happy to help out)

What should I/we bring?

Organise your own (or your group’s) morning tea/afternoon tea/dinner (even if it is just telling everyone to pack a lunch).

All the activities and equipment are there, ready to go.

What’s this about a sleepover?

The other thing we are keen to do is get 14+ Guides and Olaves to come for the sleepover part, as it is the best time to get in touch with some of the other timezones. They don’t need to provide ratio, and we’ll organise dinner – they just need to bring sleeping gear with them!

How do I sign up?

Register with Hannah by October 9, 2015. Email: Call: 0421 965 840

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Remarkable women: Lorraine Pittaway

This Remarkable Woman of Girl Guides WA is Lorraine Pittaway. Here is Lorraine’s Lorraine Pittawaystory.

Lorraine Pittaway’s interest in guiding began when she made her Promise as a young Guide in the Shenton Park unit in 1952. Five years later she became a Lieutenant, having been tutored by Sylvia Perry.  The girls in her Unit had many exciting experiences. They were privileged to form a Guard of Honour with the Hollywood Guides for Lady Baden-Powell when she opened the Hollywood Guide Hall in 1957. A year later they marched down St George’s Terrace with Scouts and Navy and Army personnel when Queen Elizabeth II visited W.A.

When Lorraine moved with her family to the Cloverdale/Rivervale area she once more accepted leadership responsibilities. Under her guidance, the girls were very active and Lorraine introduced them to many camping adventures. She became the State Camping Equipment Officer and later the Heirisson Region’s Camping Adviser. They participated in many State events.

After retiring from her role as an active leader, Lorraine became a foundation member of the Bentley/Burswood Trefoil Guild and she has held the roles of Secretary, Treasurer and President.  Her sewing and craftwork skills are often in demand and have helped to produce many valuable items such as Gathering bags and Agnes Bear, the Trefoil Guild mascot for Guiding’s Centenary in 2010.

Lorraine continues to seek new challenges and she completed a certificate in the Dark Horse Venture, a Trefoil Guild initiative to commit oneself with learning new skills and accepting new experiences. In 1980 Lorraine was presented with the Wattle Award and in 2013 her 35 years of dedicated service to Guiding were recognised.

Story supplied by Ann Miller.

Click below for more Remarkable Women:

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Remarkable women: Dagmara Krasting

This Remarkable Woman of Girl Guides WA is Dagmara Krasting. Dagmara was a key person in a special Brownie tradition. Can you guess what it was?Dagmara Krasting

Dagmara was a Brownie Leader in her native Estonia before coming to Australia. After living through the outbreak of the Russian Revolution, the occupation of her country by German forces in 1914 to 1918, and its eventual separation from Russia she left her homeland to begin a new life elsewhere. She went first to France, then Britain and then Sydney (where she married Boris Krasting known as Mr Brown Owl to her Brownies).   Later she moved to Kalgoorlie, having had little contact with Guiding in that time.

To put in her own delightful idiom: “One day a lady came to my door and said ‘I believe you were a Guider in Europe’ How did she know?  They’ve got the best spy system in the world!”

Spy system or not, Guiding is international and Dagmara took the 3rd Brownie Pack from its beginning until its absorption in to the 4th Kalgoorlie Pack. She was also District Commissioner in 1952. Although her years in uniform were brief, her influence was tremendous, as her door was always open to Guides and Leaders for the whole time she was in Kalgoorlie, until her husband’s retirement.

She had an excellent relationship with the Aboriginal people, the tribal elders imparting many secrets not known to women. It was from them she learned the “not-so-secret’ name of the Aboriginal gnomes and fairies and she expressed the wish that they could be worn in Brownie Packs. That wish became a reality in the 4th Kalgoorlie Brownie Pack and was later adopted Australia wide.



Story taken from “Guiding on the Goldfields.”

Click below for more Remarkable Women:

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Remarkable women: Thea Brown

This Remarkable Woman of Girl Guides WA is Thea Brown. Find out what she had to Thea Brownwatch out for while Girl Guides swam in a lagoon!

The billy of water would not come to the boil – the fire was not yet hot. It had been allowed to burn low so that hot coals could be heaped over flat rocks. Now the damper had been removed from the rocks and eaten. It was time to climb back into the OKA, leave the rock pool with its pretty water lilies, and head back to the community. A resourceful Guide came to the rescue, throwing some tea leaves into the warm water.  They settled on top.  No worries. The Guide whipped off her skirt and strained the ‘tea’ into waiting mugs. We drank hurriedly before heading off over the rough Kimberley terrain after a bush tucker adventure with the Kalumburu Goorumba Guides.

Over the years in Guides, Rangers and later as a leader I learned many skills, so that I could be prepared for any eventuality.  My hardest ever challenge was to swim 50 yards – mother drove me to a heated pool the other side of Melbourne once a week for lessons. Test passed, I have never again swum that distance!   Nor put my head under water!  Just as well I have never been required to rescue anyone.

Challenges have been a constant part of Guiding. Throwing a rope over a branch 3 times my height, changing the sheets of a bed with a patient in it, and the Holger Nielson method of artificial respiration were mastered. From early Guide days I loved knotting, flags and ceremonial and compass and mapping. These eventually led me into orienteering and rogaining. As the Outdoors Activity co coordinator years ago it was my privilege to establish an orienteering course at Paxwold and introduce rogaining to our program.

Guiding has constantly thrown up challenges such as taking on a company as leader aged just 17, and many and varied appointments over the years. On a training and support trip through the Pilbara and Kimberley as Training Adviser I much admired the work and commitment of leaders in these remote areas. When asked if I would consider being RC for the Kimberley I readily accepted. There were long lonely drives in hire vehicles, flights to and from Kalumburu in tiny aircraft and heat and humidity to contend with. But oh – so many very special memories remain. Having moved out of a hot tent one night to sleep under the stars I was told next morning about king browns that sometimes slithered into a sleeping bag. On that camp I did crocodile watch while the girls swam in the lagoon. Setting an orienteering course at Barn Hill Station, I noticed a huge perentie  lurching along the track. Being the only vertical thing in sight in the red pindan scrublands I hurriedly changed direction.

Kalumburu Guides attended a Lone Guide camp at Paxwold

Kalumburu Guides attended a Lone Guide camp at Paxwold

The first Promise Ceremony at Kalumburu, under the stars on the banks of the King Edward River, followed by a campfire, will remain in my memory for ever.  A little lateral thinking solved the problem associated with another Promise Ceremony at Kalumburu – that of Leader Leonie’s Assistant Katie. Invited guests included SC Janis Wittber, at home in Murdoch. I conducted the unique and memorable ceremony by Teleconference from my lounge chair in Kalamunda.

‘Being Prepared’ did not prepare me for the  loud  BANG in a tiny aircraft bound for a remote Kimberley community.  A washing machine had slipped against the door which swung open. Luckily the two occupants and the crate of chooks did not fall out. There have been many highs and a few traumas to deal with, but for 60 years Guiding has been a way of life and a privilege.

Story supplied by Ann Miller.

Click below for more Remarkable Women:

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Remarkable women: Denise Pruim

This Remarkable Woman of Girl Guides WA is Denise Pruim. Find out why she has a Denise Pruimphoto hidden in her closet.

In 1981, Pat Goodheart showed us how to start up a Brownie and Guide Company in Kardinya.  Peggy Stacy was Brown Owl and Lesley Mullings was our Guide Leader.

We had only been going for three weeks and Sheila Lansbury invited us to go on camp with her guides – we had never pitched a tent or tied a knot, so, before we went, Kath Heath (Cookie) came around to show me the ropes. While we were on camp, Fiona Cahill made her Promise. It was a great time and Sheila deserved an award for taking us on!

I remember Margaret Kermode helping me with my camp training and we used to go to yoga classes together also.

After my husband had an accident, I left for a while, then, in 1991, Murdoch Trefoil Guild started up.  Shirley Suriano was President, Sue Mabbot was Secretary and Jan Reilly was Treasurer.

I also remember Tom Bradshaw taking us abseiling and the girls said “come on Nunkalowe, you have to do it too.”  I froze half way down and I thought I can’t stay here – couldn’t climb back up, so down I went!  I could have kissed the ground when I eventually made it.  There is a photo of me with a look of terror on my face, hidden in my cupboard for my closest friends and relations to see, but no one else!

Story supplied by Ann Miller.

Click below for more Remarkable Women:

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Remarkable women: Muriel Freeman

This Remarkable Woman of Girl Guides WA is Muriel Freeman. Here is her story.

Muriel Freeman was a well- known guiding identity in Albany as a Brownie Leader from the 1950’s, but she always remembered her early guiding days.

She was enrolled as a Bluebird in 1919 at a hill station not far from Madras in India. She was seven and a half and it was the first time that she had other children of her own age to play with. She loved the exciting but sometimes rather messy cooking afternoons when they produced scones or baked custard. These Brownie meetings were special to her and the girls learnt many outdoor skills.

Her uniform was a blue skirt and white blouse with blue bow at the neck worn with a large hard hat.  The Promise badge was a bluebird and they called their leader Mother Bluebird.

Muriel attended school at M.L.C. in Claremont two years later and recalled that her attempts to get a brownie or guide unit started there didn’t get a lot of support as were her later attempts to do so at school in England. However she assisted with guide companies in England during the war years whenever possible and finally opened her own Brownie unit in Albany in 1950.

Story supplied by Ann Miller.

Click below for more Remarkable Women:

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , | Leave a comment

Remarkable women: Jill Cook

This Remarkable Woman of Girl Guides WA is Jill Cook. Here is Jill’s story.Jill Cook

Jill Cook was a much loved and respected guiding identity in the Swan Valley area.  From the time that she became involved in guiding in 1977 until her death in 1992 she was the driving force in the Dianella District and then the Swan Valley Region.  Jill became the District Commissioner for North Dianella and established brownie and guide units there. These were followed fairly quickly by units in both Noranda and Ballajura.  Under her leadership as Region Commissioner for the Swan Valley, guiding flourished across the whole Region which extended out as far as Bullsbrook. Due to her untiring efforts, the purpose built North Dianella Guide/Scout Hall at the Light Street Recreation Ground became a reality during her time as Region Commissioner.

After leaving school Jill studied Home Science teaching at the Perth Technical College.  She taught at High Schools in Norseman, Bunbury and Tuart Hill before the family moved to Dianella in 1973.  She had resigned from teaching when her first daughter was born, but resumed when all three daughters were at school.  She recommenced her teaching career at Oberon, a Catholic School for girls who needed support.  She then taught at Girrawheen High School followed by Lockridge High School and it was here that she developed the very successful Lockridge High School Catering Enterprise Course.  This was a program designed to engage students who had no interest in attending school and to teach them life skills.

Jill’s Enterprise Course consisted of both boys and girls and they catered for local functions, including guiding events.  On these occasions the school group and the guides worked together and forward preparation was often done at Jill’s home.  A few of the local guides were in her Home Economics class, with some of them attending the Lockridge High School specifically to be able to participate in the Enterprise Group.  One of the girls subsequently did an apprenticeship with Miss Maud’s.

Jill was instrumental in establishing Work Studies as a TEE course.  She had envisioned an on-site Function Centre at the High School.  This became a reality when in August 1996 the Jill Cook Function Centre was opened and Jillie’s Restaurant began to operate. She always promoted Home Economics as a subject and encouraged other teachers to have faith in the ability of young people to achieve success through practical experiences.  The time and effort she spent for the students and the school were rewarded by the outstanding success of her Enterprise Course.

Jill was a member of the Girl Guides WA State Executive Committee and she also held the roles of Radio Activities Liaison Officer and Special Projects Adviser.  She was presented with the Wattle Award in 1987 and then the Emu Award in 1990.  The citation read:

“For total dedication to the Association in her position as Region Commissioner.  She is always ready to give of her time and assistance.”

Story supplied by Ann Miller.

Click below for more Remarkable Women:

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment

Remarkable women: Shirley Craigie

This Remarkable Woman of Girl Guides WA is Shirley Craigie. Find out why she Shirley Craigiegot sent home when she first tried to join Girl Guides.

I joined guides when I was ten and a half after being sent home at age ten because I was too young! I loved the hiking, camping and the camaraderie of guides. Meeting Lady B.P. after a service at St George’s Cathedral was a highlight.  Who could ever forget her beaming smile and the way she shook hands with both hands? I remember attending Djindunga, the International camp at Paxwold where we had a patrol of deaf guides which necessitated our learning sign language.

I became an assistant leader when my daughter’s unit was faced with closure due to lack of leaders. Over the years I helped on various committees including Water Activities, Arts, Brownie Section, Public Relations and State Executive and, after some years as a Brownie Leader, I accepted the role of District Leader. I also represented the Association on other organisations. One event I helped at was the Doll’s Show which was held at the W.A.C.A. Our Local Association dressed dozens of little dolls in various guide uniforms which were set into a camping display.  It was subsequently used during Children’s Week at the Burswood Dome. Unbeknown to us we had a visitor to our display – a mouse had made a nest in one of the boxes and we were left with the babies!

My greatest outside involvement was with the Department of Veterans’ Affairs in the year that we celebrated “Australia Remembers.”  I co-ordinated guides to march in the street parade, participate in the Anzac Day Ceremony and officiate at the Len Hall football game at Subiaco Oval.  The Guides’ association with the Len Hall game continued for many years.

Another service project which was a highlight was the Association’s involvement with the Emmanuel Centre. The sessions run by members of Girl Guides WA must be one of the Association’s longest running service projects.  It began in 1993 when a social worker from Emmanuel (a self-help day centre in East Perth for adults with intellectual disabilities) approached Girl Guides W.A. wondering if we could help with their program.  After discussion, permission was given for us to modify some Brownie Challenge Badges to meet the capabilities of the Emmanuel people.  Marion Nairn, State Commissioner at the time, asked Cheryl Murray to co-ordinate the program and I consented to help Cheryl with the project.

We thought we would be needed for a week or two. Twenty two years later, and with the help of many leaders and ex-leaders during that time, the program is still active.  At first many hours were spent teaching and assessing the modified badges and we regularly held badge presentations.  As the needs of the Emmanuel people changed, our programs moved away from badges towards general challenges and activities.  Safety in daily life as well as healthy living and eating were important and were topics which were regularly revisited.  In some years the participants presented a concert to visitors and Emmanuel staff.  Anzac Day, Christmas, Easter and Remembrance Day have also featured in our programs.  As the years passed the number of participants have dwindled and numbers are now lower than they were in the early years.  There have been many guiding people who have come along to either run or help with sessions, and I consider myself fortunate to have been involved from the beginning.  Our greatest gifts to the Emmanuel people have been our time and understanding and their precious gift to us has been their friendship.

Story supplied by Ann Miller.

Click below for more Remarkable Women:

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , | 1 Comment

Remarkable Women: Jan Rose

This post’s Remarkable Women of Girl Guides WA is Jan Rose. Here is her story.

Jan Rose

Jan Rose

Jan’s early Guiding years were spent in Cobar in Western New South Wales.  She remembers passing her Tenderfoot Test and camping on the property of the Region Commissioner. Unfortunately due to the lack of a leader, the group closed soon afterwards.

It was forty years later when Jan and her husband settled in Kalgoorlie after living in many different places, that Jan was reintroduced to Guiding. She accepted the position of Region Commissioner for the Goldfields Region, an appointment she held for five years.  During this time Jan actively promoted guiding in the goldfields while supporting the units in her care. This included travelling to Kambalda weekly to help run a Brownie Pack.

After moving to Perth, Jan was appointed as an assistant to the State Commissioner, Janet Garcia Webb. During these years she took on various roles, including liaison to the Scout Association, member of the Fundraising Committee  and chair of the Program Committee. She was also the QM (cook) for two Jamborees.

At the completion of her term as Assistant State Commissioner Jan received the Emu award and joined the W.A. Women of Distinction group. She then became the State Trefoil Guild Adviser and chaired the planning committee for the 18th National Trefoil Gathering which was held in Perth in 2008.

Jan has a diverse background in community work and has headed and worked on different committees in Australia and overseas. She is currently a member of the Honorary Australian Associates and the Burswood/Bentley Trefoil Guild.

Story by Ann Miller.

Click below for more Remarkable Women:

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments