Girlguiding UK Awards

The Queen’s Guide Award (QGA) is the highest award you can work towards in Guiding

In 2023 the new Queens Guide Award was launched.  Please download the following resource for details of transition to the new award
Transition to the new Queens Guide Award 2023


Current Award information – for those continuing with old award

It gives you the chance to develop your skills, whilst contributing to guiding and your local community at an impressive level. It is open to members aged 16 to 25 and must be completed within three years from the start date or before your 26th birthday, whichever is sooner.

The Queen’s Guide Award isn’t just a great achievement to share with other members of Girlguiding. Potential employers and further education institutions will also be impressed with your accomplishment, which shows you have challenged yourself and achieved significant goals across a range of different disciplines.

The programme can also be matched with activities you are already doing in guiding, meaning you can get more than one award for the challenges you are
taking on.

What does it entail?

The award is based on the concepts of personal challenge and participation and is split into five sections.

  • Service in guiding – take an active role in guiding at a range of levels.
  • Outdoor challenge – build your teamwork and leadership skills in a glorious outdoor setting. Where you go and what you do is up to you!
  • Personal skill development – start a new skill and develop it, or take an existing skill to a new level for a minimum of 60 hours over 12 months. A personal skill could be anything from ballet to circus skills, performing magic tricks to playing a musical instrument.
  • Community action – get more involved with the world around you and gain a greater understanding of it through practical and research projects of your choice.
  • Residential – spend two nights and three days away from home with new people.



Duke of Edinburgh

Duke of EdinburghThe Duke of Edinburgh’s Award is a nationally recognised programme of personal development

A DofE programme is a real adventure from beginning to end. It doesn’t matter who you are or where you’re from. You just need to be aged between 14 and 24 and be ready to enrich your life.


Impress potential employers and universities with an achievement they know and respect.

At each level you have to satisfy the requirements of four sections:

  • Volunteering – undertaking service to individuals or the community
  • Physical – improving in an area of sport, dance or fitness activities
  • Skills – developing practical and social skills and personal interests
  • Expedition – planning, training for and completing an adventurous journey in the UK or abroad

Gold programme participants must also do an additional fifth:

  • Residential – involves staying and working away from home doing a shared activity.

After you’ve successfully completed the Gold Award, you’ll get the invite of a lifetime: recipients go to one of the royal palaces to accept their award in the presence of its patron, the Duke of Edinburgh.

For more information visit the Girlguiding UK website or there is a great deal more on the Duke of Edinburgh website

For help and support contact the County DofE adviser at


Thanks BadgeThanks badge

  • The Thanks Badge can be either a brooch or lapel pin given to members and non-members of Girlguiding as a sign of appreciation for their support.
  • Any member of Girlguiding may present a Thanks Badge after discussion with a Leader or Commissioner.

The Thanks Badge may only be given to a member of the Trefoil Guild if they have given service specifically to Girlguiding.

Good service badgeGood service brooch

This brooch may be given to an adult member of Girlguiding or a Branch Association for excellent service to guiding. It can be awarded by:

  • the Chief Guide, for service to Girlguiding or a Branch Association
  • a Chief Commissioner, for service in a Country/Region (including British Guides in Foreign Countries)
  • a County Commissioner, for service in the County
  • the Commissioner for a Branch Association, for service in a Branch Association.

To be eligible for a Good Service brooch the nominee must fulfill one of these criteria:

  • hold a current member and recognised volunteer card
  • have completed a role no more than six months before the application is made.

The Good Service brooch is silver metal with blue and green enamel. It is accompanied by a certificate.

Long service badgeLong service awards

Any adult member who volunteers regularly, irrespective of role, gender or age, is eligible for a Long Service Award. Service is counted from the date someone becomes a member, aged 16 or over, and actively carries out a role for 5, 10, 20, 30, 40 or 50 years. Years of service don’t have to be consecutive.

The Long Service award brooches are all of similar design with different finishes and metals signifying the number of years. All the brooches are accompanied by a certificate:

  • 5-year certificate is signed by the County Commissioner
  • 10 and 20-year certificates are signed by the Country or Region Chief Commissioner
  • 30, 40 and 50-year certificates are signed by the Chief Guide.

Brooches may be worn on the badge tab or on non-guiding clothing.

It is the responsibility of the County Commissioner to establish when active members in her County are due to receive.

Members can also be nominated for the following discretionary awards:

Guiding starThe Guiding Star

The Guiding Star rewards bravery and determination in challenging situations

An award for any member of Girlguiding, up to her 26th birthday, who has displayed exceptional courage or who has shown great initiative or responsibility during an incident.

What are the award criteria?

The Guiding Star Award may be given for:

  • saving or helping to save a life
  • bravery and competence in facing an emergency situation
  • caring for a sick relative
  • showing courage and determination in guiding in the face of a serious or long-term medical condition
  • coping with exceptional circumstances in life.

If the award application is based on an incident or emergency situation, this must have occurred within the last six months.

More about the Guiding Star Award >

Laurel AwardThe Laurel Award

The Laurel award celebrates exceptional service. An award for active adult members of Girlguiding or one of the Branch Associations.

What are the award criteria?

  • Guiding experience – the member should have held a number and variety of roles within their District/Division/County or beyond. Within these roles the member should have demonstrated outstanding leadership skills and have been an effective team member.
  • Impact – the member should have made a significant contribution to supporting and developing guiding for both girls and adults.
  • Personal attributes – the member should be a person who is respected by their guiding peers, ‘stands out’ and has made a significant difference to guiding.

More about the Laurel Award >

Silver FishThe Silver Fish

The Silver Fish award recognises what a member has achieved across the breadth of Girlguiding.

The award is for an exceptional contribution to a wide section of Girlguiding, including international guiding either in the United Kingdom or abroad. This award may be given to an active adult member of Girlguiding or one of the Branch Associations.

Only a small number of these awards are granted.

What are the award criteria?

The application should reflect the nominee’s outstanding service, which must be of an exceptionally high standard.

  • Guiding experience – the member should have held a range of roles in guiding at District/Division/County levels and beyond. Within this range of roles the member should have demonstrated excellent leadership skills and made significant contributions as a team member.
  • Impact – the member should have made a significant contribution to supporting, motivating, nurturing and developing guiding for both girls and adults. This should be over a range of roles, both locally and internationally.
  • Personal attributes – the member should be outstanding and an exceptionally high achiever who is always ready to take on a challenge – someone who makes things happen, and who inspires and motivates people.
  • International – it’s not essential for the member to have travelled abroad. However, their work should demonstrate a major contribution to guiding in other countries, resulting in the strengthening of guiding relationships between countries.

More about the Silver Fish Award >


Girlguiding Hero Award

An award for members or friends of Girlguiding who have done something special.

Heroes can be of any age. They can be members or friends of Girlguiding. Reasons to give the Girlguiding Hero certificate are as wide as your imagination!

Examples could be:

A special fundraising effort/Supporting an individual or member of the community/Supporting local guiding/Showing fantastic citizenship/Coping with adversity

Any member of Girlguiding can nominate the person they think is a hero. Nomination Form available from :

HERO Nomination Form

Complete the form and send it to your County Commissioner

Once approved by the County Commissioner, arrangements will be made for a Hero Certificate to be sent out for presentation.

Back to the top