AN INSPIRATIONAL young woman from Hayling Island has risen to the challenge to achieve the highest award in Girlguiding.
Abiee Harris, 20, was presented with her Queen’s Guide Award at the House of Commons on Saturday, March 11, by Val Elliott, the Interim Chair of Girlguiding’s Board of Trustees.
Hannah Dines, Paralympic cyclist, currently placed fourth in the world in her class T2 trike, gave the recipients an inspirational talk.
Hannah who has cerebral palsy described the challenges she faced as she competed in the Paralympics in Rio and the success that drives her as she prepares for the Tokyo Olympics in 2020.
To achieve the prestigious award Abiee took on a series of personal challenges in areas such as social action, voluntary work and travel.
Fewer than 150 Girlguiding members are presented with the award each year and these have to be completed before they turn 26.
Abiee said: ‘I am most proud of how I have developed my character. It really helped me to develop not only my Guiding life but also my personal life. I gave speeches to people I never thought I could do; I worked hard to create a piece of research; I organised events which I would never have done before,and I planned an international trip.
‘The best part was that I absolutely loved it – at times I definitely wanted to give up, but I knew that I just needed to power through and it would all be fine - it was!’
Val Elliott, the Interim Chair of the Board of Trustees, added: ‘These inspirational young women should be incredibly proud of their achievements and I’m honoured to present them with their awards.
‘It was a privilege to hear about the challenges they all took on, from developing their skills by organising expeditions to taking positive action in their communities and further afield.
‘By achieving the Queen’s Guide Award they have shown what can be achieved through dedication and hard work. Congratulations to them all.’
Hannah Dines added: ‘It has been an honour to speak to these dedicated young women who have overcome a variety of challenges to complete their Queen’s Guide Award.
‘I would like to congratulate each of them on this significant achievement.’
Girlguiding was able to host this event thanks to support from players of People’s Postcode Lottery – which supports charities and good causes across Great Britain and globally.
For more information about the girlguides, visit girlguiding.org.uk.