Our History

‘Girl Guides have a unique distinction in that they founded themselves.’

–Robert Baden-Powell.

At the first Boy Scout Rally held in London in 1909 Robert Baden-Powell, the founder of the Boy Scouts, was surprised by a number of girls who insisted they wanted to be Girl Scouts. He agreed that something was needed for the girls and in 1910 the Girl Guides Association was formed. From as early as 1909 girls in Australia were forming guiding groups and by 1920 Girl Guide Associations had been formed in six states. In 1926 the State Associations federated and formed a national organisation. Over a million Australian women have been or are still Girl Guides.

Girl Guides started in WA in 1915 and today has over 2,600 members. It began with a public meeting in the Perth Town Hall, on 28 June 1915. Interested girls were invited to the home of Mrs Osborne Wilson in Angove St, North Perth. According to records, girls flocked to Mrs Wilson’s home and were found all over the house, tying knots with pieces of string and other Girl Guide activities. The first group commenced shortly after as 1st Swan Company. The girls were divided into three Patrols and for a while nine Jewish girls attended. This initial Company changed its name over time to 1st Perth Pioneer and 1st Perth. It is said that these first Girl Guides were very energetic and dedicated, and carried out many of their activities in Kings Park, including tracking and stalking.

Since that time, there have been thousands and thousands of girls and women who are or were members of Girl Guides in Western Australia, part of the global association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts.

What's changed?

What has changed is that Girl Guides has kept up with (and in some cases has been at the forefront of) society's shifts in perceptions of women and girls. Today, Girl Guides is about supporting girls to develop a sense of self-confidence and accountability. Our members are given opportunities to grow as people, develop their leadership skills, and make a genuine difference in the world. Although the Association has always been about these kinds of values, today we approach our values with a greater sense of empowerment and equality.

The other major change over time is that we now consider spirituality a personal matter and aim to be a truly inclusive organisation, welcoming girls and women of all faiths, cultures and racial identities. Our Promise and Laws have been updated in recent years to reflect this desire to be an inclusive organisation in which girls and young women are empowered to respect and protect themselves, as well as others.



A Girl Guide makes a promise to do her best to be the best person she can be. The Promise is about herself, personal development, her own spiritual journey and developing her value system. It is about what she does for others - the commitment to help others and a responsibility to our country. 

A Girl Guide makes her Promise at a special Unit ceremony where she receives her Promise Badge to be worn on her uniform. 

The Guide Law gives Guides guidance and a code to live by as they strive to put their Promise into action. The Promise and Law underpin everything we do as Girl Guide's: no matter what activity or challenge. It will enable them to grow into confident, self-respecting, responsible community members. 

What's the same?

A Girl Guide still makes a promise to do her best to be the best person she can be. The Promise is about herself, personal development, her own spiritual journey and developing her value system. It is about what she does for others - the commitment to help others and a responsibility to our country. A Girl Guide makes her Promise at a special ceremony where she receives her Promise Badge to be worn on her uniform. 

The Guide Law, although it has been changed to reflect more modern values, gives Girl Guides guidance and a code to live by as they strive to put their Promise into action. The Promise and Law underpin everything we do as Girl Guides, no matter what activity or challenge. These two fundamentals empower them to grow into confident, self-respecting, responsible community members.

Girl Guides still wear a uniform (a comfortable, modern-style uniform!) and share an identity with Girl Guides and Girl Scouts all over the world - over 10 million members worldwide!