Brownies are the section in the Girl Guides (or in the United States, Girl Scouts) organization for girls aged seven years old to ten years old. Exact age limits are slightly different in each organization.
Brownies, originally called Rosebuds, were first organized by Lord Baden-Powell in 1914, to complete the range of age groups for girls in Scouting. They were first run as the youngest group in the Guide Association by Agnes Baden-Powell, Lord Baden-Powell's younger sister. In 1918 his wife, Lady Olave Baden-Powell, took over the responsibility for the Girl Guides and thus for Brownies.
Originally the girls were called Rosebuds, but were renamed by Lord Baden-Powell after the girls had complained that they didn't like their name. Their name comes from the story "The Brownies" by Juliana Horatia Ewing, written in 1870. In the story two children, Tommy and Betty, learn that children can be helpful brownies instead of being lazy boggarts.
In the United Kingdom, Brownies were originally called Rosebuds. Rosebuds was started in 1914 and was originally for girls aged 8-11. Rosebuds was renamed to Brownies in 1915. In 1937 Princess Margaret became the first royal Brownie.
Brownies is the second youngest section of Girlguiding in the UK; for girls aged 7-10. They work in small groups called sixes. Each six is either named after Fairies or woodland creatures. A six is led by a Sixer and has a Second who acts as deputy. The Brownie programme is called the Brownie Adventure. It is split into 3 parts: you, community, world.
Brownies work towards interest badges, as of 2016 there are 57. These can be done in meetings with the unit or at home or in clubs such as swimming. Brownies can also work towards their Adventure badges. These are gained over a period of time and require girls to complete many different activities, such as going on an adventure, taking part in an activity with another unit and earning an interest badge.
There are a few Brownie songs that some packs sing at the beginning of the meeting:
This is usually sung as each six skips under the brownie bridge and into the circle. It is often followed by the next song:
There are slight variations of the songs.
Some packs also sing one of the traditional songs to end a meeting, to the tune of the Cambridge Chimes:
In Australia (where girls of all ages are now called Girl Guides) the Guiding Promise is:
Prior to 2012, the Promise was:
The Brownie Guide Law, prior to 1996, was:
The Brownie Promise 1990:
I promise to do my best
To do my duty to God
To serve my Queen & my country
To help other people
And to do a good deed every day.
Motto 1990: Be prepared.
The Brownie Guide Motto, prior to 1996, was:
The Guide Law, Promise and Motto, which are followed by all ages of the guiding movement after 1996, are the Laws, Promise and Motto relating to the guide age group.
The Canadian Brownie Law is:
The Canadian Brownie Motto is:
The old Brownie Promise is from the 1950s
The English Brownie Law is:
The English Brownie Motto is:
In Hong Kong, the Brownie Promise is:
The Law is:
In Ireland, the Brownie Promise is:
The word 'God' can be replaced by the word 'faith' according to one's spiritual beliefs.
The Irish Brownie Motto is:
The Singaporean Brownie Promise is:
I promise to do my best,
To do my duty to God,
To serve my country,
And to help other people,
and to keep the Brownie Law.
The Singaporean Brownie Law is:
The Singaporean Brownie Motto is:Lend a hand
In the United Kingdom, the Brownie Promise is:
After a wide public consultation in spring 2013, the promise wording was changed for all sections.
The Brownie promise before September 2013 was:
The Brownie Guide Law is:
The Brownie Guide Motto used to be 'Lend a hand' (LAH). With the introduction of the new programme in the United Kingdom, the motto was dropped for Brownies.
Girl Scout Promise:
Girl Scout Law: