>> Monday, April 11, 2016
Tip 1 Make sure every girl has your details on them
Wristbands are ideal, or a tied on label, don't rely on stickers that peel off jumpers and lose ink in the wet.
When we have taken our Brownies to London we always put a wristband on them. It has the name of our Leader In Charge on it and our Brownie Unit mobile phone number on it. Never write the child's name on it. This would make it much easier for a stranger to 'befriend' a lone child and lead them into a false sense of security.
With Senior Section I made sure they all had both leaders mobile numbers in their phones and I gave them all a small laminated card with our numbers, the emergency number and the number of the place we were staying.
Tip 2 keep photos of the girls with you
Get permission from parents and take a photo on your phone of each girl on the day, this will help you if you need to show it to someone and it can also be transferred electronically for police distribution if needed.
Tip 3 make sure they know what to do if they are separated from you
We made the most of our Young Leaders and 'allocated' the Guides to them whilst we leaders had the Brownies and over all responsibility for all.
I spoke to a wonderful Scouter on the phone just before we walked down the Mall at the front of the procession, with 250,000 other people behind us. He said "Put all your older ones around the outside and walk as a box. As the crowd start to run from behind close ranks and they will run around you and not split you up." Clever man, he was right and that box formation kept us together in the crush.
We didn't lose anyone, but I did see a very pale looking brown owl that had lost a girl, it does happen. I'm sure she will have had her girl labelled up and there were so many police around that day no child could be lost for long but I think the labelling is key to a quick reunion.