Five minutes with … Lou Pennington

Every month, we like to get to know a member of our amazing Victorian Guiding community a little better. This month we caught up with Unit Leader and Olave, Lou Pennington.

A Leader at 5th Brighton Guides, and an active member of the Victorian Olave Community, Lou has a strong family connection with Guiding and has been Guiding for over twenty years.

How old were you when you joined Girl Guides and why did you join?
I was 7 when I joined back in 2002 as a Brownie. I think, at the time, it was natural succession for me to join, especially with my Gran, Nan, Mum and both Aunties all at various points of their Guiding journeys.

You were involved with putting together the Kani-Karrung Australian Guide Jamboree – what did you learn from that experience?
Where do I start! Running a National Jamboree was an eye-opener and I feel so lucky to have stood beside such a brilliant group of people. I learned to lean on those around me for support, and to use my teams’ skill sets to create the best outcome. I gained event organisation and structure skills, and gave myself leeway to make mistakes, to feel vulnerable and to then come back stronger.

What is the best piece of advice you’ve ever received?
Life is short, dance in the rain, jump in the puddle, smile at the new person, pay forward a coffee, look up at the leaves, take a deep breath, give kindness to others, but most importantly give kindness to yourself.

Aside from Guiding, what do you like to do in your spare time?
Spare time … that exists…? When it does exist, I enjoy heading out for a walk or a coffee date with a friend (my order is a strong flat white for those wondering); picking up one of the many craft projects I’ve started and not finished; and taking care of my numerous plants which all seem to still be alive.

What would the title of your autobiography be?
Lou: Welcome to the Zoo

What would you take with you to a deserted island?
A hammock, a G&T, and a good book!

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