Early Life: Early Life On 22 February 1889, Olave St.Claire Soames (later to be known as lady Baden-Powell ) was born in Chesterfield, England . She was the third and youngest daughter of Harold Soames and Katharine Soames. Her parents educated her along with a number of governesses at home. Olave had lived in 17 different houses by the time she was 23. Olave was keen on outdoor sports like tennis, swimming, football, skating and canoeing. She also played the violin.
Marriage and Children: Marriage and Children In January,1912,Olave met Robert Baden-Powell,the founder of scouts,on the ocean liner, RMSP Arcadian. By the end of the cruise , they where secretly engaged . They shared the same birthday. When they met he was 55 and she was 23,A 32 year age difference!! They got married in secret on October 30,1912. They had three children,Arthur Robert peter(30th Oct 1913 – 9th Dec 1962), Heather (Grace) Baden-Powell (1st June 1915 – 3rd May 1986), and Betty (St. Clair) Baden-Powell,(16th Apr 1917 – 24th Apr 2004).
Involvement in Girl Guides/Scouts: Involvement in Girl Guides/Scouts Her first offer to help with girl guides was turned down, in 1914. After the reorganization of the girl guides in 1915, she offered again to help, this time successfully and started organizing guiding in Sussex. In October,1916 the first conference for county commissioners was held and lady B-P was elected chief commissioner. While she was in this role, she got a lot of other women in other parts of Britain to take up roles in guiding. In 1918 Olave was given the title “chief guide”, a position which she liked more. At the Swanwick conference for commissioners in October 1918, she was presented with a gold version of the silver fish, sometimes referred to as a gold fish. In 1930 she was made chief guide of the world.
Recognition and Standard: Recognition and Standard In 1932, she was awarded the dame grand cross of the most excellent order of the British empire (GBE) by king George V, in recognition of her volunteer work. Finland awarded her the order of the white rose, and Peru the order of the sun. Olave Baden-Powell was presented with a personal standard by the UK girl guide's county commissioners. It was designed by Mrs. Zigomala.Miss Kay-Shuttleworth supervised the making of the standard. The standard of lady Baden-Powell, chief guide of the world, is blue (azure) from the hoist to the fly. Nearest the hoist is the gold (or) trefoil; Then come two small hemispheres, showing a coloured map of the world, indicating her post as chief guide. These are placed high to the left of the main fly, which is divided throughout its length by two silver (argent) waves, amongst which are shown three ships with black hulls and white sails, four dolphins and the gold fish of the chief guide. Then between two red (gules) motto bands on which are embroidered the Baden-Powell and girl guide mottos in gold letters, there is a section alluding to the outdoor life, showing white tents on a green (vert) field. In the extreme fly the Baden-Powell crests are embroidered .
Old Age: Old Age In October 1939, Olave moved to Nyeri, Kenya with her husband, where he died on January 8, 1941. She had visited 111 countries by the time she was 80 In 1961 she had a heart attack in Australia. In 1970,when she was 80, she was diagnosed with diabetes and her doctor banned her from traveling. Lady Baden –Powell died on June 25,1977 of diabetes.
In Her Memory : In Her Memory Scouts and guides mark February 22 as B.-P. Day or World Thinking Day, the joint birthdays of Robert and Olave Baden-Powell, to remember and celebrate the work of the chief scout and chief guide of the world.