A girl guide from Hemel Hempstead led a national discussion about the role of women in politics ahead of next month’s general election.
18-year-old Ellie Dibben travelled to London on Saturday to lead a debate about how to encourage more young women to make their voices heard.
Ellie, who is leader with 1st Potten End Brownies, is also a member of Girlguiding’s Youth Advocate Panel, a group of 14 to 25-year-olds who discuss issues affecting girls and seek change.
She said: “The lack of female MPs makes Westminster feel really removed from the interests of girls and young women.
“That’s why Girlguiding is calling on politicians to listen to girls’ concerns ahead of the general election with its Girls Matter campaign.”
Girls Matter is a cross- party campaign featuring eight calls for change, including a guarantee that women will be equally represented in Parliament.
Other aims include making girls’ rights a priority in the UK’s approach to international development, and modernising Sex and Relationship Education (SRE) in schools.
The meeting was chaired by Ciara O’Connor, founder of young women’s organisation The Emily Tree.
The Emily Tree aims to get girls and young women interested in politics, running engagement sessions in schools and communities, alongside internship programmes at the Houses of Parliament.
Ciara O’Connor said: “Both Girlguiding and the Emily Tree are passionate about increasing the number of women involved in politics. It was great to meet these politically engaged young women, and discuss the practical steps both charities are taking to ensure that women are fairly represented, both in politics and in wider society.”