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Irene Fairbairn is well remembered for her commitment to the Promise and Law, her sense of fun, her love of the outdoors and especially of daffodils.
The Fairbairn property of "Banongil" near Skipton, Victoria was renowned for its daffodil display and the development of new varieties of daffodil, hence the daffodil on the Irene Fairbairn badges.
Having been a leader in the United Kingdom, Irene Fairbairn moved to Australia as a bride. She continued to work untiringly for the Guide movement in a wide variety of positions at local, state, national and world level. She was a leader, Local Association (now known as Support Groups) president, as Victorian secretary, Victorian State Commissioner, executive committee member and Australian vice president. She was Australia's first federal secretary and first Federal Commissioner.
Irene Fairbairn was honoured by the Queen with the C.B.E. for services to guiding, and the community. She was also presented with the Silver Fish, guiding's highest award foroutstanding service.
Irene Fairbairn's love of guiding, both in Australia and throughout the world led her to become involved in international conferences and in the first moves in the formulation of an organised world association. She had a special love for Snagam, the World Centre in India, and served as a member of the World sub-committee for this centre.
She had a vision that young members of the movement should have every opportunity to share guiding with their sister guides, both within Australia and overseas. The Irene Fairbairn Fund was commenced in 1955 as an expression of affection and appreciation by the Girl Guides of Australia to their retiring first Chief Commissioner. The establishment of this fund enabled her hopes to become a reality.
Irene Fairbairn died in 1974 but while the fund exists, Irene Fairbairn will be remembered for the warmth of her personality and her unending interest in the young members of the movement.