Olga Drahonowska-Małkowska

Olga Drahonowska-Małkowska (b. 1888-09-01 in Krzeszowice - 1979-01-15 in Zakopane, Poland) was one of the founders of Scouting in Poland.

Olga Drahonowska-Małkowska
Nationality Polish
Spouse Andrzej Małkowski
File:OAMalkowscy.jpg
Wedding photo of Olga and Andrzej Małkowski

3rd Lwów Girl Scout Company

Olga Drahonowska was introduced to Scouting by her friend, and later husband, Andrzej Małkowski. She became Scoutmaster (harcmistrzyni) of the 3rd Lwów Girl Scout Company (the 1st, 2nd and 4th Companies were Boy Scouts). This consisted of about twenty girls aged between 15 and 20 years.

She married Andrzej Małkowski and they moved from Lwów to Zakopane to benefit Olga's health.

World War I

In the summer of 1914, her health having recovered, Drahonowska-Małkowska organised the first national camp. Girls (by now renamed Guides) from the Russian and German controlled areas of Poland came to the camp under assumed names and false passports. One girl turned out to be a spy and was caught looking through Drahonowska-Małkowska's tent for a list of these Guides names.

One morning a detachment of the Polish Secret Military Police (some of whom were brothers to the Guides) came to announce that war had been declared. Andrzej Małkowski wrote to say the camp should close at once and that, as the borders had closed, he had found accommodation in Zakopane for those girls who could not get home.

The Malkowski's were asked by the Mayor of Zakopane to organise the night watch for the town because there were insufficient police and older people were too scared.

Andrzej Małkowski decided to join the Polish Legions, along with many of the boys in his Scout Company. Before he left, he organised a cottage for his wife and the boys and girls who no homes, and she opened a café to earn her living.

After Andrzej Małkowski had left, there was one Boy Scout troop and one large Guide Company of 300 girls. They paraded each morning in the central square and gave report and took orders from Drahonowska-Małkowska. They took on huge number of tasks including supplementing the postal service, organising a children's home, helping with the harvest and setting up a hospital.

World War II

At the start of World War II, Drahonowska-Małkowska was running a school using Scouting principles. When war broke out she took them by train to a neutral country. The train was frequently under fire from machine guns mounted on aeroplanes. Drahonowska-Małkowska claimed that the children's Scouting training saved their lives, as when the train was attacked, the children were disciplined enough to obey her order to scatter. This made the children far less easy targets for the gunners than the huddles other passengers formed.

When Drahonowska-Małkowska reached the U.K., the Girl Guides Association (now Girlguiding UK) awarded her their Bronze Cross for Gallantry.

See also

References


pl:Olga Drahonowska-Małkowska