ICANDO is one of four training and activity centers managed by the Girlguiding United Kingdom (UK) organization. Girlguiding offers scouting programs for girls of all ages, and is similar to the Girl Scouts program in the United States (US). ICANDO takes up several floors of the Girlguiding headquarters in central London, and is used by groups of Girl Guides from all over the UK. These groups can visit to take part in educational programs, earn merit badges, or enjoy sleepovers and other special events. ICANDO is also open to other groups, including boy scouts, schools, and camp programs.
Girl Guides often visit the London headquarters to take part in scouting-related events. For example, ICANDO offers programs aimed at younger scouts, who are known as Brownies. At the organization's Brownie Days, girls complete workshops to earn merit badges in areas such as health, the environment, animals, or global issues. Older girls who have completed the Girlguiding Baden-Powell badge can celebrate this achievement at special award weekends at ICANDO. Baden-Powell weekends incorporate programs at the headquarters as well as an urban adventure that takes place on the streets of London.
This facility also serves as a headquarters for Girl Guide troops as they explore London or take part in sightseeing tours. It serves as an affordable alternative to standard hotels, where girls sleep in sleeping bags under a large tent. ICANDO helps groups organize these tours, and serves as a home base for the girls during their trip. Guides can take meals or store luggage at the facility as they visit various London attractions.
Girl Guides and other groups can reserve space at ICANDO for events ranging from birthday parties to sleepovers. The facility also arranges special camps and workshops for these groups. Some examples include a circus camp, science camp, construction workshops, and programs that focus on animal care or detective work. This organization also oversees holiday events that various groups may attend, including Halloween tours of haunted spots in London, St. Patrick's day events and winter wonderland days where young Girl Guides can visit with Santa Claus.
In addition to the ICANDO facility, which is located near Buckingham Palace, Girlguiding also operates three other activity centers throughout the UK. These include a working farm in Sussex, a property in the Lancashire countryside and a camp in one of Britain's National Forests. All of these facilities offer affordable lodging in addition to special programs and activities.