Scouting is the UK’s biggest mixed youth organisation. I got involved as a Venture Scout at 15-years-old, when a close school friend wanted to go but not alone. Her sales pitch was “there are boys”. I was sold. It was so much fun I stayed involved for more than 15 years. Don’t dismiss this volunteering opportunity due to preconceptions.
Many a time did I hear “dib dib dib” and “where’s your woggle?” which was always meant in good jest yet I always wanted to defend the organisation. Unless you have a child who attends a section or you’re an ex-scout then usually people are uninformed.
The Scout Association worldwide headquarters is Gilwell Park, Chingford, London, England. A campsite I’ve been to so many times for many reasons – all fantastic fun. They lead an organisation with over 450,000 members and over 150,000 volunteers.
The Scouting in the UK website www.scouts.org.uk is a fantastic wealth of information; they state scouting offers 6 to 25-year-olds fun and challenging activities, unique experiences, everyday adventure and the chance to help others so that we make a positive impact in communities.
A little too broad a description for you perhaps? Well how about taking part in activities as diverse as kayaking, abseiling, expeditions overseas, photography, climbing and zorbing. As a Scout the children can learn survival skills, first aid, computer programming, or even how to fly a plane. This is one dear photo of my old units and I at the gate of Hadrian’s Wall. One hilarious week of walking, sunshine and blister management. Few to zero mobile phone cameras back then.
These weekly, monthly, annual adventures are only possible thanks to adult volunteers, who support Scouts in a wide range of roles from working directly with young people, to helping manage a Group, to being a charity Trustee. The majority of Scout volunteers say that their newly learnt skills and experiences have been useful in their work or personal life. Plus if you’re ever in doubt whether you can do this – YOU CAN!
Search for your local Group to find out how you can be a part of the adventure.
You can choose which age range you want to help with, you can choose whether you a local group is best for you or maybe a county based role if you have a specialist skill. I guarantee laughter and your own personal development too.
In times when children want to sit in front of a gaming console or their head stuck in social media; it is fantastic to read there are also many many young people who want to interact with other young people. Be outside, share experiences and have fun. You can support and encourage the next generation that putting your mobile phone or tablet down for a couple of hours won’t the end of the world. Recent article on the Scout Association.
By the way, it took me a couple of years to click that “dib dib dib” originally was D Y B. DO YOUR BEST! Can’t argue with that, can we?