Five easy ways to make your group even more youth shaped

7th February 2020

Young people are at the very heart of what we do here at ScoutsCymru. This is why we are working hard to make Scouting more youth shaped throughout Wales. We know that young people should be involved in decision making, programme creation and all other elements of our organisation. We want ScoutsCymru to reflect the fast-paced and ever-changing world facing our young people today.

To celebrate this, we are going to be writing a series of blogs throughout February that will help you to ensure that your young people have their say!

To start us off, here’s five easy ways that you can make your group more youth shaped -

 

1. Hold a forum

Most groups will already be doing this, but the important thing to remember is to keep it fresh and exciting!

A forum is a fantastic way to get young people to take an active role in planning their own programme and making sure that they are doing the badges that they want to do and going on the trips that they want to go on.

To keep your younger sections engaged you could have them take part in a game of corners where they will vote on different badges. For older sections, try a Dragons Den themed activity where the group will put together a pitch and deliver it to a team of judges.

It’s really important for leaders to keep in mind that they need to listen to their young people’s ideas and implement some of what they suggest – make them feel valued!

 

2. Peer Leadership

Developing leadership skills in young people has always been a vital part of Scouting. It allows them to practice their leadership in a safe and supported environment.

 

3.Ask your local (or national) youth commissioner to visit

Areas and Districts should have a Youth Commissioner who can make visits to your section. They act as an advocate for youth shaped scouting and to support their District or Area. You can work with them to run an activity with your group that you think will benefit them. You can request a visit from one of our two Wales Youth Commissioners using this form -https://docs.google.com/forms/d/e/1FAIpQLSdUx4Wfz4lAKuExFwmHOVVzWEok4H5x_aWRsEnxSj0UhpKbPA/viewform

 

4.Invite young people to give updates to your Executive Committee

It can be insightful to have young people involved in governance. Involving young people in decision making is essential for our governance structures to stay informed and responsive. By encouraging a mixture of experiences and ages on our executive committees and District/Area teams, we are more likely to encourage healthy debate and make better decisions which are relevant to the lives of young people in today’s society.

To get your young people involved you could invite them to attend part of your executive committee meeting to give a termly update on what they’ve been up to. Young people aged 18-25 can also be appointed to the Executive Committee. Find more info on how to involve young people in governance here - https://members.scouts.org.uk/supportresources/4794/governance?cat=708&moduleID=10

 

5.Let your young people choose their A Million Hands cause

The A Million Hands themes have been formed from the issues that our young people feel passionate about, so they should be able to make the decision about which cause they focus on. You can ask them to vote on which theme they care about the most and they think affects their community. They can also use this activity as a way to help them achieve their Community Impact Staged Badge. Find suggestions of activities here - https://scouts.org.uk/staged-badges/community-impact/