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Scouting Scotland

vember 2013 October/No


Firstsh Scottiion! edit


SPORTING CHANCE Looking forward to next summer’s big event in Glasgow Make a difference Volunteer at home and abroad with SOWA

Scouting and me Meet the new UK Chief Executive Matt Hyde

Go wild

at Lochgoilhead National Activity Centre

LOG ON TO FIND MORE AT. SCOUTS ORG.UK/ E MAGAZIN Scouting Editors Lee Griffiths, Matthew Jones, Antonia Kanczula, Vicky Milnes and Kevin Yeates Scouting Scotland Editors Addie Dinsmore, Moray Macdonald With thanks to... Steve Backhouse, Helen Bacon, Ralph Doe, Jim Duffy, Fiona Duncan, Graham Haddock, Colin Hastie, Kerry Hennegan, Eddie James, Celia King, Samantha Marks, Mike Masino, Natasha Milsted, Terry O’Neil, Kester Sharpe, Barry Smith, Wez Swain Cover image: David Anderson The national magazine of The Scout Association ISSN 0036 – 9489 © 2013 The Scout Association Registered Charity Numbers: 306101 (England and Wales) and SC038437 Published by The Scout Association, Gilwell Park, Chingford, London E4 7QW Tel: 0845 300 1818 Fax: 020 8433 7103 Email: Website: in association with The Scottish Council The Scout Association, Registered Scottish Charity No. SC017511, affiliated to The Scout Association(UK). Scottish Scout HQ, Fordell Firs, Hillend, Dunfermline, Fife KY11 7HQ Tel: 01383 419073 Website: Please send all contributions to: Please note that the views expressed by members and contributors in the magazine are not necessarily those of The Scout Association. Scouting Scotland is produced by Immediate Media Branded Content, 9th Floor, Tower House, Fairfax Street, Bristol BS1 3BN Editor Anna Scrivenger Group Art Editor Will Slater Art Editor James Daniel Project Manager Ian Ochiltree Director of Immediate Media Branded Content Julie Williams Group Publishing Director Alfie Lewis ADVERTISING Advertising Manager Tom Parker Email: Tel: 0117 314 8781 It is important to note the differing structures of UK Scouting in England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland. However, for ease of reading this supplement refers to all variations of ‘County’-level groupings simply as County. You can read Scouting magazine, Get Active! and Instant Scouting online at 110,002 average UK circulation of Scouting from 1 Jan-31 Dec 2011

Help others to help yourself A core belief I live by, and that is absolutely central to Scouting, is that while you should strive for adventure and excitement, always be generous and show nothing but the utmost care for those around you. As a Scout volunteer, you know that helping others is a way of helping yourself, too. Doing something that’s challenging – and benefits a community or an individual – gives you the chance to develop valuable life skills like responsibility, teamwork and leadership. It also gives you the chance to meet people from a wide range of backgrounds; a theme explored in our Vision article on page 24 and our Real Troopers profile from page 18. Invigorated by these skills, you can aim higher and strive to do even greater things – it’s a cumulative thing.   You don’t need me to tell you that each and every day, around the UK and globally, volunteers and young people within Scouting calmly, selflessly and literally reach out to others. Whether it’s a simple kind deed, such as helping an elderly member of the public or an unbelievable act of lifesaving bravery, we should all be super-proud that Scouting encourages and nurtures a sense of empathy. Particularly when it can seem at times that modern life is all about the ‘me, me, me’. Just take a look at some amazing stories on page 38 of this issue: they’re a mere snapshot of Scout social action, in action.  Let’s keep aiming higher – and drive our young people not only to seek action in their lives but to take action too. The potential gains are endless. 

© Immediate Media Branded Content. Printed in the UK by William Gibbons. All rights reserved. Unauthorised reproduction in whole or part is prohibited without written permission. Every effort has been made to secure permission for copyright material. In the event of any material being used inadvertently, or where it proved impossible to trace the copyright owner, acknowledgement will be made in a future issue.


This magazine can be recycled, for use in newspapers and packaging. Please remove any gifts, samples or wrapping and dispose of it at your local collection point.

We are proud to say Scouting is PEFC certified. For more information go to Promoting sustainable forest management.

Bear Grylls Chief Scout SCOUTING 3

Every issue we ask three readers to share their thoughts on the subjects we cover. Next time, it could be you pictured here, so if you fancy joining our reader panel for an issue, email uk to sign up. And keep an eye out for our handy reader panel stamp throughout the magazine.

ON THE COVER 10 A sporting chance

This month we asked our readers… What’s your Scouting ambition?


Helen Bacon, Assistant Explorer Scout Leader ‘I supervise and assess expeditions for Explorers across the Rotherham District and beyond. I aim to help all Explorers (whether part of Rotherham Explorers or not) to achieve their potential whatever their ability.’ Jane McKenzie, Cub Pack Assistant ‘For me, being scared, over 50, and living with disabilities are not reasons to say no. Instead, I ask myself how I can take part. My Pack’s Akela, Jim, encouraged me to join in camp and get involved despite my limitations. This has helped in my recovery and in building my confidence again.’ Gordon Jack, Assistant Explorer Scout Leader ‘I want to deliver a varied and exciting programme to my young people and share successful activities and best practice with colleagues. I enjoy being able to influence Scottish Scouting and offer advice on Explorer Scout programme issues as a member of the Scottish Explorer Scout Support Team.’


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Scouts prepare for their Commonwealth Legacy Project ahead of 2014 Lochgoilhead Visit this stunning National Activity Centre at Loch Goil World vision Learn about opportunities with the Scouts of the World award Scouting and me Inspiring words from Matt Hyde, the new UK Chief Executive



13 15 16

News Graham Haddock welcomes you to the new Scouting Scotland magazine Housekeeping Essential print centre and membership system updates What’s on Stuck for October/November event ideas? Look no further… The ‘IST’ experience Fiona Duncan gives tips on signing up for the International Service Team



Bright Sparks We go behind the scenes at the recording of the Bright Sparks single Let It Out


10 34

Memorable investitures A round-up of your most unique welcoming ceremonies




Wayne’s word This issue’s message from the UK Chief Commissioner Last word Paralympian Sarah Storey talks about what inspires her



56 59 61

Volunteer We talk to Scout Leader and circus tutor Wez Swain Advice Your questions are answered by our expert panel Advice Celia King continues her series on good leadership and management Bonfire Night All the safety advice and tips you need to have a safe and enjoyable evening Walk Take a hike around the green spaces of London Food Make a chicken curry Games Puzzles and prizes

October/November 2013

Inspiring, amazing and selfless acts

IN THE DIARY Wayne’s always on the move, supporting Scouting around the UK. Here’s where he’ll be in the coming weeks


Ingrid Loyau-Kennett’s brave action in the summer was fostered by her training as a Cub Scout Leader

unique programme really do make a difference to the lives of everybody, whether youth members or volunteers, and make for a better community for all. Perhaps this is food for thought as you get your head around the programme for the winter term. You will be providing fun and exciting activities and, without young people necessarily realising it, embedding new skills – the benefits of which may not be truly visible for a number of years yet.

of other young people and adults who have gone above and beyond the call of duty to help others. Each one strives to achieve positive change through social action, and Scouting has galvanised their get-up-and-go spirit. While impact studies and KPIs are a necessary evil of the 21st century (and we are able to use them to good effect), stories like these remind us that the skills young people learn through Scouting’s


Joint team meeting GGUK


Volunteering Service at Westminster Abbey

19-20 JOTA–JOTI/Ops Committee


Scout Fellows Reception

26-27 Devon (CSA presentation, Groups)


Scottish AGM


Hampshire management course


HOBY UK youth training in Runcorn

November 1


DC induction day

October/November 2013

Picture: Rex


ne news story over the summer was the bravery of Ingrid Loyau-Kennett, who attributed her selfless act in confronting one of Lee Rigby’s attackers to the skills she learned as a Cub Scout Leader. Every day there are countless amazing stories of bravery and social action among Scouts and volunteers: Scouts stepping in to help a 92-year-old man whose allotment was targeted by arsonists; our young people raising money for a hospice by entering a mammoth canoe race; a leader intervening to rescue a woman from an overturned car. Over the past 18 months alone we have made more than 90 awards to young people and adults recognising their bravery and overcoming adversity through our Gallantry and Meritorious Conduct awards. Each one is an inspiring story in itself, as I found when I was honoured to present young Stirling Stafford with a Medal for Meritorious Conduct during a visit to Oxfordshire’s One World County Camp in July. On pages 38-45 you can also read the stories

Scouting is the perfect foundation for making a difference – and even inspiring heroic acts, says UK Chief Commissioner Wayne Bulpitt

October/November 2013

The latest Scouting Scotland news and events



Enjoy specially selected news from Scottish Scouting HQ


elcome to the first Scottish edition of Scouting magazine. As well as the usual excellent UK-wide content, from now on every adult involved in Scouting in Scotland will receive this version of the magazine, which will include issues pertinent to Scotland. The Scottish edition replaces SHQ’s Pathfinder magazine. Two issues of Pathfinder will become six issues of our own version of Scouting, which we hope will keep you more up-to-date with events and issues in Scotland. The Scottish content will be compiled by a volunteer and staff team at SHQ. If you have anything you’d like to see published in our Scottish pages, let us know. In this issue we look at the launch of our Commonwealth

programme; the International Service Team experience in advance of our selection process for the Japan Jamboree; what’s on offer at our Lochgoilhead National Activity Centre; and current issues including PVG Scheme update, Cashback and Youth in the Lead funding, and Young Spokesperson training. I hope you find the new magazine from Scottish HQ helpful in whatever role you enjoy in Scottish Scouting.

Graham Haddock, Chief Commissioner of Scotland

Scouting Scotland wants young people to influence how we shape and manage the movement. This includes speaking up for Scouting in public. A course to train Explorer Scouts in media and influencing skills runs in Scotland on 18 January 2014. To nominate a young person, contact your ARC (Communication). The course, including travel, is free thanks to Youth in the Lead funding from the Scottish Government.


Scottish Headquarters administers Cashback Small Grants Scheme and Youth in the Lead Funding to provide Scout Troops, Explorer Scout Units, Scout Network Units and individuals with grants to start up new sections, develop activity programmes and deliver training opportunities. More information on deadlines and how to apply can be found at development


The phased migration of holders of old Disclosures to the PVG Scheme is well under way. When it’s your turn, you will be alerted by the Vetting Team and asked by your Appointments Secretary to complete a PVG application. If you already hold PVG Scheme membership from elsewhere, an Existing Scheme Member form must be completed. Some roles are ‘out of scope’ for PVG. Please respond promptly to clarify your position and ensure uninterrupted continuity of your role in Scouting.



Scouts gear up with an exciting project as Glasgow prepares to host a special sporting event in 2014 In less than a year, all the excitement and buzz of another international sporting event will be on our shores. The 20th Commonwealth Games is to be held in Glasgow next summer and Scottish Scouting is gearing up to make the most of this opportunity by getting our young people involved and encouraging adults to volunteer. The Scottish Scouts Commonwealth Legacy Project was launched at the Auchengillan Jamboree with special guests Graham Haddock, Chief Commissioner for Scotland; Phil Packer, Scouting Ambassador; and official Games mascot, Clyde – along with plenty of very excited (and very muddy) Scouts.

A wealth of resources

A resource pack full of varied activities is being developed, so leave room in your programme from January to June. The first batch will be released in November, the next in March. Colin Hastie, Assistant Regional Commissioner (Section Support) in Forth Region, who is co-ordinating the Scottish Scouts Commonwealth Legacy Project, said: ‘This is a fantastic opportunity for our young people to experience an international sporting event on their doorstep, and hopefully these activities will bring the experience a bit closer to each of them. It’s a great time for Scotland and a great time for Scouting.’


Clyde, the mascot for next year’s Commonwealth Games in Glasgow, with Phil Packer and Scouts at Auchengillan Jamboree

October/November 2013


Join a project in Birmingham that will inspire Scouts nationwide


Volunteers inspired by Explorer Scouts from 64th Birmingham Scout Group have launched a project to fund a Scouting Memorial that will remember all who have given service to Scouting and honour members who have suffered through conflict. The memorial will be built in Staffordshire at the National Memorial Arboretum, the UK’s year-round centre of remembrance. Paul Little, project co-ordinator, explains: ‘We want to give everyone in UK Scouting the chance to be part of this, so we’ve launched a national competition to design the memorial.

As we approach Remembrance Day, it’s an ideal time to raise awareness of this project within your Group.’ He continues: ‘We wanted to give young people ownership of the project from the start. Connor White, a 10-year-old Cub from Birmingham, designed our cloth and pin memorial badges and so far we’ve sold more than 18,000!’ The fundraising target is just over £80,000, which will go towards the memorial’s design, building and maintenance costs. For more details visit

CUB Cycling for CENTENARY Scouting We’re looking forward to 2016 and celebrating one hundred years of Cub Scouting. Just one year after its launch in 1916, 30,000 young people had joined; now there are over 150,000 Cubs in the UK and more waiting to join. Events across the UK will celebrate the anniversary. Get your Beavers and Cubs to enter our competition to design the Cub Scout Centenary Badge using the form (right). The winning design will be worn by all members in the UK during the celebrations. The competition closes on 31 January 2014. Find out more at

Hampshire Scouts’ Ambassador and adventurer James Ketchell has set off on an epic cycle ride to raise awareness of Scouting and funds for local charity ELIFAR. The journey will see him travel 18,000 miles through over 20 countries using only pedal power and, when completed, will make him the first man to have rowed the Atlantic, climbed Everest and cycled around the world. To find out the latest, read his blog on and follow @CaptainKetch on Twitter.


This commemorative edition of the 1914 classic Scout Tests and How to Pass Them will transport you back to a time long before electronic consoles and tablets. From Coast Watchman to Bee Farmer, and from Woodman to Pathfinder, it offers a fascinating view into a breathtaking array of Scout badges available a century ago. Available from from October.


We want to know what you think about Scouting – it’s your magazine, after all. And, if you answer our short questionaire at, you’ll automatically be entered into a draw to win one of three amazing Berghaus Torridon rucksacks worth £85 each. The deadline has now been extended to 31 October, so there’s still a chance to win yourself a Berghaus bag!


The winner of our ‘Design your own Bridgedale Sock competition’ is Josh R of France Lynch Scout Group with the ‘Union Jack’ sock. This design is now in production by Bridgedale, and everyone in the Group will receive a pair. The runners up were James Thurlby of Stotfold Scouts and Jessica Dobbins of 46th Gloucester Scouts, who win Bridgedale socks.



The latest on our membership system and Print Centre

Deleted factsheets: FS500008 Administration and record keeping All advice is available in Member Resources.

Updated factsheets: FS500005 The key policies of The Scout Association FS140004 Fundamentals of Scouting FS140099 Fundamentals Explained: Purpose, values and methods of Scouting

Current factsheets can be downloaded at uk/supportresources


The annual membership fee is the amount local Scouting pays to UKHQ for every member and it will remain at £21 (£20.50 for prompt payment) per member for 2014. Locally, Groups, Districts and Counties/Area/Regions (Scotland) set their own subscription fee for their members to reflect their needs and facilities and to support the day-to-day running of Scouting.


From January 2016 we will introduce a revised method of calculating the membership subscription. It will be based on youth members only – and the number of adult volunteers will not form part of the subscription calculation. Our new membership system, Compass, will be updated with all member data allowing a simple calculation of the subscription fee.

The new membership system, Compass, has recently been tested by 150 volunteers with good results. From spring 2014 each County/Area/ Region will change over from the current system to use Compass when their data is ready, in a phased transition – see details at uk/membershipsystem. The system will: track and flag any adult training needs, permit applications and vetting check requirements; it will allow leaders to manage young people’s attendance, badge progress and awards details; and enable the annual census to be done automatically.

Print Centre


Thank you to the 500 members who took part in the Print Centre summer survey. We value your feedback and we’re working to increase the flexibility of the templates, improve choice, access and reliability as well as making the pricing as competitive as possible. To access the Print Centre and find a wide variety of materials, including our new Bear Grylls recruitment materials, log in at with your normal username and password and click on the green Print Centre button on the left-hand side.

Polish resources

To help you grow Scouting in local communities, we have produced a recruitment leaflet, a poster and the Parent’s Pack in Polish. For printed resources, access the Print Centre (under My Tools on our website) and select Supporting Diversity.


0.020% 0.520%

Interest at the higher rate applies to deposits of £5,000 and above. Contact Frances on 020 8433 7252 (Monday-Friday, 9am-3pm) for further information.

Make movies with our new video toolkit

Video is a fantastic way to share the fun, friendship and adventure of Scouting – and now anyone can do it. We’ve put together a video toolkit containing: • An animated Scout logo • Stock activity footage for each age range • A branded slide generator • Hints and tips on shooting a film using a phone or camera • Recommendations for royalty-free music • Advice on free and low-cost video-editing tools Get started now by searching for ‘video toolkit’ on Member Resources at



Autumn events in Scotland you won’t want to miss





Single Pitch Assessment – Mountain Training Scotland

Assessment for running rock activities at Lochgoilhead National Activity Centre. For more details, email



Anti-Bullying Week Help raise awareness and join in events across the UK to stop bullying. For more details and ideas visit the website antibullying and check out Member Resources for Scout information.

24 -1  NOV

A spooky weekend for Cubs at Lochgoilhead National Activity Centre. Hallowe’en themed adventures and a fancy-dress ghoulish disco. For more details email


Explorers can experience a weekend of fun and frights at Meggernie National Activity Centre, set deep in a Highland Perthshire glen. For more details call 01887 866231 or email


Cub Hallowe’en Weekend



Meggernie Almost Haunted




Scottish Interfaith Week

Celebrate diversity and different faiths and beliefs in the community. For some useful information and suggestions see the website www.interfaith, for Scout resources visit



2013 Scottish AGM and Council in Conference The Scottish Council The Scout Association’s Annual General Meeting and Council in Conference will be held at Dunfermline High School. For more information go to

Network-only Weekend Network is taking over the Lochgoilhead National Activity Centre. Sign up for activities and network-orientated evening entertainment. For details email info@lochgoil or call 01301 703217.

29 -1  NOV


BASP two-day Emergency First Aid Course Suitable for outdoor workers, instructors and enthusiasts, leading to a certificate valid for three years and recognised by MLTB, BASI, BCU and other NGBs. Call 01887 866231 or email warden@

Further ahead Wintercamp 10-12 January 2014

Picture: Thinkstock

Teeth-chattering activities for the brave!

Brass Monkey Camp 17-19 January 2014

An extreme winter camp. Email

Young Spokesperson Training 17-19 January 2014 A special course to provide Explorer Scouts with media and public speaking skills so that they can act as spokespeople for Scouting. Email shq@scouts-scotland. or call 01383 419 073.

10th Annual Scottish Scout Burns Supper 21 Feb 2014

An evening of fine dining and top class entertainment that brings together friends and supporters of Scouting from within and outside the Movement. For details of special guests and more email or call 01383 419 073.



THE ‘IST’ EXPERIENCE We find out what it’s like to be part of the International Service Team at a World Scout Jamboree

You can inspire young people, develop your own skills and have fun

Fiona Duncan, member of the Scottish Scout Active Support Unit, attended World Scout Jamborees at both Hylands Park (2007) and Sweden (2011) as part of the medical team. In the run-up to selections for the next event (Japan 2015), she shares her tips on joining the IST Picture this: one minute you’re removing ticks from delicate places and the next you’re being pulled from the crowd to join in with some spontaneous dancing. It can only mean one thing – you’re on IST, the most varied and exciting volunteer role in Scouting.


In the international community bubble of the jamboree, there will be language barriers, but remember that laughter is universal. If you don’t know something, don’t be put off – go adventuring, ask questions and make friends.

Keep moving

You don’t have to be physically fit, but be prepared to walk. Thankfully the same route will always be different with new and interesting things going on – there’s never a dull moment at WSJ.


Meet and mingle

You’re always on the move but there is still time for a social life. Once you’re established on site, old friendships are rekindled and new ones flourish. There’s always someone to chat to, share a meal with, or even just soak up the atmosphere with.

will allow you to help inspire and develop the young people while furthering your own skill set. I used my own experience as a talking point in recent job interviews to demonstrate my commitment to my activities, and my ability to work in diverse conditions within a multicultural community.

Share your skills

Give it 100%

As individuals in a team, everyone brings something fresh to the table and, in addition to the training you receive, this

Above all, work hard, do your best, be yourself, make the most of opportunities and enjoy yourself!


There’s still time to apply for IST at the next World Scout Jamboree in Japan. You can find more information and an application pack at Applications close on 21 October. Other volunteering roles include: working on the sub camps, Faiths and Beliefs Zone, offsite (community service, exploring nature and water activities) site management, transport, food and trading.

October/November 2013



From captain’s garden to expanding National Activity Centre Little did Captain George Pound realise in 1965, when he opened his garden at Inverlounin to Sea Scouts, that it would become one of the largest outdoor residential centres in Scotland. With his naval background, Captain Pound (then-SHQ Commissioner for Sea Scouts) was keen to promote water activities, and offered his back garden on the shores of Loch Goil for young people to learn water-based skills. As numbers and interest grew, a jetty was installed to improve access, but even that was soon too small to cope with demand. Land in the Lochgoilhead village was acquired from the Forestry Commission and generations of Scouts have developed this over the years. This is the site of the present centre. Since its inception, the Centre has welcomed tens of thousands of Scouts and other young people – on land as well as sea. It’s a key training base for leaders progressing through the permit scheme and for individuals and organisations to gain National Governing Body awards.

More recently the Centre has become an important venue for schools, providing courses to support and deliver elements of The Curriculum for Excellence. This is offered through tailored courses running both as part of activities and in the new purpose-built classrooms. The Centre is also fast becoming recognised as an industry leader in The Duke of Edinburgh’s Award expedition training and assessment. Make your way along six miles of single track road from the Rest and be Thankful, and there you’ll find Lochgoilhead, by the water’s edge at the head of Loch Goil, surrounded by hills and lochs. All activities are within walking distance, a feature much appreciated by all who visit. Although it’s now manned by professional staff, volunteers still play a big part in the running of the Centre and the Active Support Unit is always on the lookout for new members to help run activities and carry out other tasks around the site.

Appeal As the Centre approaches its 50th year, staff are on the lookout for photographs and articles from the past. If you have any Lochgoilhead photos or stories to pass on, please get in touch.


For more information on the Lochgoilhead National Activity Centre visit: lochgoilhead. Or check out scouts-scotland. active-support for more details on Active Support.

Glorious landscape offers varied activities on land or on the waters of Loch Goil




Pictures: Rob Scott


Wisbech, Cambridgeshire Founded: 2013 Members: 60 Meet at: Orchards CofE Primary School Did you know? 6,000 young people enjoy Scouting across Cambridgeshire and 1,200 adult volunteers help to make it happen.


Fun and friendship break down the barriers presented by the Group’s six languages

October/November 2013


Top of the class A newly-launched Cambridgeshire Group is using everyday adventure to help bond a community and broaden horizons WORDS VICKY MILNES




ommon aims bind all Scout Groups but each one has a unique focus. For volunteers at 2nd Wisbech Orchards, it’s the potential to make a positive impact on the locality. Its Beaver Scout Leader Dawn Mattless says: ‘We wanted to give young people here a confidence boost and help pull the community together.’ The Group plays a pivotal role in the rural market town; before its inception in February 2013, young people living on the nearby Waterlees Estate had little to do after school. ‘Some families on the estate don’t readily have access to transport, so although there are other Scout Groups in Wisbech, young people weren’t always able to travel to them,’ says Dawn, who is also a teaching assistant at Orchards CofE Primary School. The solution was to set up a Group at the school, which is walking distance from the estate.


The Group unites the diverse community as well as giving young people confidence

‘Around 40% of children here have English as an additional language,’ adds Assistant Leader David Welfare. The result is a truly diverse Group. Within the two sections currently in operation – Beavers and Cubs – no fewer than six first languages are spoken; Lithuanian, Roma, Polish, Latvian, Slovakian and English.

Solid support

From the very outset, there’s been a huge amount of passion for the Group. ‘When we first identified a need for the Group and discussed setting it up with the head teacher, Nicole Parker, she was really keen and practically snapped our hands off,’ says District Commissioner John Lattimore. The children didn’t need much persuading either, as Nicole recalls: ‘We held a school assembly last December and asked the children who wanted to be a Beaver or Cub. 150 put their hands up.’

Talk about thriving; more than 40 young people are currently waiting to join Cubs and plans are afoot to open a Scout Troop. ‘We’ve never had anything like this in the area,’ says David who, like Dawn, is also a teaching assistant at Orchards Primary. ‘It’s great for the children’s confidence. Parents have said to me that before, their kids would just go home and go on their PlayStations.’ Nowadays, they have far more exciting things to do – and there are some dusty and under-used consoles in Wisbech. One recent highlight was the Group’s first camp in a nearby village, as David describes: ‘In May, 22 children went and 18 of them had never even slept under canvas before – and they absolutely loved it.’ Nine-year-old Chloe has no hesitation in telling us about her camp highlight: ‘The water fight!’ she says. ‘Akela started it when we were doing the sack race.’ October/November 2013


Bartłomiej (left) loves sport and earning badges

‘Last year, one of our Explorers brought two Tanzanian exchange students to a meeting. They spoke no English and clearly felt out of their depth. However, after 10 minutes (and a couple of games) the universal language of “doing stuff” bridged the gap. Someone once said to me that language is only a barrier if you want it to be.’ Helen Bacon, Assistant Explorer Scout Leader Local young people had nowhere to go after school until this Group opened

‘Everyone can be themselves and try new things. It doesn’t matter if you don’t get it right first time.’ MIRANDA KEEN

Raivo, nine, from Latvia, says he particularly enjoyed the hiking. The leaders are spurred on by this obvious relish – and are planning a full programme for next year, to include everything from swimming and science badges to rollerskating.

Strength in diversity

The Group’s broad make-up clearly enhances the activities the young people do. ‘The Group’s diversity is a great strength,’ says Dawn. During their second camp – in summer – they tackled the Global Challenge Badge, drawing on their different cultures and backgrounds.

While the Group benefits from its diverse composition, its members also tangibly benefit from the welcoming, energising and supportive environment. ‘We strategically aimed Sixer and Seconder roles at those we thought needed more confidence and sense of identity,’ says David. ‘It’s great to see the Cubs pushing themselves with a determination that some of them find difficult to have in school. In turn, the children’s behaviour at school has improved since the Group was set up.’ One Polish family has certainly got the Scouting bug. Bożena smiles as she talks about how her nine-year-old

son Bartłomiej attends Cubs every Thursday: ‘He’s got somewhere to go and he gets the chance to try different activities. He’s really enjoying it. The leaders are really enthusiastic.’ When asked what his favourite thing is about Cubs, Bartłomiej grins: ‘Getting badges’. He’s currently working hard on his Athletics Activity Badge and is doing particularly well at high jump. His sister Patrycja, 17, is one of three Young Leaders at the Group. ‘I love working with children,’ she enthuses. ‘The Group is great fun and the leaders are inspiring.’

Warm welcome

Helping at the Group has clearly been an enriching experience for staff at the school. ‘We get the chance to do more than just teach them; it’s something else,’ explains Dawn. ‘It’s not always easy to relate to your teachers, but it helps when you’ve been camping with them and seen them bleary-eyed with their morning cup of tea.’ It’s not just the young people of 2nd Wisbech Orchards who



‘They move up into Cubs so fast… You need to prepare for that’ The need Chloe– (left) says for thelarger water sections keeps on growing… fight was the best bit of the Group’s first camp in May

The Scouts’ enthusiasm spurs the leaders on

‘They can play and learn together and it’s a great way to get neighbours talking.’ DAWN MATTLESS

are experiencing Scouting for the first time; some of the leaders are completely new to the Movement, too. Assistant leader Miranda Keen, a teaching assistant at the school, was struck by the Group’s welcoming and inclusive ethos: ‘Everybody can be themselves and try new things. It doesn’t matter if you don’t get things right first time.’ One overriding aim when recruiting for the Group was to help volunteers feel like part of an extended family. Dawn continues: ‘It’s about bringing the children together. They can play and learn together and love getting badges. It’s also a great way to get neighbours talking to each other.’ Nicole is equally enthusiastic: ‘I’m thrilled with the Group. It’s amazing to think that not long ago this was just an idea.’ The Group takes every opportunity to engage parents. One approach is to organise special events where adults


can experience the impact of Scouting first-hand; including a Cubs versus parents rounders tournament, a fun ‘mums, sons and daughters’ event close to Mothers’ Day and a similar event for dads around Fathers’ Day. Several parents have been persuaded to help out at the Group alongside school staff. In fact, signing up adult volunteers has been effortless. Miranda explains: ‘They seemed to flock at the chance. It was because it’s a new Group, it’s theirs and they can put their stamp on it.’

Breaking the mould

The leaders offer their tips for those considering setting up a similar Group: ‘Have an open mind. Try things and evaluate them. Seek advice from your District and County – we’ve had brilliant support,’ outlines Dawn. Cambridgeshire County Commissioner Liz Craig, who

is working on a toolkit based on the Group, adds: ‘Be flexible about the young people’s financial situation. If their parents can’t stretch to the full uniform, remember that just wearing a scarf makes you a Scout.’ For Liz, explaining this success is simple: ‘It’s down to so many people being passionate about the Group and making it work. It doesn’t happen by accident. They’re breaking the mould.’

More info

Inspired to bring Scouting to your area? Visit getinvolved for tips on how to get started. Check out the Print Centre at for resources on supporting diversity.

October/November 2013



siders whether n co d, n la ot Sc r fo er ief Commission Graham Haddock, Ch ities in which we live n u m m co e th ts en es Scouting truly repr


nclusion and diversity are two words that have become increasingly used in Scouting. Unfortunately, I’m not sure that some of us truly understand what they mean and what we are supposed to do to make Scouting more diverse or inclusive. In some respects, the words themselves get in the way. Diverse means: ‘Differing one from another or made up of distinct characteristics, qualities, or elements’. Inclusion means: ‘The action or state of including, or of being included within a group or structure’. If we apply these two definitions to Scouting, inclusion and diversity must be including people who differ from one another or are made up of distinct characteristics, qualities or elements. You could argue that as we are all different, we are already diverse, almost by default. But is this true? If you look at our membership profile we are predominantly male,


white, middle class, healthy and with Christian roots. As such, I would challenge each and every one of you to accept that, as the UK’s biggest co-educational youth organisation, we are failing in our aspiration to be diverse. Incidentally, this is why it’s important to complete the annual census as accurately as

additional needs do you see – walking with a stick, in a wheelchair or with a sensory impairment? Are there any gay or lesbian couples around? After your five-minute peoplewatching walk, consider what efforts you have made locally to find out who actually lives in your community and where they can be found. In my view,

‘How can we include people with challenges in our membership?’ possible, so we know how we are doing in terms of diversity. But are we inclusive? Take five minutes the next time you walk through your town to people-watch. How many people who seem in financial difficulty, or appear socially excluded, do you see? How many from non-white ethnic backgrounds? How many people wearing something that told you that they were Jewish, Muslim, Hindu or Buddhist? How many with

one of our failings in the recent past has been trying to make one size fit all in terms of inclusion and diversity. Some northern English cities have a large Asian population, so we might hope that, in time, Scouting would also have a large Asian membership in these places. Our challenge is how we make this a reality. In the West Highlands, residents of Asian origin are few and far between – but financial and social deprivation October/November 2013



Some of the milestones Scouting has achieved so far on the journey to becoming a broader, more inclusive and welcoming Movement

VISION T STATEMEN g utin In 2018, Sco erse iv will be as d nities mu as the com h in whic we live. is not hard to find. How can we include people with these challenges in our membership? One size definitely does not fit all, and we should not try to make it so. Let’s all try to do some people watching in the community where you live. Why not extend this research to better understand the make-up of your town or village? Then act. Only then will you help make our Vision statement real and truly make Scouting as diverse as the communities in which we live.

More info

Find more details at diversity. Our volunteer team of national Diversity Ambassadors works hard to support and advise Scouting on faith and beliefs, sexuality, disabilities and special needs, black and minority ethnic (BME) groups. Contact them at:

• In 2003, girls represented just 8% of our total youth membership. It’s now 18% with fewer than 2% of Scout Groups without girls. • You can carry on volunteering for Scouting beyond retirement age. Since 2003 there’s been no upper age limit for adult volunteers. • Training on diversity and inclusion has been a part of our Adult Training Scheme for more than a decade; it’s an integral part of the Wood Badge for all leaders, managers and supporters in Scouting. • We have fostered partnerships with organisations including Mencap, the National Deaf Children’s Society and Royal London Society for the Blind. • The Developments Grants Board (DGB) helps us reach out to marginalised groups. Find out more about the team’s work at • We’ve been working with the Youth United Foundation ( to support the development of Scouting in disadvantaged communities. • Our Scout Active Support Unit FLAGS supports lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender members. It represents the Movement at Pride marches all over the UK. • In 1997 there was just one Muslim Scout Group in the UK – there are now 45. Contact our dedicated Development Officer Syed Miah on, discover more about the Muslim Scout Fellowship at and support their effort to complete the mosque at Gilwell Park by visiting • Programmes Online at offers activities to help you increase awareness and understanding of all faiths among young people. • We’re committed to engaging with non-English speaking communities, as 2nd Wisbech Orchards has done – see page 18 to read about their work. A parent’s pack in Polish and accompanying leaflet are available via the Print Centre.



Find out more about the Scouts of the World award, and meet some Scout Network members who’ve already made a global impact

Forward thinking

An international award shared with more than 50 national Scout associations, SOWA has some very impressive credentials. It originates from the UN’s Millennium Declaration and resulting Millennium Development Goals; global targets for addressing extreme poverty and exclusion. It also cannily links to other awards, so you can use the SOWA to qualify for parts of the Queen’s Scout Award and the DofE. Now for the requirements. All a young person needs to qualify for


a SOWA – apart from an insatiable desire to learn about the world – is to be aged 18 to 25 and be a member of Scout Network. Follow our checklist opposite to find out how to sign up.

Make a difference

Although the aim of their voluntary project should be far-reaching, the distances travelled needn’t be. The award is designed to be a personal commitment to solving a problem related to development, environment or peace. And since

The overriding factor is that the project should be based on an issue they’re passionate about and it can take one of two forms: the young person can plan and develop a new project like an eco or health campaign, or they can support an existing project launched by the Scouting movement or another organisation – just as Birmingham Scouts Danny and Kalpanee (overleaf) did. The accompanying SOWA resource packs are full of tips to help with this difficult decision.

‘The award is designed to be a personal commitment to solving a problem related to development, environment or peace.’ many issues here in the UK are echoed around the world, it’s perfectly feasible for a young person to complete their SOWA project on their own doorstep as long as it follows the same theme as their Discovery – a preparatory residential event.

It goes without saying that lots of time and effort should go into planning the voluntary work; we’d recommend up to six months or longer, to make the process comparatively stress-free. The Discovery should give them some October/November 2013

Pictures: Alamy


utting-edge technologies have made the modern world a smaller place – and given young people not only an insatiable thirst to travel and experience other cultures, but also an urge to learn more about contemporary global issues. The Scouts of the World Award (SOWA) is a chance for Scout Network members in the UK to do just that: tackle a project focused on a topic they care deeply about and, along the way, develop a diverse range of everyday skills such as project management.

SCOUTS REAL OF Wimbledon’s co tted of THE TROOPERS WORLD volunteers helps

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placements can Environment-focused n and abroad tai be found around Bri

SOWA opens up a world of opportunities

Projects in the UK need volunteers to o

project ideas but it can still be a genuine challenge to decide on a final destination and aim. This is where a mentor comes in handy, helping a young person channel their ideas into a plan that’s practical and achievable. Clearly, Scouts will most probably have to raise funds for their project themselves, but if they’re heading overseas then The Scout Association’s International team may be able to help with a contribution from the International Fund. Head to members. for more information.

More info

To register interest and to download the Make the World a Better Place resources, go to If you are interested in supporting the award and running Discovery events across the country by joining the SOWA Scout Active Support Unit, please email the SASU manager at:

SOWA CHECKLIST Register with The Scout Association and obtain a SOWA passport; a kind of logbook of the volunteer’s experiences. Attend a special residential event known as a Discovery, lasting a minimum of four days and based on one or more of the three themes: development, environment or peace. This should get them thinking about their main volunteering project. Here they’ll also be assigned a mentor to support them through the SOWA process. With support from a mentor, finalise plans for voluntary service, based on the theme explored on the Discovery. Contribute to a minimum of two section meetings (or the youth section of another organisation) to talk about their theme. Undertake voluntary service in the UK or abroad, lasting a minimum of 14 days. If you plan to go abroad, follow the Visits Abroad process. The young people are encouraged to keep a diary or record of their experiences and take lots of photos. Record and evaluate experiences in the Scouts of the World passport. Meet with mentor and report on what they have achieved during the voluntary service. Hold an informal presentation and party for their Network to talk about their experiences and inspire others. After the evaluation and sign-off process, a young person can mentor future SOWA participants and join the worldwide SOWA Network.


Forward thinking




Danny and Kalpanee, both members of 64th Birmingham Scout Group, were among the first handful of Network members to achieve the Scouts of the World Award. Although there are limitless opportunities closer to home, they travelled to Nepal, Switzerland and Malawi for their voluntary service.


unforgettable experience as I got to observe so many people benefiting from good healthcare. ‘In my spare time I taught English to the local schoolchildren; another experience I will always treasure. The children had a tremendous amount of enthusiasm and energy for learning. ‘I met some truly inspirational people through doing the award, which has given me both inspiration and many ideas about what we can all do to help one another. I tried things I’d never done before – SOWA expanded my horizons and allowed me to step outside my comfort zone.’


‘Scouting has always enabled me to challenge myself from a very young age. I was looking for one final challenge; one with a difference and one that would push me, make me learn and help me grow. SOWA ticked all of those boxes.



‘I was lucky enough to complete my Discovery in Kandersteg, Switzerland, where my eyes were opened to a world of possibilities. It allowed me to identify a need in a community and create a plan to help, and I settled on Malawi for my voluntary service.  ‘During my six-month voluntary service I taught in a remote village primary school in northern Malawi and worked with locals on an environmental project, helping to construct a tree nursery. Every day I experienced new, jaw-dropping, awe-inspiring events, mixed with utterly heartbreaking and physically uncomfortable situations. ‘Without doubt, the experience was character-building time. Experiencing a new culture enabled me to share my knowledge with Malawians and they shared theirs with me. My aim was to help others, but I also came away feeling like I had learned more from them and about myself than I ever thought possible.’

Pictures: Alamy, Thinkstock

‘When I first heard about the award, I saw it as a brilliant challenge that would be both interesting and rewarding. ‘My project took me to a beautiful rural part of Nepal; a village called Lele, where I volunteered at a local healthcare outpost. It was really interesting to observe medicine in a less-wealthy country and how people, despite having little, seem to make the most of things. It made me appreciate our National Health Service more and more every day. ‘We also raised money to run a local health camp so that people who live too far from the healthcare outpost have better access to medicine. The Nepalese transport challenges make getting to the nearest health centre a real trial for people, so taking medicine to them is invaluable. ‘In my time with the team, around 200 patients were treated. It was an



October/November 2013


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‘Bright Sparks shows what kind of opportunities you get in Scouting’

Kayleigh has learned a lot on the project, such as vocal techniques and how recording studios work


with sound mixer Director Emma meets , Bright Sparks Alex, and Tony Lundon mber of Liberty X. project leader and a me TO SEE THE SCAN THIS PICTURE EO FINISHED MUSIC VID


October/November 2013


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Available on iTunes

Pre-order Let It Out from iTunes today – and to order your copies of the fundraising album visit:

Takeover Day



‘The Bright Sparks project is about young people taking the reins,’ says Tony Lundon. Takeover Day on 22 November gives young people the opportunity to get involved in decision-making at organisations across the UK. For info see takeover_day.

October/November 2013



An investiture is innately memorable – but some members really go above and beyond to make joining the Movement a totally unforgettable moment WORDS LEE GRIFFITHS

Illustration: Hannah Rollings


Talk about making the most of opportunities; Swinton & Pendlebury District made good use of its time on the way to a District trip in Europe. During the flight, and six and a half miles above Düsseldorf, the DC orchestrated an investiture with one of the District’s Explorers, much to the other passengers’ surprise. ‘Half the plane was filled with Scouts and their leaders; the other half of the plane didn’t know what was going on!’ Paul Brighouse, District Commissioner



During an expedition for the Chief Scout’s Platinum Award on the Isle of Wight, Prestwich and Whitefield Explorer Scout Unit celebrated the end of a fun-packed first day with a high-rise investiture; Explorers Daniel and John made their commitment in a chairlift. ‘The Explorers were invested on the chairlift at the Needles, which goes down to the beach at Alum Bay. It was great fun – but the Explorers enjoyed it more than the leaders!’ Thom Coverdale, Explorer Scout Leader


Pat Duncumb’s daring investiture into 16th Purley took place in the road on London’s Tower Bridge, as drivers sat and watched in amazement from their cars. Afterwards, Pat – now County DofE Adviser for Kent Scouts – and her fellow Scouts were escorted onto the pavement by a policeman. In hindsight, she admits maybe they should have asked permission. ‘The policeman told us that if we had asked first he would have organised stopping the traffic for us rather than us putting ourselves in danger!’ Pat Duncumb, County DofE Adviser October/November 2013



Wanting to renew its Scout Promise in style, Scorpion Explorer Scout Unit in Caverswall, Stoke-on-Trent, headed to its nearest swimming pool with scuba equipment. The Group then conducted their investiture at the bottom of the pool, uniforms and all. ‘The result of the investiture was a half-decent formation of Scouts bubbling their way through their Scout Promise. We all really enjoyed doing it and the Scouts have been badgering me to do it again.’ Kai Dean, Explorer Scout Leader


Scouts from 15th St Giles’ and St George’s of Newcastle-under-Lyme and Iceni Explorer Unit got to enjoy a breathtaking investiture during a trip to Adelboden in Switzerland. The Scout Group

travelled to the top of a mountain and the GSL, dressed as a tiger (for reasons unknown) conducted the bizarre but memorable investiture. ‘It was an investiture the Scouts will never forget: snow-capped mountains, sunshine and fabulous views.’ Barbara Davies, District Cub Scout Leader


Having arranged a tour of Westminster, 1st Shipley (Windhill) Explorer Scouts from West Yorkshire got the opportunity to invest one of its Scouts. Although there wasn’t time for a full-blown ceremony, the Group wasted no time in conducting the swiftest of investitures in the House of Commons chambers. ‘I know it was a ceremony the Scout will remember for a long time!’ Lee Farrow, Explorer Scout Leader


Sometimes, the most magical place for an investiture is right on your own doorstep, as 69th (Lower Weston) in Bath discovered. During a Group tour of the 7th-century Bath Abbey, leaders conducted an investiture at the very top, with stunning views across the city. ‘As a Cub Group, we like to try and find interesting places to go and invest new Cubs into the Pack.’ Jeffrey Wall, Cub Scout Leader


When Scouts from Pegasus Explorers in Clyde, Scotland travelled to Manchester for a Unit trip, they had plenty of chances, including a skydiving trip, to conduct a memorable investiture. But one of the football-mad Scouts had something different in mind; she



persuaded her leaders to invest her at Old Trafford football stadium, the iconic home of Manchester United. ‘We took a tour of Old Trafford as one of the girls in our Unit loves Man United – it felt like the perfect opportunity for an investiture and we conducted it in the changing rooms!’ Gordon Jack, Assistant Explorer Leader


Being one of the most beautiful parts of the country, the Peak District is full of idyllic places to conduct a Scout investiture. So 2nd Harpenden Scouts took full advantage and invested three Scouts while exploring some labyrinthine caves. ‘The three Scouts were invested deep in the caves and we were surrounded by a natural amphitheatre-style seating formed by dripping salt and water.’ Mike Mann, Explorer Scout and Young Leader


Danielle Lefort, a leader with 4th Shepshed Scouts, Leicestershire, bonded with Georgie Budding during


a British Sign Language (BSL) course; and so it made sense for Danielle to invest her friend into the Movement using their new-found skill. ‘Georgie was captivated by my tales of Scouting adventure and decided to join my Group as a volunteer. When I asked her how she wanted to be invested – she said she wanted to be invested by me at District camp, in sign language to mark how we met and the start of her Scout journey. It was scary but totally memorable! We now work together to teach sign language to Cubs.’ Danielle Lefort, Group Scout Leader


When Finley, a Beaver with 1st Rochdale Scout Group, was asked where he wanted to be invested during a District trip to Chester Zoo, he didn’t hesitate: the lion enclosure. One of the big cats looked on with interest (from behind a fence), but didn’t bother standing for the impromptu ceremony. ‘We caused a bit of interest on our trip, but we like to try and do things differently at our Colony.’ Jo Griffin, Beaver Scout Leader

And there’s more…

Other unique investitures you’ve told us about: • On the gun deck of HMS Belfast • Down a slide • On a climbing wall • On a bouncy castle • In the Channel Tunnel • On the London Eye • In an air vent • On a raft in the middle of a river • Under a waterfall

Where did you do it?

Up a tree? In a submarine? On a farmyard? Let us know about your memorable investitures at:

October/November 2013



Picture: Rob Scott

‘Scouting has changed my life and I want others to experience it’ October/November 2013



IMPACT Meet some inspiring young people and volunteers who reach out beyond Scouting to help others

‘I pass out unexpectedly, sometimes up to five times a day, which doctors think is due to a cardiac problem. At a Remembrance Sunday service in 2011, I fainted and fractured my skull in three places. I’ve lost the hearing in my left ear and I have a constant headache and sporadically feel unbalanced, so I walk into things. ‘A Scout has courage in all difficulties, so my health is only a problem if I allow it to be. When I faint I get back up and carry on. Scouting keeps me positive. I’ve continued to try new activities including caving and abseiling and competed at national level in shooting. I’ve signed up to do Silver DofE and hope to do Gold and my Queen’s Scout Award. ‘After my accident, I made it through my GCSEs and now I am studying animal management. My aim was always to become an RSPCA

inspector, but you need a driving licence and that looks unlikely. I haven’t lost hope. I hope I can find a job where I don’t need to drive. ‘As well as studying, I’m a parttime receptionist. I’m writing a poetry book and I’ve started my own business creating paracord survival bracelets. I’m also committed to raising awareness about hearing impairments. I’m currently training for the Royal Parks Half Marathon for The National Deaf Children’s Society. If you’re there, look out for me! ‘I’ve got lots to juggle but a Scout makes good use of time. Scouting has given me so much and volunteering is an opportunity to give something back.’ Find out more about Megan’s business at CordWorxUK and sponsor her at


Pictures: Rob Scott

Megan, 17, a Young Leader at 1st Tolworth Scout Group, raises awareness about deafness while studying and running her own business.

‘Scouting is about being seen in and assisting communities’ SCOUTING HEROES

NESST’s all-weather emergency response vehicle is a valuable resource for the wider community

District Commissioner Keith Morris for Mansfield is a member of Nottinghamshire Emergency Scout Support Team (NESST), which serves its community in times of need. ‘NESST has been going since 1987 when four Scout leaders, including myself, realised there was a communication gap that needed plugging. We bought portable twoway radios, then four mobile units to provide radio communications for Scouting and Guiding events including District camps and overnight walks. ‘As the team and events grew, we were donated an ex-British Coal ambulance so we could offer firstaid services. We became one of the first Scout Active Support Units in Nottinghamshire, with myself as team leader, assisted by Alistair

Bow (another founder member). Fast forward to 2013 and we have 25 team members, 60 two-way radios, indoor and outdoor PA equipment and a 4x4 emergency response vehicle called NESSY. ‘As well as assisting Scouting and non-Scouting Groups who are planning large events, the team is recognised by the county council and police; we’re part of their emergency plans. We’re frequently called out during bad weather, particularly snow. We might help deliver meals to the elderly and vulnerable or transport district nurses around to visit rural patients. There is nothing

better than being greeted by a smiley, appreciative face. ‘Our promise states “to help other people” and this is our way of helping in times of need. Scouting is not just about knots and camping but about being seen in and assisting the communities in which we live.’ Find out more at uk/nesst. ‘My number one Scouting hero is my Pack’s Akela, Jim Hollinshead. There seems to be nothing he can’t do. He has limitless energy and his enthusiasm is infectious. As well as developing an exciting programme, he encourages Cubs and families to get involved. Thanks to Jim, all our Cubs end up feeling like heroes. Jane McKenzie, Cub Pack Assistant



‘Helping others to get online is empowering’

Picture: Ray Gibson

Luke Lawrence, a Group Scout Leader with Chilvers Coton Scout Group in Warwickshire, set up an internet café to increase digital engagement in his community. ‘In 2007, some fellow leaders and I identified an opportunity to give Scouts supported internet access and hone their digital skills. Using funding from my employer E.ON, and Nuneaton District Scouts, we rebuilt and reconditioned laptops so our Scouts could speak to Groups across the world. Originally a oneoff for JOTA–JOTI, it just snowballed. ‘We have helped thousands of Scouts and members of the public, including the elderly. We give adults the skills to facilitate Scouting and teach young people about the internet. We get hundreds of people during JOTI, connecting with others all over the world. In collaboration with the ShelterBox programme Go Global, our young people communicated with Scouts in Brazil following the devastating floods there – a unique opportunity to help them understand life in places that experience difficulties.’

Tom juggles nursing and volunteering – not only for Scouts but other organisations, too

‘There’s so much to gain from volunteering’ Student Volunteer of the Year award-winner Tom Holt, a Cub Leader, finds the time to volunteer with other charities and study nursing. ‘I’ve been working to support other young people since I was in my teens and was a prefect. Since then, I’ve worked with 11 different charities – and volunteering is a massive part of my life. ‘I volunteer with Ormskirk 30th Scout Group. I’m also a trained Childline counsellor and mentor an 11-year-old boy for the charity Action for Children. I fit all this around my full-time degree in children’s nursing at Edge Hill University. ‘The five hours a week I spend with Scouting are amazing. I’m good at managing my time and thankfully everything else in my life, including my hospital shifts, is flexible. I actually help out across the sections, because it’s more

accommodating when I’m doing a nursing placement. Prioritising is important. If I don’t have much time I’ll find out what’s planned for the Group: so I might not go along if it’s a sit-down activity but if they need an extra leader on a hike, I will be there. ‘Winning Student Volunteer of the Year in February 2013 was overwhelming: I was in a state of shock when I received the actual award at Westminster. Students and young people can learn so much from volunteering; communication and time-management skills, for instance, are vital for your job prospects. But in essence, it’s sociable. I’ve met some great people along the way and encouraged friends to get involved, too.’



Jessica (centre, rear) overcame childhood bullying and hopes to protect others from it in future

‘When you help others it makes you feel good and them feel better’ Alongside Scouting Jessica, 15, an Explorer Scout with Stoke Climsland Scout Group, volunteers in community sports and with St John Ambulance. ‘I’ve always wanted to go into primary school teaching – mainly because I want to try to prevent bullying. I experienced it myself but didn’t get the support I needed. I’d like to stop things like that happening to others. ‘Scouting has made me more confident, willing to try new things and meet new people. It’s like being in a family; there’s always someone to support you when you’re low and share your concerns and successes. ‘As well as Scouts, I volunteer with St John Ambulance Badgers. I started as a cadet and helped out at events, but now lead sessions; I’ve just been

teaching seven-year-olds CPR. Sport is a big thing in my life too. It’s enjoyable, keeps you fit and is stress-relieving. I help teach football, steward at a local rugby club and I’m about to start rugby touchline referee training, too. ‘My mum nominated me for a Community Action Through Sport (CATS) award (communityaction – I hadn’t realised that I was making that much of a difference! Through this, I got to carry the Olympic torch last year. Words can’t explain how honoured I felt. ‘I’ve got lots of goals, like completing my DofE Awards and

Explorer Belt Expedition. I’m hoping to start a choir club at my local primary school to build confidence in young people and I’ve applied to join a steering group for CATS to encourage others to volunteer. ‘When you help others it makes you feel good and makes them feel better. When I felt lonely I wished I had someone to keep an eye on me – I hope I can be that person for someone else.’

More info

Do you know a Scout, volunteer or Group that’s changing lives? Let us know at scouting.magazine@


Scan this page to see more of this interview

‘SCOUTING IS PERFECTLY PLACED TO MAKE AN EVEN BIGGER DIFFERENCE’ The new Chief Executive of The Scout Association, Matt Hyde, talks about the future for Scouting – and his own Scouting past

Matt’s grandfather and his gallantry award (above)


Tell us about your background. I grew up in Ramsey, Cambridgeshire, above our family furniture store. My family were active in the community and Scouting was a part of this. My grandfather was a keen Scout and I vividly remember he had a certificate signed by B-P. I now know it to be a gallantry award for saving a boy from drowning in 1921. I invested as a Cub with 1st Ramsey in 1983. Scouts gave me so many ‘firsts’ – it was the first time I fundraised, volunteered and was given a leadership position. It was so important to my development. My brothers were more outdoorsy and Scouting gave them as much, if not more, than school. They both got Chief Scout’s Awards, which had a big impact on their lives. I’ve always been attracted to leadership roles, and Scouting must have had some bearing on

that. When I went to uni I became captain of a football team, then club captain and then president of the students’ union. That led to a position as president of the University of London Union and later, after other roles, to the National Union of Students. Like Scouts, the student movement changes lives. It’s part of the ‘doughnut’ around core teaching and learning that makes a difference to people’s outlooks and skills. Why is this an important time for Scouting? The mission and values of Scouting are enduring. Many of B-P’s messages are still relevant. He saw low levels of aspiration and attainment, poverty, lack of mobility and cohesion – all issues we still contend with. The UK has huge challenges, but Scouting is perfectly placed to make an even bigger difference to society, while having fun. October/November 2013


Our ethos of non-formal learning – learning by doing – is a powerful tool and a potent force for social mobility. People refer to ‘softer’ skills as if they’re not as important. But these are what get people jobs, help them get on in life and build relationships. The notion of building rounded individuals is key. What has struck you most about the Movement? Our real strength is our volunteer base. The Olympics changed the understanding of what volunteering looks like, and we’ve been able to capitalise on that energy. Unlike other voluntary organisations, we combine structured activities with flexible opportunities. Volunteering is on the rise, but we need to recognise that some people are more able to volunteer than others, and take advantage of the latent demand among 16-25-year-olds. They are keen to make a difference, but also recognise the need to enhance skills and become more employable by gaining different experiences. Your highlights so far? Getting out to see where people are delivering. It’s important to listen, learn, test ideas and sell what we’re trying to achieve at a national level. Recently I was in Wales with Explorers who embodied our aim to be a Movement ‘shaped by young people’. There was so much dynamism and active learning from each other. I sat with a mum, whose son has cerebral palsy, and she told me how Scouting had changed his life. He was talking more, making friends, getting more out of life. And in north London I met young people from different backgrounds who had come together for a community project. This social mixing enables them to intuitively understand difference.

Matt joined the Sco uting Movement in 1983 as a keen eight-year-old Right One of his badges

And your hopes for the Movement? A clear vision galvanises people into action. The Vision Towards 2018 sets out our agenda – now we must consider how to make it easily understood and exciting so people are motivated and consider what success will look like. We must extend

Girlguiding and Scouts are in many of the same meetings, saying the same things, and ultimately we share the same ‘parents’, so where we can mutually

‘The capacity to evolve has ensured we stay relevant, but we’ve got to keep moving’ understanding of non-formal learning and go to new areas to make Scouting more accessible. It won’t be a broad change from our core values. We have already modernised by opening up to girls and adapting the uniform to allow multi-faith groups to join. The capacity to evolve has ensured we stay relevant, but we must keep moving. Having said that, heritage is important. There’s something powerful at the heart of Scouting and you tinker with that at your peril. But, given my experiences in the youth and education sector, we can learn from other organisations, perhaps by using digital technologies, changing our marketing, or looking at new ways to deliver the programme. Collaboration is important to reach new audiences. For example,

benefit we should work together, without stepping on each other’s toes. We have an opportunity to ensure that young people shape the future of Scouting. They’re used to influencing the world around them and have the ideas and insights to ensure we remain relevant. In many ways they’re already at the heart of the Movement – making someone a Sixer or a Patrol Leader instils leadership. We’ve always done it, so let’s amplify those voices throughout Scouting.

More info

Read more online at magazine. Look out for Matt’s blog on – and you can also follow him on Twitter @matthyde.








Advice and know-how to inspire and inform VOLUNTEER IN PROFILE

‘Scouting has fuelled my adventurous spirit’ Scout Leader and circus tutor Wez Swain has Scouting to thank for his amazing adventures


joined Scouting at the age of eight, which really fuelled my adventurous spirit. My career has certainly been influenced by this. Years ago I was doing an apprenticeship I didn’t enjoy, so after finishing that I found a job as an outdoor pursuits instructor. I travelled the world, teaching everything from climbing to mountain biking in the likes of Scotland, New Zealand and the US. It was thanks to Scouting I got into these things in the first place, so after I came back I got involved in my local Group again, 2nd Torpoint in Cornwall. I am eager for my Scouts to experience international adventure. In 2009 I was selected to be a Jamboree Leader

for the Cornish Unit and worked alongside 40 amazing Scouts. We managed to raise £80,000 to go to Sweden for the 22nd World Jamboree. Walking is a passion of mine. I’ve walked the 630-mile South West Coast Path, surviving on just pasties; I wrote a book called The Power of a Pasty about it, to raise money.

I’ve always wanted to do it. We’ve been training in Norway and are hoping to go in April 2014, depending on fundraising. The plan is to conquer the last two degrees of latitude, which is about 140 miles. I balance volunteering with a fulltime job as a circus tutor. That’s down to Scouting as well! To mark one hundred years of Scouting, I was asked to run circus skills at a centenary camp and teach a Circus Activity Badge for some Groups – and my career evolved from there. There are so many amazing opportunities through Scouting. Hopefully the Scouts who I help to experience adventure will do the same for the next generation.

Next year, I have a truly unique walk planned. I’ll be going on the first-ever Scout expedition to the geographic North Pole with three Network members.

More info This photo was taken at Kernow, 2013. To access the Kernow gallery, download Layar to your smartphone and point it at this page.

To read more about Wez’s North Pole exhibition, visit and on Facebook: Find about his circus skills at



Never fear – we’re here to help solve your Scouting queries

Can volunteers share their Scouting roles?

Jacob Anderson, Group Scout Leader Kester Sharpe, Deputy UK Commissioner (Adult Support), says: Yes, they can. Rolesharing is actually a great way to offer volunteers flexible roles depending on the time they have and their particular interests. Rather than just one person doing a role,

two or more people can split the role between them. Most Scouting roles can be shared; the important thing to do is work out how best to split the role. One way to share a section leader role between three people, for example, is for each to be responsible for one meeting every three weeks. Alternatively, the tasks within the role could be split so that one leader is responsible for programme planning, one for record keeping and one for communication. Consider the time, strengths and interests that the volunteers have to offer, and be sure others understand who is doing what.

Which outdoor activities should I avoid doing with Cubs because of their age? Christopher Quinn, Assistant Cub Scout Leader

Pat Gilks, Scout Information Centre Adviser, says: The Scout Association does not bar any activity by age, but some providers may impose age restrictions based on the suitability of equipment and the young people’s skills and maturity. Assessing risk is important. For example, camping during winter is open to all ages, but it’s unlikely younger members will have the quality of equipment needed. Beavers and Cubs will be doing more advanced activities when they become Scouts and Explorers, so the activity should be aimed at the correct level. This will ensure progression and give them something to look forward to.

Do I need to be in uniform to be insured?

Amanda Miles, Group Scout Leader

Don’t worry – if you’re not wearing your Scout uniform, you’re still insured


Ralph Doe, Unity Liability and Insurance Adviser, says: No, this is not an insurance requirement. You wouldn’t go swimming in full uniform, but members are still insured while October/November 2013

volunteer swimming! The Scout Association through Unity (Scout Insurance Services) arranges Personal Accident and Medical Expenses and Public Liability to cover its Members. To be covered, you need to do three things: follow POR; be taking part in (or travelling to or from) an authorised Scouting activity; and be a member of TSA (to be covered under the personal accident policy). See scoutinsurance. for details. A variety of quality bushcraft knives are available






e u s s i g Thebi Should I set up social media accounts for my Group and how can I do so safely? Rick Edwards, Explorer Scout Leader

What’s a good all-round bushcraft knife for Scouts? George Fernandez, Assistant Scout Leader

Barry Smith, bushcraft instructor and Assistant Scout Leader, says: A simple fixed-blade sheath knife is safe, reliable and value for money. Try two models from Mora of Sweden: The Craftline Q 511 is a basic carbon steel knife with a plastic sheath (around £5). The Companion 840 (carbon steel) or 860 (stainless steel) are also great, with a robust plastic sheath and rubberised handle. Expect to pay £12. Ask for a Scout discount when bulk buying.

Samantha Marks, National Development Officer (Safeguarding), says: Leaders have a key role to play in keeping young people safe online. Social media should be used within a Scouting context and be age, language and content appropriate. Involve leaders, young people and parents so you can agree on guidelines and always follow the ‘Young People First’ code of practice (Yellow Card). For more tips, visit

Natasha Milsted, Essex Scouts Social Media Manager, says: Young people live and breathe social media so they should help steer what the Facebook group will help them achieve. Make parents/guardians aware of your plans. Cyberbullying is an important issue so discuss with the young people what constitutes inappropriate behaviour. Prompt your young people to get involved in social media and be prepared for them to take over!

Helen Bacon, Assistant Explorer Scout Leader, says: At Rotherham Explorer Scouts we have had a Twitter feed for some time (@xtremeexplorers). We post about activities and it keeps parents informed. We also use Facebook. The group is private and all requests to join are checked before being accepted. Any comments are vetted too. Remember, the minimum age for being a member of Facebook is 13.

Over to you…

Do you have a query about Scouting, or experience you could share as a member of our reader panel? If the answer to either question is yes, email us at with your questions and advice.









In the next instalment of the series on leadership and management, Programme and Development Adviser Celia King talks to Isabelle Mills, District Commissioner, Cabot District, about using resources Celia: How do you ensure you provide good quality Scouting in your District? Isabelle: When I took on my District Commissioner role nearly two years ago, I found it was essential to work with and listen to the District team and also other adults involved in the District to find out what the young people wanted. These adults are the ‘front line’, and provide me with an accurate forecast of what the young people in our District want and need to do. I now make sure that I talk directly to the leaders and encourage new and old alike to get involved in District planning and the delivery of good quality Scouting. From doing this, I’ve found leaders’ consistently come forward with ideas and plans that are sustainable and which they are willing to take on. Celia: How do you ensure that information is passed on in the District and members are kept in the loop? Isabelle: I have tried several different ways of communicating, and the one that currently works for our District is termly leaders meetings, together with published section reports. Each section sends in information to the DDC, which is then put into the report and distributed to all leaders and Group Scout Leaders in the District. I also hold two GSL meetings a year. These meetings are kept to a tight schedule and run with a detailed agenda, as


As District Commissioner, Isabelle keeps in touch with leaders for their valuable input

GSLs are busy people and don’t want to be sitting in yet another meeting! In addition to this we have a District website, and I plan to start highlighting District events on there. Celia: What advice would you give to others looking to do similar? Isabelle: I would say that it’s important not to rush into anything – take time to find out what is really important. In my District I’ve found that it’s important to fill leader vacancies before filling Assistant District Commissioner roles.

I keep my core District team fresh and ensure that it evolves to meet the needs of the District. Once you have the right people and resources in place, you can then get on with providing good quality Scouting to the young people in your area.

More info

Find out more about leadership and management in Scouting, view case study videos and sign up for support webinars at

October/November 2013


How to have a brilliant Bonfire Night Wrap up warm this November and make the most of the fireworks with your Group


Make sure you plan ahead to ensure everyone in your Group has a safe Bonfire Night


October/November 2013



ovember is the season of rockets, bangers and sparklers as both Bonfire Night and the Hindu festival of Diwali are celebrated. There’s something incredibly magical about watching the skies light up and hearing the crackle of fireworks – but whether you’re organising a community fundraising display or a small party for your Scouts, it’s essential you’re fully prepared. Around one thousand fireworkrelated injuries occur in the UK each year and approximately half involve children. To ensure that your Group enjoys the festivities, check out our



of buying fireworks (you can’t buy or use ‘adult’ fireworks if you’re under 18). To increase their understanding, why not arrange a visit to a local fire station or ask your Group to design a firework safety poster?

Safety essentials

When building a bonfire, make sure it is at least 18m (60ft) away from houses, trees, hedges, fences or sheds. Check for pets and wildlife – especially hedgehogs – before lighting. Use domestic firelighters when lighting a bonfire – never use petrol, paraffin or other flammable liquids and never burn dangerous rubbish such as aerosols.

‘Don’t leave risk management until the day of your display.’ health and safety tips – and our brilliant activity ideas to make your evening go with a bang.

Planning ahead

Don’t leave risk management until the day of your display. Planning ahead will pay off and minimise the chance of accidents. Talk to your Group about firework safety guidelines and the importance of following the Firework Code. The Health and Safety Executive’s guide ‘Giving Your Own Firework Display: How to Run and Fire It Safely’ is essential reading. Download for free from Whatever the scale of your event, you should also seek advice on insurance – call Unity on 0845 0945 703 or email scouts@ Check out the factsheet on firework displays in the resources section of – from choosing your venue and selecting fireworks to crowd control, Unity’s checklist will help you conduct a full assessment ahead of your event. Make sure your Group fully understands the risks and legalities

As for fireworks, the Firework Code is crammed with common-sense tips and should be your oracle. Ensure they comply with British Safety Standards and store in a closed metal box – remove them one at a time before replacing lid. Do not allow spectators to bring their own fireworks, but do recruit at least one experienced person to manage the display. Ensure that any failed fireworks are not tried again. Sparklers are one thing that Scouts get involved with. They get roasting hot (reaching a temperature 20 times the boiling point of water) so should always be handled with gloves. They should also be lit one at a time and always be held at arm’s length. As stated in the Firework Code, make sure your Scouts realise that they should never give sparklers to a child under five; and that spent sparklers should be disposed of in water or sand. There’s a wealth of advice online: see the firework safety section of and The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents’ website




‘A risk assessment should look beyond the event site. Every year we handle claims for injuries to spectators and for property damage from neighbours near Scout firework displays. Scout firework events are covered by The Scout Association’s Public Liability Policy. You could consider, for example, personal accident insurance for nonmember helpers involved. Contact us to discuss the insurance you’ll need.’ Ralph Doe, Unity Liability and Insurance Adviser

Cracking facts

• The Chinese made the first fireworks in the 800s – bamboo shoots filled with gunpowder. They exploded them at new year to scare off evil spirits. • King Henry VII’s wedding in 1486 featured the first recorded fireworks in England. Queen Elizabeth I created the post of fireworks master. • With over 77,000 fireworks, the State of Kuwait’s 50th anniversary of the Constitution in November 2012 stands as the world’s largest display. • A rocket can reach speeds of 150mph and a firework shell can reach as high as 200 metres.

Awesome activities

• Try the high-energy ‘rockets and sparklers’ game from Programmes Online at scouts. Get your Beavers to run around or jump up and down in the style of different fireworks. • Get your Group to create art based on fireworks using glitter, paint and black paper. • Tell your Group the story of Guy Fawkes and discuss the meaning of Diwali, the Hindu festival of lights. • Bonfire toffee, Parkin cake and toffee apples are all sweet treats traditionally eaten on Bonfire Night and could be made and sold by your Scouts to raise funds.



London’s green spaces TAKE A HIKE


Enjoy London’s skyline as well as experiencing its beautiful green parks


a wealth London has ks – visit of other wal for or n. do walklon ee fr d ideas an e bl da oa nl w do route maps.

Words: Steve Backhouse. Picture: Alamy

Explore London’s extensive parks on this walk from the northern suburbs to the heart of the capital

October/November 2013




walk food


London’s green spaces Map: London A to Z street map Scouting classification: Terrain zero





Distance: 15½ km (9½ miles) Total ascent: 100 metres (330 feet) Start: Hampstead underground station Finish: Westminster underground station

For more walks see uk/magazine. For advice on all adventurous activities, see our a–z of activities at


The route Starting from Hampstead tube station [Start] head north onto Hampstead Heath. From the top of Parliament Hill there’s a great view of the city below – a good opportunity to spot the famous sights that you’ll see later in the walk. Descend past Hampstead Ponds [A] to Gospel Oak station [B], then make your way through Kentish Town to Camden Lock [C] and its bustling market. From here follow the towpath of the Regent’s Canal for a short distance to London Zoo [D] then cross Regent’s Park to Baker Street station [E]. Now in the heart of the capital, make your way along Baker Street, looking out for Sherlock Holmes’s House at number 221B, then past the green oasis of Portman Square to Marble Arch [F]. Cross the busy road into Hyde Park and make your way to the Serpentine Bridge [G] and the Diana Memorial Fountain. Cross Hyde Park Corner into Green Park and head for Buckingham Palace [H]. Finally walk through St James’s Park to finish at Westminster tube station [Finish] beside Westminster Abbey and Parliament.

B Start





Option 2: Shorter walks


More info

Option 1: Longer route

London’s extensive public transport network means that this walk can be easily adapted. The sections over Hampstead Heath (2½ miles), the Regent’s Canal and Regent’s Park (2 miles), and from Marble Arch to Westminster (3 miles) all make great shorter walks in their own right. Why not combine a walk with a visit to one of the many famous sights along the route?


G Finish








This product includes mapping licensed from Ordnance Survey ® with the permission of the Controller of Her Majesty’s Stationery Office. © Crown Copyright 2005. All rights This product includesreserved. mapping licensed fromPU Ordnance Survey ® with permission of theby Controller Her Mapping Majesty'ssoftware. Stationery Office. © Crownsee Copyright 2005. All rights reserved. License Number License Number 100040361. This map was the generated and printed TrackLogsof Digital For more information 100040361. This map was generated and printed by TrackLogs Digital Mapping software. For more information see









Reader recipe KERRY HENNEGAN’S


Assistant Scout Leader Kerry Hennegan adds some spice to Scout camp

Picture: Thinkstock

About the chef

‘I’m an ASL with 232nd Scout Group in Cole Valley South, Birmingham. I love cooking and did it for a living once. With Scouting I can still practise. We should provide young people (and adult volunteers!) with good quality, healthy, nutritious food, to give them enough energy to enjoy any event to the fullest.’

Ingredients Serves 10

• Fresh green chillies, finely chopped (seeds left in) 3-4 • Cumin seeds 40g • Turmeric 15g • Whole garlic bulb, finely chopped 1 • Fenugreek powder (methi) 15g • Fresh ginger, grated (leave the skin on) 4-5cm piece • Onions chopped as small as possible 15 • Cooking oil • Chopped tomatoes 6 tins • Chicken breasts 8

You can put whatever extra ingredients you want into the basic sauce: any kind of meat or veg. Non-curry lovers usually like this as it’s a bit different and isn’t too greasy or spicy.


Heat the oil in a large pan and throw in the cumin seeds and allow to sizzle for a few seconds. Lean back slightly when you do this – the smell is extremely powerful.


Add chillies, fenugreek, turmeric and ginger. Mix and cook for about a minute. Add garlic and stir.


Add the onions and mix well with the spices; cook until translucent. Cover the pan and leave to cook. Keep

an eye on it and add more oil if you need to.


While the onions cook, cut the chicken into small pieces so it goes a little further. You can add it into the onion mix to cook, or cook separately and add towards the end if catering for veggies.


Add the tinned tomatoes and leave to simmer for as long as you can. Serve with rice and naan/pitta bread, or jacket potatoes.









Reader recipe KERRY HENNEGAN’S


Assistant Scout Leader Kerry Hennegan adds some spice to Scout camp

Picture: Thinkstock

About the chef

‘I’m an ASL with 232nd Scout Group in Cole Valley South, Birmingham. I love cooking and did it for a living once. With Scouting I can still practise. We should provide young people (and adult volunteers!) with good quality, healthy, nutritious food, to give them enough energy to enjoy any event to the fullest.’

Ingredients Serves 10

• Fresh green chillies, finely chopped (seeds left in) 3-4 • Cumin seeds 40g • Turmeric 15g • Whole garlic bulb, finely chopped 1 • Fenugreek powder (methi) 15g • Fresh ginger, grated (leave the skin on) 4-5cm piece • Onions chopped as small as possible 15 • Cooking oil • Chopped tomatoes 6 tins • Chicken breasts 8

You can put whatever extra ingredients you want into the basic sauce: any kind of meat or veg. Non-curry lovers usually like this as it’s a bit different and isn’t too greasy or spicy.


Heat the oil in a large pan and throw in the cumin seeds and allow to sizzle for a few seconds. Lean back slightly when you do this – the smell is extremely powerful.


Add chillies, fenugreek, turmeric and ginger. Mix and cook for about a minute. Add garlic and stir.


Add the onions and mix well with the spices; cook until translucent. Cover the pan and leave to cook. Keep

an eye on it and add more oil if you need to.


While the onions cook, cut the chicken into small pieces so it goes a little further. You can add it into the onion mix to cook, or cook separately and add towards the end if catering for veggies.


Add the tinned tomatoes and leave to simmer for as long as you can. Serve with rice and naan/pitta bread, or jacket potatoes.



DAME SARAH STOREY The Paralympic champion cyclist and former swimmer says we should all strive to achieve extraordinary things Have you always been sporty?

My parents had me playing in the garden from as soon as I could stand up. We have always been a sporty family – playing cricket, football and racquet sports was

doing something you love. I hope public attitudes to Paralympic sports have changed since London 2012, but let’s wait and see how Rio and the Games beyond that are received.

‘If you only ever do ordinary things you will always be ordinary.’ something my sister, brother and I all did from an early age. Our parents just wanted us all to enjoy a fit and active lifestyle. I loved being outside and always loved the competitive element of sport and so when I started at a sporty primary school, I was in my element.

Like sport, Scouting is about having fun and amazing experiences. Why is it so important for young people to enjoy everyday adventures?

It helps a person develop their personality and social skills, as well as providing the opportunity to establish coping strategies in a variety of situations. Specifically sport and Scouting help people learn valuable life skills that they never forget.

Picture: Getty

You’ve achieved so many accolades already – what’s your next goal? I have the permanent ambition of being a successful defending champion, so Rio 2016 is the end goal of the next three years. Between now and then there are world titles to defend. It is easy to stay motivated when you are


What’s it like now you are a household name?

I don’t really see myself as a household name, so I’m not really sure. It is lovely when people congratulate you and have accolades bestowed on you, but ultimately I am the same girl I was before all the attention in summer 2012. It is always lovely to meet the people who have cheered you on and hear their memories of your races.

You’re also a motivational speaker – what’s the best advice you’ve ever been given?

If you only ever do ordinary things you will always be ordinary. To achieve extraordinary things you need to be prepared to do extraordinary things to get there. An ordinary person does the same as everyone else, but an extraordinary person does new things and stuff others wouldn’t dream of.

What’s your advice to members who have big dreams for the future? Go for it! The only limit is your own mind.

October/November 2013

Scouting Scotland October/November 2013  

October/November 2013 issue of Scouting Scotland magazine, the official publication of Scouts Scotland.