This information is to help you to know what lies ahead, what you may expect of us and what we will expect of you. If there is anything you are unsure about, please feel free to ask any of the Section Leaders.
Scouting is a worldwide movement that has shaped the development of youth and adults for over 100 years. Scouts are in every part of our community, and Scouts is the biggest and most successful youth organisation in Australia, with more than 60,000 members from a wide range of cultural, religious and educational backgrounds and abilities enjoy an almost unlimited range of activities.
The aim of Scouting is to encourage the physical, intellectual, social and spiritual development of young people so they may play a constructive role in society as responsible citizens and as members of their local and international communities. This aim is achieved through a strong and active program that inspires young people to do their best and to always be prepared.
Scouting is a community affair. Scout Groups are formed and maintained by the community because parents believe in the benefits that Scouting has to offer and want to make it available to their children.
We achieve this through:
· Voluntary membership of uniformed Group, which, guided by adult Leaders of Youth is increasingly self governing in its successive age groups.
· Commitment to a code of living expressed in the Scout Promise and Law.
· The provision of a wide range of attractive, constructive and challenging activities, including opportunities for adventure and exploration both indoors and outdoors.
· The provision of opportunities for leadership and responsibility.
· Learning by doing.
· Encouragement of activity in small groups.
· An award scheme that encourages participation in a full range of activities and provides recognition of individual achievements.
This formula has survived for more than 100 years! The principles of Scouting are consistently proven to be as relevant today as they were when Scouting began in 1907.
The Scout Movement consists of five sections:
· Joeys for ages 6 - 8yo
· Cubs for ages 7.5 – 11yo
· Scouts for ages 10.5 – 15yo
· Venturers for ages 14.5 – 18yo
· Rovers for ages 17.5 – 26yo
A Scout Group is the local area organization that offers different levels of Scouting to various ages. A full Group consists of five Sections called a Joey Mob, a Cub Scout Pack, a Scout Troop, a Venturer Unit and a Rover Crew.
Air Scouts Canberra Group currently has Joey, Cub, Scout and Venturer Sections.
Each Mob, Pack, Troop or Unit is under the control of a qualified Leader of Youth, helped by Assistant Leaders and Adult Helpers. The Group as a whole is managed and guided by a person known as the Group Leader.
Scouting is definitely fun, and it also prepares young people for life in the adult world by teaching responsibility for their own actions and progress. These achievements lay a solid foundation for the success of our future Australian leaders. But don’t tell the kids they’re learning - they think they’re just having fun!
No matter the age of the participant, Scouts provides fun and exciting programs that promote active learning. Whether the young boys and girls are canoeing, camping, visiting museums or helping their local community, the activity is sure to teach them about themselves and the world around them.
Each year, all sections of Scouts learn to share responsibilities and to live with each other through adventures set in the outdoors. Camping, abseiling, caving, horseback riding, fishing, rock climbing and diving are just a few of the exciting experiences that a Scout may have achieved in his or her time as a youth member.
Scouts challenge their minds as well as their bodies. Not everyone looks for the outdoor buzz all the time, so Scouts have challenging activities linked with the internet and amateur radio, performance arts such as singing, dancing, and acting and awards linked to citizenship, community service and personal spiritual development.
Scouting makes a direct and positive impact on the community by teaching positive values and leadership skills to youth. Every year, Scouts and their leaders contribute thousands of volunteer hours to their local communities. Sharing time with the aged in the local community, helping with Clean Up Australia Day, Harmony Day and planting trees to help with the Murray Darling River Rescue are just a few examples of the commitment Scouts make to their communities.
Before your child can participate in any Scout meetings you will need to complete an Application for Youth Membership form, this will give automatic insurance cover for your child whilst they are deciding if Scouting is for them. There is also a Free Trial period of six weeks, before paying the membership fees. This will give you and your child a chance to enjoy Scouting before you make a financial commitment.
During the initial six weeks, the Section Leader will discuss a date for Investiture. Joining and Registration Fees are payable at this time. Your child is then registered as a member of the Scout Association.
The Joining Fee is a one off fee, while the Registration Fee is paid annually, as advised by the Group. Each member of the Movement is registered with Scouts Australia, ACT Branch and is covered by insurance upon payment of the necessary fees.
Naturally with Scouting being fundamentally an outdoors-based programme, there will be camps, hikes, etc., from time to time normally over 2 or 3 days, which your child will want to attend. The cost of these activities is an extra expense to yourself but you can be sure that we carefully aim to keep the price of such activities to a minimum.
A shirt and scarf is all that makes up the basic Scout uniform. The shirt can be purchased from Snowgum stores (Lonsdale Street, Braddon is closest). Scarves and badges earned under the award scheme are provided at no additional cost. Shorts or long trousers may be worn depending on the weather and activity. Sunsmart hats are required for outdoor activities in during periods of other than low UV radiation.
A Scout Group is entirely self-funded. The expenses of a Scout Group are various. Apart from the purchase of badges, certificates etc., the Group must also meet the cost of maintaining camping and activity equipment as well as paying for and maintaining the Scout Hall itself. Naturally we also have electricity, insurance and the like to pay.
As well as the general Group running costs, there is the cost of providing new equipment and resources such as tents, ropes, cooking gear, game equipment, etc. There are also Leader training costs which are met by the Group.
The most important aspect of parent involvement is the encouragement you give to your child. The boys and girls who get the most out of Scouting are those who put the most into it. All children have times when they need a gentle push, and certainly times when they need some help. This is where you come in.
If your child wants to do some test-passing or earn a badge, please go through the requirements and check that he or she has the knowledge needed and that all aspects of the test are covered. If your child hasn't done anything for a while, you may need to offer some extra encouragement to get started. The pride on their faces when they come to the front of parade to receive their badges makes the effort well worthwhile.
Scouting is a voluntary organization, and we do rely heavily on parent support. The support given will depend on the individual circumstances of each family. Areas in which regular help is needed are:-
· Join the Support Committee: This is not an onerous task. The really hard work of building the Scout Hall and providing major resources has already been done by past committees. It really only involves a meeting every couple of months: helping to manage the resources of our Group. It is expected that every family will be represented on the committee for at least one term (normally two years) during their child’s Scouting career. Don’t leave it until your child is almost ready to leave.
· Help to clean / maintain our Scout Hall and equipment: It is important that the place in which our children gather be maintained in a clean hygienic fashion. Likewise, the equipment we use needs the occasional TLC.
· Become an Adult Helper: There are occasions when the Leaders can do with an extra pair of hands, eyes and ears. This may be needed when a Leader is working alone or if the activity warrants or transporting the children to/ from various activities. If we call for a little extra help, it is good to know that there are parents willing to assist.
· Become a uniformed Leader of Youth: Leadership is not for everyone, but if it interests you, please speak to any one of the Leaders. They will tell you that they get just as much fun out of it as do the kids, and a very real sense of achievement as well as doing something worthwhile for our youth and the community. Remember, there is no such thing as a professional Scout Leader. Most Leaders are just a mum or dad like you, but the Scout Association provides wonderful training that equips you to be Leaders and without Leaders we wouldn't have a Scout Group for your child to join!
Now, what's in it for you and your child? You can reasonably expect that your son or daughter will be in the hands of capable and caring Leaders who have a commitment to providing a stimulating and interesting programme designed to assist children to develop into self-reliant and responsible members of the community.
Scouting was started by Robert Baden-Powell to cater for children’s sense of adventure and love of independence and to channel these characteristics into appropriate activities, which will equip them for later life. Leaders take the task of fulfilling the Aims of Scouting very seriously. We undertake every reasonable care of your child when you entrust him or her to us, and to do our best in partnership with you, to help your child to develop to his or her full potential.
We have all undertaken thorough and ongoing training, and we give freely of our time and efforts to enable us to do this. We would not do it unless we were convinced of the value of Scouting in the lives of our children.
We hope that after your child has been with us for a short time, you will be likewise convinced.
Scouts is Australia’s leading youth development organisation and we do our utmost to ensure they are kept safe in our care.
Leaders undergo thorough training for 6 to 12 months before their appointment. Leaders and other volunteers helping to run Scout activities undergo police record checks. Scouts ACT ensures that all of its volunteers comply with current legislation including the Prohibited Employment Declaration (PED) when travelling into NSW.
Scouts has a "two deep" leadership policy, that is, two Leaders (a male and a female) is our preferred option, however this is not always possible. At times, due to sickness, or other reasons there may only be one person present.