This awful pandemic has re-written the way that we interact and the ways in which we go about our daily lives. We are facing challenging and uncertain times and as Scout Leaders I believe we have a moral obligation to do all we can to continue to provide exciting and adventurous Scouting programmes which ensures we enhance the mental and physical resilience of our members during this really difficult time. We are stepping up to deliver online programmes and we should be proud that BSO is living up to our Scouting values. Our comms team has worked tirelessly to massively enhance our communication tools which is enabling you to adapt your programmes for online delivery.
There are three inter-related challenges and opportunities facing us all.
- Firstly, we must look after our adult volunteers. This means looking out for one another by speaking regularly to your team perhaps over a coffee.
- Secondly, we must do everything we can to ensure that young people can still participate in Scout activities and gain badges and awards in recognition of their efforts.
- Thirdly, where it is safe to do so – and within the context of both national and local public health guidance – we must empower young people to do more than just participate. With appropriate adult guidance we can turn our volunteering into providing the vital support that their own communities need to be resilient in these unprecedented times. Already we are hearing of Scouts ensuring that those who are isolated receive a phone chat or receive a written letter.
There has never been a time when working together has been more important. With this in mind we are providing common Microsoft collaboration tools which will enable our Groups to interconnect across Districts and across the Area. We have several Groups in the Area that are trying to do their ‘own thing’ and operate independently. I say with utmost respect – This is not the time to operate in isolation – We are part of a big team and we need everyone to pull together with the same tools which will enable you to interconnect right across BSO.
We will be endeavouring to keep everyone informed and connected through regular newsletters and in the BSO Adult Forum Facebook Group. In particular, we want to share stories, insights and ideas to give all our leaders support and inspiration so we can continue to make a positive difference and deliver skills for life.
Finally, It’s been wonderful seeing us all learning totally new processes and systems to deliver great Scouting. I have never been more proud to be part of the movement and I am full of gratitude to everyone one of you for all you are doing to ensure our young people continue to enjoy and benefit from Scouting.