As all sections get stuck into their programmes for the coming term, I have had to take some time as GSL to review the group as a whole and our plans for the future. This was because it was once again time for my dreaded ‘review of appointment’ with the District Commissioner of Horsham Scout District. As with most organisations this is a process that allows those involved to share their thoughts, successes and any concerns they may have with those a little higher up the ladder, it is also an opportunity to come up with ways to improve or build on the quality of scouting that is given to the young people in our village.
I have been Beaver Leader in Slinfold for 14 years now, having been an Assistant Cub Leader in my previous life before moving to Slinfold. I then became GSL, Group Scout Leader, quite by accident 12 years ago. It didn’t seem too daunting a job when it was just me, 7 beavers, a ‘borrowed from the District’ cub leader and her 6 cubs. It is now however a much larger undertaking with our recently completed annual census showing 6 young leaders and over 80 children spread from Beavers up to Explorers. The job of ensuring that they have varied, fun and adventurous programmes to follow with badges and awards to achieve is being admirably fulfilled by a record 18 leaders in Slinfold Scout Group now.
Scouting in general is made up of almost all volunteers and as I sat and discussed our group with the DC at my review it dawned on me just how far, as a group, we have come over the past 14 years. I was able to reflect on how much we have achieved based purely on the hard work and dedication of people that are not paid a penny. It is not only at parades, church services and award ceremony’s that I look around me feeling immensely proud, but also at every section meeting, activity or camp while watching the scouts, cubs or beavers deeply engrossed in whatever task they have been set.
I’m pleased to report that those a little higher up the ladder are more than happy with Slinfold Scout Group and are 100% supportive of our plans for the future. There is always an open invitation to anyone that feels they would like to be a part of our group if you have some time to give or a hobby or skill to share, you will always be welcome.
As yet we have not been able to secure a home for the future of the group within the village, but we will continue to investigate every opportunity that comes our way and as I have said on many occasions, we can ‘Scout’ out of a cardboard box if we really have to, but lets just hope it doesn’t come to that!
Our hut is available for hire for children’s parties and meetings and our Rag Bag appeal is on going.