Further confirmation of how great our opportunities are - and the enthusiasm to succeed.

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Thursday last saw the start of another busy few days when we had lunch with an individual who is not presently a member of the Movement but had seen our advertisement on the website for Chief Commissioner of England and was suitably inspired to apply for the position. 

The individual concerned has recently completed a senior volunteer role in another youth organisation and so we had a great time comparing experiences as well as us having an opportunity to say a little bit about Scouting and where we see it going in the future. Also reminded me that there are perhaps many similar people out there just waiting to be asked if we just work out how?

Straight back to BP House where I was chairing a meeting of the group looking at management and leadership within the movement.  As I have previously explained, I see the work being undertaken by this group as a key part of our strategy to ensure better support for all volunteers so it was great to discuss the significant progress that has been made in defining what good management and leadership within Scouting should look like and how we could implement this across the Movement. 

We were also joined by Mark who heads up the Adults in Scouting Group (part of Adult Support) who briefed us on the extensive work already being undertaken by his team, particularly aimed at supporting Group Scout Leaders.

In keeping with the adage that there is no peace for the wicked, we then moved straight into a telephone conference meeting of the search group looking for the Chief Commissioner(s) of England.  We reviewed the 25 applicants (a significant increase on the original advertisement made) and agreed the next steps.  I was particularly pleased by the variety of names that we had received, although this does of course mean that the group has its work cut out over the coming weeks to assess these.

Friday was another day spent at Gilwell catching up with colleagues working on a number of projects as well as dealing with the now familiar variety of items within the in-tray before driving up to Oxford.

In many ways though, the highlight of the week was joining the young people at Insight 09, our national youth forum.  You can read further details of this on the website but I was also particularly pleased to meet with Tom Henderson, the founder and CEO of Shelterbox, a fantastic charity that we are hoping to work more closely with next year.  

As well as being able to brief the participants on our work towards Vision 2018, I was able to enlist their help through some discussion groups with identifying practical steps we need to be taking to achieve our aspirations.

Saturday was also an opportunity to catch up with the recently appointed UK Commissioner for Programme, Alex, for a discussion about his initial impressions and some ideas already forming for the way forward.

All in all, another great week having been enthused by the interest and excitement of people not directly involved in Scouting and with the energy and enthusiasm of our young people represented at the Insight forum.

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