Where there's a will, there's a way
Beating the bullies
It gets better… today is an anti-bullying campaign by Stonewall, the lesbian, gay and bi-sexual charity and was brought to my attention by a member, Duncan Hill, through Escouts. Duncan thought it was a good campaign for Scouting to support and, having taken a look, I agreed so we recorded a short message of support which will hopefully appear shortly.
Stonewall is a charity that we have worked closely with for a number of years, initially in developing our own equal opportunities policy and subsequently in identifying ways to work together and to support LGBT members.
Dinner with the Canadian Scouts senior staff team
I also took advantage of being at Gilwell for a few hours to catch up with several members of the Canadian Scouts senior management team who were spending a few days meeting with our respective staff teams.
Hullabaloo, New Greenwich style
Change is never easy and especially when it involves local boundaries, in my experience. So when I heard about Hullabaloo, New Greenwich District Scouts' celebration of their new District covering the whole of the geographical area of the London Borough of Greenwich, I was very happy to take time out from a weekend break with the family in London to join them in Blackheath.
1,600 members across 36 Scout Groups, Explorer Scout Units and Network had come together for a fun day including a combination of the best of their gang shows, a circus big top, and more crafts and adventurous activities than you can imagine.
I know that the boundary changes we have been undertaking in London has been difficult for some. The plan is essentially to align Districts to the London boroughs, and has already been adopted successfully by some Counties.
It was interesting however talking to external guests, particularly the Deputy Lord Lieutenant for the London Borough, who felt that the only surprise was how long it had taken us to adopt this structure. He felt that trying to work with three different Scout Districts within his 'patch' was difficult and confusing, and led to a number of inconsistencies in the external messages we conveyed.
Succeeding where there’s a will
Very many leaders I spent the afternoon with also felt that there were a large number of benefits to be gained from the changes. All were enthusiastically looking forward to playing their part in it. Change may not always be easy, but as Members in New Greenwich demonstrated on Saturday (and if their website is anything to go by) where there is a will to succeed, then succeed we will!
What changes have you made in terms of the management of Scouting in your Group, District or County? What results have you seen? What have you learned that we should share with others? Get in touch by leaving a comment or emailing me.