Such a great atmosphere
Wayne looks back over a busy two weeks to the start of the Scouting year (and it’s no surprise why he got a little behind with his blog).
When you are immersed in something like Scouting, it usually takes someone from outside, or at least removed from the weekly hubbub, to remind you just how much things have changed.
In many ways, September provides such an opportunity, as hundreds of people come together for the annual Gilwell Reunion.
This year’s event included a wide range of international visitors from the US, Ireland and Oman, as well as other regular overseas attendees. The Annual General Meeting (AGM) a week later provided another opportunity for our supporters and other affiliates of the Movement to join in and have their say.
Feeling good and making a difference
I was struck by the number of positive comments at Reunion and the AGM, which created a really upbeat atmosphere at both events. Other ongoing regular engagements have reaffirmed just how well UK Scouting is doing.
Visitors particularly noted how open we are as a Movement; national volunteers wandered around Gilwell Reunion happily engaging with our members, listening to their views and acting upon them, as I have written previously.
You don't know what you are missing
If you've not been to Reunion before, or haven’t been for a while, please do check out the news story and film.
Make a note of next year's event: 6 to 8 September 2013. Come along to find out what it’s all about; I guarantee you won't be disappointed.
Our unique selling point
At this year's AGM, we were delighted to be joined by HRH the Duke of Kent, who happily mingled with participants.
The afternoon included a series of presentations on international Scouting projects. I have commented before about whether these international opportunities might be the 'unique selling point' we are looking for when it comes to developing our programme for 18-25 year olds. It was great to see that so many of the AGM's audience members were in that age range and engaging in discussions with others.
In other business
September always provides an opportunity to meet with many colleagues and this year was no exception.
I attended meetings with members of the sub-committee chairs and a meeting of the Chairman's Consultative Group (the group of sub-committee chairs and officers who co-ordinate the Board of Trustees' business). I was also involved in presentations to the staff regarding our future strategy, the communications team, the conference planning team and so much more.
On each occasion we have taken the opportunity to outline our current work plans and have been truly amazed at the amount of activity planned for the coming year. We will continue to focus on supporting you in developing our Movement with the provision of fun and exciting programmes.