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The launch of a campaign to promote youth social action provided a great opportunity to talk about Scouting’s pre-existing role in this, while Wayne also got the chance to talk to potential partners about expanding our work further.

Speaker’s reception

150 Scouts and leaders squeezed into the Speakers House at Westminster on Tuesday for our annual reception and we were delighted to be joined by the Speaker of the House, John Bercow.

In his welcoming speech he paid tribute to what he described as ‘the most outstanding youth movement in the UK’, recognising volunteers from across the UK who make such a difference.

We were also delighted to be joined by the new officers of the All Party Parliamentary Scout Group who work to promote Scouting across Westminster throughout the year.  It was also an opportunity to catch up with Alan Craft and Matt Hyde earlier in the day.

Youth Social Action

Hosted by The Prince of Wales, the meeting and reception to launch the Campaign for Youth Social Action took place at Clarence House. The campaign aims to increase the number of young people engaging in such activities by 1.7m. Clearly this is tailor made for our own Vision 2018 and it was great to see this acknowledged by the Prime Minister in his statement welcoming the launch.

It was great to meet leaders from several other charities – especially those involved in local communities where we are under-represented – and to begin to explore ways in which we can work together.

Understanding the real world

Friday evening and Saturday morning was taken up by a meeting with my team. Topics included the programme for 18-25 year olds; issues around safeguarding including the appeal process; DBS changes and current trends; plans to achieve our Vision and identifying solutions to some common local challenges identified through various consultations.

Celebrating our Activity Centre developments

I visited Youlbury National Scout Activity Centre in Oxfordshire to open the Centenary Lodge and to announce the second phase of our redevelopment, which gets underway in September.

Everyday adventure is what attracts increasing numbers of young people to Scouting and outdoor education is one of the key methods we use in our programme. For me, the development of our facilities in these areas are key priorities, so it was great to chat to those making it happen and to celebrate our latest steps forward.

It was also a chance to drop in on the wonderful leaders and cubs from 8th Oxford for afternoon tea and to see the Youlbury Museum and amateur radio station in action.

Wayne Bulpitt, UK Chief Commissioner

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