My life as a Beaver Young Leader
Megan describes what life is like leading the way for Beavers and how they are preparing for #YouShape.
Megan from Glendon District Explorer Scout Group found her feet in Scouting by taking part in her local gang show. She is part of the #YouShape team preparing for the national event in February. Here she talks to us soon after her Tuesday night session with the Beavers.
Tell us about your transition from being a Guide to a Scout. What was that like and why did you make the change?
I wanted to join the Scouts because there wasn’t a Guides Senior Section in my area and I wanted to carry on taking part in gang show. So I decided to join the Explorers and it was the best decision I’ve ever made.
How did you find being an Explorer and becoming a Young Leader?
It was really different from attending Guides with all girls to going to Scouts where there are both boys and girls. There were quite a few Young Leaders in my Group and they seemed to really enjoy it, so I thought I would give it a go. I wasn’t a Scout before so I had to find a group and I found 15th Avondale Kettering Beavers. I loved my first couple of weeks there, it was nice to see smiles on the Beavers faces because I was helping them.
Did you find leading Beavers easy or did you come across some challenges?
It was a difficult transition going to Beavers because I had not been a Beaver and so I didn’t really know what to expect. When I first started I had no proper experience except from working with younger years in school, but I found my feet quite soon after I started my role.
What kinds of things do you have to do with the Beavers?
When I get to the session, the Beaver Leader takes the register and then I play games with them and go through what we are going to do that day. I do this while the Beaver Leader gets everything ready. We usually have bases when we do activities, so I’m normally on a base and will run a section of the meeting.
So you've just finished your session with the Beavers, what kind of things did you do tonight?
We had new Beavers join us tonight, so we played getting to know you games and then the Beavers planned their meetings for the next couple of weeks. We were asking them what they wanted to do and they had pretty good ideas.
How are you finding the preparations for #YouShape? What kind of things do you have to do?
I’m running a base with someone about transitioning from Beavers to Cubs to Scouts to Explorers. I think #YouShape is very fun, I’ve really enjoyed the prep so far.
Why did you want to be apart of the YouShape team?
I’ve loved Scouting so much since I started Explorers. I’ve always wanted to be a part of shaping Scouting in my area and nationally.
You spoke earlier about your Beavers planning their meetings. Do you think they understand what they are doing is youth shaped Scouting?
I think they felt a part of the planning process and helping us Leaders know what they want to do. During #YouShape Week, I’m running a session with my Beavers, that’s when I think they will understand youth shaped Scouting better.
What kind of things did they come up with?
Another group in our district had a sleepover at National Sea Life Centre (Birmingham) so one of our Beavers asked if we could do that. We were like ‘ don’t see why not’. One of them went onto the website and looked at the badges they would like to do and came up with all these cool ideas.
Can you describe what it’s like when you see a Beaver achieve their badge?
I feel proud of them. Last year I saw a Beaver achieve their Bronze Scout award, I first met him when joined Beavers at six-years-old and I’ve seen him get all of his badges and then the Bronze Scout Award which was a really nice moment and I felt really proud and happy about him getting that far.
Can you describe for me some of your favourite moments being a Young Leader and an Explorer?
One of my best memories being a Young Beaver Leader is visiting Cadbury World in October 2015, we had a sleepover there and it was so much fun. We got free chocolate and we went on rides, it was so much fun. We went with the Cubs as well! As an Explorer I love Gilwell 24! I’ve only been twice and it’s so much fun! You get to meet Scouts and Explorers from all over the country and spend time with your friends doing activities.
What are your hopes for #YouShape?
I hope Scouts across the country will have the confidence to speak their views and get their points across and begin to plan their meetings, run their own meetings and plan their term as well.
To get involved in #YouShape you can find all the important information here.
Want to meet more of the #YouShape team? Read Oscar's story here.