My life as a young leader

BF Oscar Young Leader

Young Leader Oscar gives us a taste of what life is like leading the way.

Hello, I’m Oscar and I’m a member of the YouShape planning team for next year. I’m a Young Leader with the 11th Eastbourne Scout Troop , which is my old Scout Troop and I’m also Unit Chairman for my Explorer Unit called Helios.

I have been a Young Leader since January 2014 and I have enjoyed it immensely. Well okay abrupt early Saturday morning awakenings aren’t that great, however the weekend camps that follow are always a lot of fun! Our most recent one was our banquet camp where the Scouts were tasked with preparing and putting on a three course meal to their paying parent customers in Christmassy decorated surroundings. I feel fortunate to be able to work with a supportive leadership team to help make all of this happen.


My role as a Young Leader

The truth is it’s so varied. One week I might be meeting with the rest of the leadership team to discuss filming the next blockbuster zombies film in the woods ( which is always popular with the Troop), running night hikes across the south downs or figuring out the logistics for our next major international expedition. We are planning to visit Spejdernes Lejr 2017 in Demark which will add to the long list of international camps we have done.

When I have the time, I help out with the Explorer service team called Team Bravo at my local Scout campsite called Bushy Wood. We are currently undertaking a huge restoration project. The upcoming winter is set to be busy preparing the site for the camping season through resurfacing all the footpaths with road planning’s, improving WIFI, refurbishing buildings, growing more grass and lots, lots more. Follow us on twitter for the latest updates. @bushywoodowl.

BI Canoeing

As a young leader you still get to play and engage in the array of activities available to the Scouts whilst learning how to be a leader. Those that know me know how much I love the simple game of Geocaching. This is a great game that I have taught the Scouts who always ask when we are going out next for a hike or a stroll through the woodlands to find hidden treasures. However your main role is to bridge the gap between the young people and the adult leaders.

Being a Young Leader helps with my college media studies. As a Young Leader I manage the Troop’s twitter account @11thEB, I edit films that we make and document our adventures on camera. All of this I’ve managed to put on to my portfolio. My dream is to have a career producing short films, Especially ones that encourage everyday adventure.

How I work with young people to shape their Scouting

Every month I hold a whole Troop Forum. This is where I print out the Programme from the previous term and the Scouts discuss what they thought within their Patrols, before we discuss their ideas as a whole Troop. These are then recorded onto a word document that is discussed at every planning meeting.

Personally I struggle to get sensible ideas out of the Scouts. Although that’s not entirely true (and I’m sure many others have this problem). Some brilliant ideas include water sport taster days and ‘I’m A Celebrity’ themed camp. There are a whole range of personalities in our Troop, some are more outspoken than others. For those who are less inclined to speak out, we have to think off new techniques, games and activities to bring out the best ideas from our young people.

BI Beach

The highs and lows of being a young leader

My highs have got to be visiting new places with the troop. This year I was lucky enough to revisit Guernsey (I went as a Scout). Whilst in Guernsey we engaged in a whole range of adventurous activities including sea kayaking, go karting, touring, paddling on the beach and exploring the beautiful island of Herm. The above three pictures and the one below where taken in Guernsey this year. Whilst we were on the island we took the time to explore the culture and the history of the island and look at how the German invasion during WW2 has scared the landscape. 

I rarely get low times but when I do it would be the evenings when I have to put a lot of effort into planning the evening and a few Scouts decide to spoil it by being rude and disrespectful. You just think to yourself ‘why do I bother?’ But then you remember the great times you have had in the summer and return the next week ready to deal with whatever could be thrown at you.


My hopes for Youshape

I want attendees to go home feeling like they can make a difference within their districts and are brimming with ideas gained from other young people they have met during the weekend and share them with their groups.

To get involved in YouShape 2016 you can find all the important information here.

Find out more about Oscar by visiting his blog

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