4 wonderful years of YouShape
Happy fourth anniversary to YouShape! February 2018 saw another fantastic month, where we celebrated young people in Scouting, and showcased their involvement in shaping their own programmes and experiences. Here, we look over the last four years of YouShape, and celebrate how it has grown and developed since its launch in 2015.
In 2015, UK Youth Commissioner Hannah Kentish and team hosted the first YouShape event in London, catering for 120 young people. The event focussed on understanding and sharing young people’s experiences of shaping their own Scouting. The event was a great success and helped build a picture of young people’s current and previous experiences. Online engagement was incredible, and helped us build and shape a week of activities in 2016. You can see the full report from 2015 here.
During YouShape Week 2016, 25,000 young people and volunteers took part in events around the country to enable young people to shape their own programmes. Activities were produced to provide ideas and suggestions on how to get young people involved in decision making, and the first YouShape Badge was produced. The second national YouShape event was also held across a weekend in Doncaster. You can see the full report from 2016 here.
2016 is also when District and County Youth Commissioners started to be appointed.
YouShape 2017 focussed much more on local Scouting, with an increased number of resources available. Wear Their Necker, a scheme which allows young people to shadow adult volunteers, was also launched with great success. At the same time over 6,000 young people gave their views on Scouting for the future, which fed into the new strategic plan for Scouting (from 2018-2023). You can take a look at this research here.
This year, we produced 32 brand new #YouShape Postcards for all Sections, available for volunteers to download online for free, or to buy in print form via Scout Store. Each card contains a fun and engaging activity to help kickstart the conversation around Youth Shaped Scouting, encouraging young people to actively shape their own programmes. 2018 also saw the launch of some exciting new Wear Their Necker opportunities, with young people across the country shadowing adult volunteers and staff working in everything from the Acting UK commissioner for Programme role, to HQ roles in a range of different departments, including heritage and marketing.
UK Youth Commissioner Hannah Kentish said: "We have come so far since our first ever YouShape event in 2015. We now have a huge number of youth commissioners across the UK and so many of our young people have the chance to influence their scouting journey through Youth Shaped activities. If this is how far we have come in three years, I can't wait to see what the future holds.”
Don’t forget: Youth Shaped Scouting happens all year round. The activities and resources from the last four years are still available, so you can make sure that your Scouting is fully shaped by young people. You can also speak to your Local Youth Commissioner for advice, support and ideas.