Adult support

Safe, fun and challenging activities can only be enjoyed by our Beavers, Cubs and Scouts if adults plan, prepare and then deliver them. All families are to be prepared to help at a minimum of 1 meeting per term, but each section needs between 3 and 5 uniformed leaders if it is to function well. Uniformed leaders provide continuity, structure and insurance and they tailor the programme to the needs and aspirations of the children in their section.

This page explains:

  • why adults volunteer
  • what they do
  • what they get out of it
  • what training and support is offered to them
  • how they can sign up, and
  • how they leave.

Why do adults volunteer?

Most adults volunteer to assist with a colony, pack or troop because they want to secure a place for their children in a scout group and they recognise the value of scouting to their children’s development. Some volunteer because they need experience of working with children on the CV or because they are considering fostering/adoption. Others simply wish to make a contribution to the wider community. We welcome all offers of support, provided that the underlying motivation is compatible with the scouting ethos.

What do adults do in scouting?

Some adults offer general support, others offer specific skills and some also offer to share their own interests to children in different sections eg fishing, cycling or kayaking. There are three general types of role:

  • Uniformed leaders – design and deliver a programme of fun and challenging activities. Example roles include leaders at Beaver colonies, Cub packs and Scout troops. The leaders meet to draft a common programme across the sections in the Group and then tailor it for their own section. Meetings are generally convivial!
  • Non-uniformed support roles – examples include the Group Secretary and Treasurer, the Website Manager and Headquarters Manager. Each section benefits from an Administrative Assistant. Adults also help to fill roles at District level, such as Shop Manager, Training Manager, Appointments Secretary and Treasurer.
  • Skills instructors – adults who have specific interests in martial arts, archery, shooting, orienteering or cookery share these interests with a number of sections. Others who have aerospace or aviation connections help to link the Air Scouts to organisations who can help deliver air-scout-related activities.

What do adults get out of scouting?

The tangible rewards for adults in scouting (certificates of thanks, a membership card that secures discounts at several stores and a free gold Group T-shirt) are incidental. Leaders derive huge satisfaction from contributing to the development of young people, being part of a team who respect and support each other and making a positive difference in their community. Many also sample activities along with the Beavers, Cubs and Scouts for the first time – visiting a mosque or fire station, abseiling, rifle shooting and mountaineering. If you wish to know more then just ask any leader what they get out of scouting.

The 100th Elvetham Heath Scout Group refunds the cost of uniform for any leader who wishes to reclaim the cost, and pays for leader skills training where that will benefit the Group (eg climbing instructor, hill walking leader, minibus driver).

What training and support is available to adults?

There is a very flexible training scheme available to scout leaders. Training is available online, by distance learning, or by local evening courses in the area. There is no cost to leaders, and any external fee (eg £5 for the First Aid handbook) is refunded by the Group. Leaders are allocated a training adviser (TA) outside of the Group who can provide training guidance and who validates any learning. Existing ‘civilian’ knowledge and life skills are fully recognised too, and that reduces the learning requirement. The Group Scout Leader is the ‘Line Manager’ for all leaders in the Group and offers a great deal of learning and other support to all in the Group.

Where do I sign up?

If you would like to join the team then please contact the Group Scout Leader to determine which role might be best for you. An information sharing evening is normally provided each term (in the Dehavilland) for adults who want to find out more before making a commitment. An Adult Application form (which incorporates a Scout CRB) is filled in and a short chat with the Appointments Committee completes the process… and then you’re in.

How do I leave?

Few adults stay in the same role for longer than 2 years. Many will change their role as their own child(ren) change sections, or they take on more, or less, responsibility. All we ask is for adults to do the best they can and to give us advance warning of their departure if they can do so to allow us to try and recruit replacements.