The Purpose of Scouting
The Scout Association has a clear purpose:
To help young people achieve their full physical, intellectual, social and spiritual potential as individuals, responsible citizens and active members of their local, national and international communities.
Scouting makes a positive contribution to society by helping young people grow into active members of the community. Our scouts are:
Scouting works well when young people enjoy learning by doing, in partnership with adults. They do this by:
- taking part in a variety of activities and new experiences
- exploring the outdoors
- participating in teams
- taking responsibility for themselves and others
We refer to this method of learning by doing as ‘The Program’ – a seamless progression of training, activities and awards that cover everything that young people do in Scouting.
The Program helps young people in 6 areas of personal development, including:
- faith and beliefs
All adults in Scouting have a responsibility to make sure that the Program is fun, exciting and safe. Special training is provided to adults for nights away, and for leading adventurous activities such as mountaineering and water activities.
The Scout Group
The Scout Group is where Scouting happens locally for the Sections. Scout Groups are the bases for the 'family' of Scouting for those aged 5 to 18. Younger Members are able to feel confident and happy about moving through the Sections at this local level. It is within this framework of the Scout Group that the Law and Promise are fulfilled. The Group also provides a secure base for the development of the individual young person.
Scout Groups work because they offer a close level of support for the young people in their care. They know the community and the needs of its young people.
When a young person joins a Section their parents are usually expected to:
- support the young person
- show interest and support the Section's activities
- support the local Group in fundraising, social activities, offers of skills and other help, where appropriate
What makes Scout Groups successful is the ability to:
- deliver enjoyable, high-quality Programs for young people
- focus on the fun and friendship that Scouting brings
- involve parents/carers
- respond to local needs
- be positive and progressive
Ideally, the Group will be led by a Group Scout Leader (GSL) who will make every effort to ensure that each Section in the Group has an adequate leadership team. They will also ensure that the development of the young people is co-ordinated throughout their progress in Scouting. An essential part of this process is the support to all of the adults who are involved in Scouting.
The GSL is helped by those adults who work directly with the young people and by the Group Committee. The Chairperson leads the Group Executive Committee, which provides support to the Group through administration, fundraising and a very wide range of support activities. Once a year the Group must hold an Annual General Meeting of the Group Council (including of all adults connected to the Group). The AGM reports on the year’s events and elections of the Group’s Officers and Executive will take place. This provides a forum for comment and future planning.
Fundraising is an important part of the Group’s activity as money will be necessary for:
- maintenance and repair of the Group Headquarters
- equipment for camping and expeditions
- events - activities and outings
- training of Leaders
- day to day activities - indoor and out
- administration and insurance cover
The Group should be an integral part of the community that it serves, both providing help to the community and receiving support from the community to carry out its work with young people.