I took over as Cub leader in 2016 when my daughter joined and help was needed. Cub Scouts is for young people aged 8 - 101/2 and is the second section in Scouting, after Beavers and before Scouts and Explorers. Our Scout Troop at Henfield, is recognised at the oldest surviving Scout Troop in the world
Since 2016 the pack has grown from 25 Cubs to now over 60, meaning that we now have two packs that run on Tuesday and Thursday nights, and due to a shortage of leaders I am involved with both packs running a joint programme. Almost everything our Cubs do goes towards badges, and many of our Cubs have achieved the highest award for a Cub – the Chief Scout Silver award. This can only be achieved by the Cub coming each week and taking part in all activities including Camps.
The camps which I organise and run have grown over the last few years, and now we take nearly 50 Cubs to the annual full camp that happens in the Ashdown Forest, when the cubs get to take part in activities such as Abseiling, Climbing, pot holing, zip wires and hikes. We also run another camp near Hove where they learn skills such as fire lighting, shelter building, cooking on fires etc.
A lot of the activities we do, while fun are also there to build Skills for Life into our Cubs and really a key skill is resilience. They may struggle on activities but they learn to overcome that, and get better and when they need it help, support and comfort is always there. We see through teamwork, confidence and community spirit the Cubs grow physically and mentally during the time they are with us, and it truly is an amazing to see the benefits that Cubs bring.
This year 3 former cubs came back as young leaders, so I decided to help at the young leader sessions and Duke of Edinburgh sessions. This additional work has meant that by the end of 2019, 2 of my young leaders had fully completed the course and were awarded their belts within 11 months and they are now helping to support the Cub group.
Volunteering takes up a lot of my time, but is very rewarding to see the young people grow and the benefit from Cubs, Scouting and DoE is great and I would recommend it to any age. This year I have worked with volunteer leaders aged from 14 to 80. For our older members this really helps to keep them young, despite being retired for many years they use and pass on their skills. Others of our retired community help the Group by being treasurer and secretary to the group while others are in linked organisations that help with the fundraising goals.