In 2017 Montgomeryshire Area committee, pledge to support the delivery of the young leader’s award as an area, after it was proposed by our training manager Neil Grant. In October 2017 with the Support from our Regional Commissioner Adrian Austin and Anna King (District Commissioner for Radnorshire) we embarked on the first pilot Young Leader training weekend, covering the training modules for the first part of the award which was a huge success with representatives from each Explorer unit in Montgomeryshire and some from Radnorshire. This enabled the young people to complete missions 1 and 2.
Sadly, due to my personal commitments and completing my final year of my degree, we were not able to offer the second half of the course the following October, which meant some young people who started the course were not able to complete the awards due to exam commitments and/or turned 18. Part two of the training course was run in April 2019, again, with a great turn out from across the Montgomeryshire Explorer Units. We have learnt a lot from the first pilot project and support is now in place for the Beaver, Cub and Scout leaders to help the Young Leaders to complete their missions.
It has been a privilege to award the Young Leaders award and their Young Leader buckle to our first five Explorers who have completed the award via our pilot project. Congratulations to Aaron, Celyn, Conall, Jess and Piper for completing the award. More awards are to be signed off shortly.
The award has seen the young people’s personal self-esteem and confidence and ability to lead grow and this was evident in the presentation they delivered to the Area AGM.
Between the five Young Leaders, they have accumulated around 1000 hours of volunteering so far, which has generated a positive impact to local Scouting and national events. As they have also volunteered at the All Wales Scout Camp in 2018 and the All Wales Cub Fun day in 2019, to put into further practice the training they have learnt. From these experiences they have made many friends from across the country.
As an area, being able to offer the award has enabled us to embrace and enhance our YouShape programme, offer an experience for young people to grow and become amazing role models within the area and valued assets to the leadership team.
The award may take a while to achieve but that commitment, personal challenge and personal reflection embodied in the process creates an amazing journey of self-discovery, and accumulating skills for life and future employment.
There has been a community impact knock-on effect, which is highly valued as Powys is such a rural county. Two of our Young Leaders have used the knowledge and experience gained through the award and helped to set up peer reading support groups in two of the local secondary schools and are supported by other young people in and outside Scouting. The Young Leaders have also applied their knowledge and experiences to other uniform youth movements in the area through their involvement with the Army and Police cadets. I look forward to the next training weekend in October and meeting our new Young Leaders from across the area.
Here is a short video I have put together to show some of the highlights over the two years from our five Young Leaders who have completed the award. Congratulations to you all.
Explorer Scout Leader – Young Leader Coordinator
Montgomeryshire Information on how to register your Explorer on the scheme is available via the following link.