November 2017 Group Newsletter
Akela reporting again this month. Redwood, except for 1 week, has been away with work again so Cedar, Spruce, myself and Rikki from cubs have been looking after the beavers. The 10 beavers who have been “linking”, that is attending both colony and pack meetings for 3 weeks, have now “swum up the river” to the cub pack. As you may imagine with so many moving on, this has left vacancies in the colony, lots of vacancies! Hence at the end of September 15 new recruits started their scouting journey. Our existing beavers have been helping the new recruits to learn all the things that they need to know. So far they have met all of us at beavers and found out all about the beaver animal, where they live and about their special teeth which are orange and can regrow! They have also learnt all about the history and family of scouting. Still to learn is the Beaver Scout Promise and then they will be ready to make their Promise around the campfire and become full members of the colony.
Our new Cub Scouts have been busy learning all about Cub Scouts, much like the Beavers but more in depth! At the same time everyone, including the new recruits, have been practising for the District Challenge Flag. This is an activity day of traditional scouting skills, so at pack meetings the cubs have learnt how to light a fire; some simple first aid; pioneering : making a flagpole; tent erecting; grid references, compass and map signs as well as the history of scouting and The Jungle Book. As I write six of our Cubs, Theo, Ewan, James, Rhori, Archie and William have just returned from the competition (2 of these cubs are some of our new cubs). This was a whole day activity which took place at Downton Scout Headquarters and focusses on team building. They took part in 8 activities, fire lighting, tent erecting, backwoods cooking, first aid, pioneering -making a bowl stand, mapping skills, scouting knowledge and problem solving. I was very proud of them at the end of the afternoon when, not only did another Leader compliment us on what a super team of cubs who were a pleasure to be working with, but they were also announced as the Winners of the Competition. This half of the autumn term will be ending with a hike around Winterbourne ending up at the park, where our new recruits will make their Promise and be invested as full members of the pack.
Both troops have been busy recently not only at troop meetings but also at the weekends, they are all an enthusiastic set of young people. Troop meetings have included practising for the District Grose Trophy Competition which is the Scout equivalent of the Cub Challenge Flag competition. Teams of 4 -7 teams compete in the competition. It is a day activity and it also took place at Downton and is on a wider scale than the cub one. However it is also based on traditional scouting skills, tents, first aid, problem solving,, mapping, fire lighting etc. Idmiston Troop sent 3 teams and Figsbury Troop 2. At the end of the day Idmiston troop’s Owls patrol came joint 3rd.
Members of the Troop helped at the local History weekend in Idmiston Church where they helped serve teas, wash up and generally talk to the public. This is all part of their commitment to supporting the Community. As I write 4 young people from the Troop and our Explorer unit are attending a selection weekend at the Wiltshire Scout Centre in Potterne Wick in the hope of being selected to go to the 2019 World Scout Jamboree, (an International Camp), in America. They are each contesting to be 1 of the 40 strong contingent who will be representing Wiltshire Scouts in America. I have my fingers crossed for all 4 of them.
Two scouts from Figsbury Troop also attended bear Gryll’s Ultimate Survival Camp acting as marshalls and staff at water stations for competition. They had a whale of a time and were able to take part in some of the activities. They came home covered in mud with huge smiles on their faces, a T shirt and a medal to say they had completed the challenge. Jack even managed to get his photo taken with Bear. As I write the troop have organised and run a Jumble Sale at the Glebe Hall. They are fundraising for s special treat, not specified as yet. Anyway today was a great success and they made £250 for their “treat fund”.
The summer of 2018 will see the Explorer Unit attending an International camp once again. When going abroad the young people are expected to raise at least some of the funds themselves. Recently they have started their fund raising campaign with a Barn Dance. This was attended by about 80 people, The Wyvern Dance band played for and organised the dancing, there was a bar and a delicious 2 course Ploughman’s supper. It was an excellent evening, I enjoyed it immensely!, and they raised £1,012 towards the camp, a thoroughly enjoyable way of making money! Weekly unit meetings have included swimming, a film night and a sleepover at the Glebe Hall.
Group Contact Shirley Moores Telephone 01980 611614. Email firstname.lastname@example.org