Scouts launch campaign to recruit volunteers to help Generation Covid recover from the pandemic
Disrupted family lives and remote schooling pressures have contributed to 21% (over 460) fewer young people taking part in the Scouts in the last year in North-East Wales
Scouts relies on volunteer leaders to deliver youth work so it needs to replace the adult volunteers to enable it to attract back the youth members lost over the last year.
Scouts launch the #GoodForYou campaign which aims to recruit at least ten thousand volunteers to help young people with their wellbeing and build their skills for life
Scouts are today launching the #GoodForYou campaign designed to recruit over 100 volunteers in North-East Wales to help young people to reconnect, supporting their wellbeing and building their skills for life.
Youth membership in Denbighshire, Flintshire and Wrexham has fallen by 21% over the past year, falling from 2,202 last year to 1,734. Adult volunteer numbers in North-East Wales are also down from 796 in 2020 to 702 for 2021. This drop in numbers follows a sustained period of growth, where total membership rose by nearly 1,000 people between 2006 and 2020 across the region.
These numbers are an indicator of how the pressures and disruptions to life over the past year mean not all youth members have been able to continue. This is especially the case in communities disproportionately impacted by the pandemic.
Scout groups across North-East Wales are now looking to build back better and empower the Covid generation when they need most. To do this Scouts need more adults to step up and volunteer to lead young people. Scout volunteers will create opportunities for young people to recover from the impact of the pandemic by supporting their wellbeing and building the skills needed to succeed in life.
Gavin Scott who leads the Scouts in North-East Wales said:
“Our fantastic volunteers adapted and continued through the restrictions, but our membership numbers show many young people in Clwyd were unable to continue Scouting during lockdown.
“Thankfully, outdoor adventure is back, young people are returning in their droves to meet friends, have fun and fulfil their potential by learning skills for life. That’s why today we’re calling on people to volunteer for the Scouts. Volunteering is good for communities, good for young people and good for you.”
Over the next six months the Scouts will be running a series of locally focused recruitment campaigns across the UK, including in Denbighshire, Flintshire and Wrexham, designed to encourage those young people and adults who drifted away during the pandemic re-join and to create new Scout groups in areas of greatest need. The campaign will be designed to appeal to new adult volunteers and emphasis why volunteering is good for your health, happiness, skill development and family life.
Since the first lockdown, Scout volunteers have provided thousands of hours of Zoom sessions, supported young people with at-home challenges like the Great Indoors and Hike to the Moon. And when restrictions have allowed, have run socially-distanced meet ups.
Megan Davies,16, an Explorer Scout from Pen-y-Ffordd said:
“Explorers via Zoom was enjoyable seeing familiar faces and being able to carry out activities whilst being in the comfort of my own home.
“Being part of Explorers definitely helped me through lockdown because it gave me a sense of normality, it broke up my day & was very enjoyable – something fun to lighten the boring & monotonous isolation I felt being stuck at home during lockdown.”
Ellen Haley a Scout Volunteer from Wrexham said:
“I’ve gained more crucial experience and knowledge being with Scouts over the past two years than I have in the last fifteen years of work experience. Planning, preparation, social skills, networking, management, environmental scanning, problem solving etc etc, are all invaluable skill sets give an advantage when joining the business world, which you can’t learn from a classroom.”
“Being in the Scouts certainly has helped us through Covid and lockdowns. It’s opened our eyes to activities at home which we would have never had thought about. My son ended up wanting to do more Beaver badge work than actual school work. I can genuinely say, if we didn’t have Scouting throughout this past year, I think as a family we would have struggled.”