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Thread: Beavers & Group Camp

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    Senior Member lakes_stu's Avatar
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    Beavers & Group Camp

    For the first time in my Scouting memory, we are planning to run a Group camp this year. Beavers, Cubs and Scouts will be away for a weekend together in May. We have run several sleepovers both in our hall and with District, but this is the first time our Beavers will have the chance to join a camp. Hopefully the first of many.

    The current plan is that Cubs and Scouts will camp, while Beavers will sleep in a bunkhouse. Personally, I would like to try to borrow some more tents and have the Beavers camp too (it might be possible to offer a choice).

    It has been suggested that if Beavers do not wish to stay for the weekend, they could come for one night only, or even just for the day. Parents would need to transport though.

    Having discussed with the organisers I am keen to send a 'save the date' message to Beaver parents. However, I am wondering how best to sell this to parents and Beavers alike, as I am keen to get the best uptake that I can. One concern I have is that the camp will be at the county watersports center, about 25 miles from home.

    I want to strike while the iron is hot, so any tips or advice much appreciated!
    All posts represent my own opinions only. In no way do they speak for anyone else, including (but not limited to) my group, district, county or HQ.

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    Senior Member recneps's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lakes_stu View Post
    For the first time in my Scouting memory, we are planning to run a Group camp this year. Beavers, Cubs and Scouts will be away for a weekend together in May. We have run several sleepovers both in our hall and with District, but this is the first time our Beavers will have the chance to join a camp. Hopefully the first of many.

    The current plan is that Cubs and Scouts will camp, while Beavers will sleep in a bunkhouse. Personally, I would like to try to borrow some more tents and have the Beavers camp too (it might be possible to offer a choice).

    It has been suggested that if Beavers do not wish to stay for the weekend, they could come for one night only, or even just for the day. Parents would need to transport though.

    Having discussed with the organisers I am keen to send a 'save the date' message to Beaver parents. However, I am wondering how best to sell this to parents and Beavers alike, as I am keen to get the best uptake that I can. One concern I have is that the camp will be at the county watersports center, about 25 miles from home.

    I want to strike while the iron is hot, so any tips or advice much appreciated!
    We generally get a good uptake for our group camp - which is about 20 miles away. Due to logistics (space and tents available) our beavers sleep indoors for Group Camp (we already have to borrow tents to be able to get the Cubs and Scouts all camping at Group Camp let alone Beavers!) - they're camping at District Camp though

    We tend to get Beavers for just one night at Group Camp - this is not my choice but has been the preference of the Beaver Leaders who seem to feel 2 nights would be too much for the Beavers... i dont feel its my place as GSL to argue with them, although i do gently encourage them each time to "give it a go".

    Sell it up, and also sell it to the Beavers - pester power is a wonderful thing. Make it very clear to Beavers just how much fu they are going to have, and that they need to go home and ask their mum and dad to sign them up. Works wonders.
    Dan Spencer

    Group Scout Leader 66th Bath
    Deputy District Commissioner (Programme) - City of Bath District
    Nights Away Adviser and member of District Executive Committee - City of Bath District
    Member of Avon County Appointments Advisory Committee
    Event organiser "Be Prepared" Resilience Events
    Formerly CSL, SL, ASL and Jamboree Communications Lead

    Web designer


    It is not the mountain we conquer but ourselves

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    lakes_stu (05-02-2018)

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    We are planning a District beaver camp for the first time ever this year - we have booked the site for 2 nights but our thought is that unless uptake is very low we will have Beavers camping for just one night mostly because after school/work on Friday is quite an awkward time to start putting to put up tents etc We have decided that Just for the day will NOT be an option except in extreme conditions because homesickness from the ones staying is mush more liekly if they see their mates being picked up.
    I have just sent out this letter for BSL's to distribute:

    Save the date!!
    Kincardineshire District Beavers are planning a camp for 22/24th June 2018. We are planning for Beavers to stay one night on the Saturday. We will be camping at Templars Park, Maryculter overnight and plan various activities for the daytime working towards parts of our challenge badges including those which are difficult to manage at a normal colony meeting such as climbing and an assult course. Beavers will be working both with other Beavers that they know well but will also have the opportunity to work with other Beaver colonies within the district. Estimated cost is 25.

    Please can you let us know whether your child will be interested in camping with us.
    'Simba'

    BSL/ADC Beavers.

    All opinions stated are my own.

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    The unpaid help ASLChris's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by lakes_stu View Post
    For the first time in my Scouting memory, we are planning to run a Group camp this year. Beavers, Cubs and Scouts will be away for a weekend together in May. We have run several sleepovers both in our hall and with District, but this is the first time our Beavers will have the chance to join a camp. Hopefully the first of many.

    The current plan is that Cubs and Scouts will camp, while Beavers will sleep in a bunkhouse. Personally, I would like to try to borrow some more tents and have the Beavers camp too (it might be possible to offer a choice).

    It has been suggested that if Beavers do not wish to stay for the weekend, they could come for one night only, or even just for the day. Parents would need to transport though.

    Having discussed with the organisers I am keen to send a 'save the date' message to Beaver parents. However, I am wondering how best to sell this to parents and Beavers alike, as I am keen to get the best uptake that I can. One concern I have is that the camp will be at the county watersports center, about 25 miles from home.

    I want to strike while the iron is hot, so any tips or advice much appreciated!
    If a Group camp is not something you have done before, I would recommend that Beavers are invited to camp for just one night - it gives the Cubs and Scouts an evening for themselves and makes it easier to set up camp and get everything ready. I also wouldn't offer a "day only" option unless specifically requested and for a good reason, especially since you have done sleepovers before so it's not a brand new thing for them.
    Chris Hawes, District Media Manager, Watford North Scout District and Watford Scouts; Group Secretary and Webmaster, 9th North Watford Scout Group.
    Web designer of free Scouting templates, Scouting Themes 4 WordPress.

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    We have a Group Camp in May. The date has been publicized since September. The letter going out with details/booking form etc is the same for all sections and simply assumes that all Beavers will stay for 2 nights unless they have yet to earn their first night away in which case they won't join us until Saturday morning (Beavers leaders' decision). Admittedly they are in wooden chalets rather than tents and the campsite is very local. We've started to gently hype it up (it has a Star Wars theme) and if we do get any parents worried about 2 nights we'll deal with them on an individual basis, as we will if there are any first timers who are desperate to do 2 nights. Day only won't be an option.
    Kate, CSL (and GDB(S))
    1st Weald Brook Scout Group
    Brentwood, Essex
    www.1stwealdbrook.org.uk

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    Assistant Beaver Leader Keith's Avatar
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    We're doing a group family camp - that's the entire group (Beavers, Cubs, Scouts, Young Leaders, Leaders) and their family (parents and siblings) - in the summer and our Beavers will have the opportunity to sleep in tents in Scouting for the first time ever. We're tying it in with the Damboree. There is about 80 people going.
    Keith "Hawkeye"
    Assistant Beaver Scout Leader (Woodbadge)
    Group Badge Secretary
    Fundraising Co-ordinator - Group Family Camp 2018
    Former Colony Assistant & DofE Helper
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    http://www.inglebybarwickscouts.org.uk

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    Medicationed BenOfThe12th's Avatar
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    Don't assume that Beavers will only want to stay for a single night in a bunk house.
    As ALL of the nights Away restrictions have now been removed, why not offer everything to every section.
    After all you may have Cubs that can only manage a single night, or a Scout that would prefer a bunkhouse.
    Ask them all what they would like and facilitate for the best out come.
    Break the mold of historic arrangements and go with the flow..

    ** Warning ** I like my humour Very DRY, same as my Martinis, so don't take anything personally..

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    AESL & AGSL shiftypete's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BenOfThe12th View Post
    Don't assume that Beavers will only want to stay for a single night in a bunk house.
    As ALL of the nights Away restrictions have now been removed, why not offer everything to every section.
    After all you may have Cubs that can only manage a single night, or a Scout that would prefer a bunkhouse.
    Ask them all what they would like and facilitate for the best out come.
    Break the mold of historic arrangements and go with the flow..
    Because that would be an organisational and logistical nightmare and could result in Leaders being left in charge overnight of kids not in their Section which they don't know

    I think its a good idea to make a differential between Sections anyway.

    Peter Andrews AESL of Headingley Pirates ESU, Assistant Group Scout Leader & Webmaster of Falkoner Scout Group
    www.falkonerscouts.org.uk

    Wike, North Leeds District Campsite - www.wikecampsite.org.uk
    www.leeds-solar.co.uk
    Please note all views expressed are my own and not those of any organisation I'm associated with

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    ASLChris (06-02-2018)

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    Medicationed BenOfThe12th's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by shiftypete View Post
    Because that would be an organisational and logistical nightmare and could result in Leaders being left in charge overnight of kids not in their Section which they don't know

    I think its a good idea to make a differential between Sections anyway.
    Maybe, maybe not, but you wont know unless the question is asked.

    ** Warning ** I like my humour Very DRY, same as my Martinis, so don't take anything personally..

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    Quote Originally Posted by BenOfThe12th View Post
    Don't assume that Beavers will only want to stay for a single night in a bunk house.
    As ALL of the nights Away restrictions have now been removed, why not offer everything to every section.
    After all you may have Cubs that can only manage a single night, or a Scout that would prefer a bunkhouse.
    Ask them all what they would like and facilitate for the best out come.
    Break the mold of historic arrangements and go with the flow..
    No. Don't give too many options. It simply makes it too difficult to manage.
    Chris Hawes, District Media Manager, Watford North Scout District and Watford Scouts; Group Secretary and Webmaster, 9th North Watford Scout Group.
    Web designer of free Scouting templates, Scouting Themes 4 WordPress.

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    Senior Member recneps's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by BenOfThe12th View Post
    Don't assume that Beavers will only want to stay for a single night in a bunk house.
    As ALL of the nights Away restrictions have now been removed, why not offer everything to every section.
    After all you may have Cubs that can only manage a single night, or a Scout that would prefer a bunkhouse.
    Ask them all what they would like and facilitate for the best out come.
    Break the mold of historic arrangements and go with the flow..
    Depends on what's logistically possible.

    We get our Beavers out camping at least once a year. If there's not a district or county event to camp at, we run a Beaver summer camp. Again, its only 1 night, but that's the choice of the BSLs. I will keep encouraging but thats all i can do on that front.

    For Group Camp, having Beavers camping would be logistically challenging. We already put a lot of hard work into making the weekend happen, running a camp for over 100 kids with 2 days of activities, getting kit and people to a site 20 miles away, getting mess tents up for activities, catering for everyone. Trying to source extra tents, and adding to the workload just doesnt, in all honesty, appeal.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by ASLChris View Post
    No. Don't give too many options. It simply makes it too difficult to manage.
    Totally agree with this. For district Beaver and Cub camp we are tryig to keep things as simple as possible.
    Dan Spencer

    Group Scout Leader 66th Bath
    Deputy District Commissioner (Programme) - City of Bath District
    Nights Away Adviser and member of District Executive Committee - City of Bath District
    Member of Avon County Appointments Advisory Committee
    Event organiser "Be Prepared" Resilience Events
    Formerly CSL, SL, ASL and Jamboree Communications Lead

    Web designer


    It is not the mountain we conquer but ourselves

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    Senior Member lakes_stu's Avatar
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    Luckily (I think), I am not one of the active organisers in this case. The Cub and Scout leaders have pretty much got everything sorted, and the Beavers have simply been invited along.

    This means that if there are any extras (such as borrowing tents for example), I have the bandwidth to take them on.

    I do like the idea of keeping things simple though. I am hoping to run a 1 night camp in tents for Beaver later in the summer (as part of Damboree), so its not a huge deal either way.

    Its a marketing exercise for me, I suppose. We have several Beavers that have spent a night in our meeting hall, and one or two that have not yet. I dont know how the Beavers and their Parents are going to feel about this yet, so I would rather take 50% of the colony for a fun night away than take only 10% on an epic (from a 6 year olds perspective) adventure. If that makes sense!
    All posts represent my own opinions only. In no way do they speak for anyone else, including (but not limited to) my group, district, county or HQ.

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    Medicationed BenOfThe12th's Avatar
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    Yeah I was being a little obtuse here, but my point is don't simply push the Beavers into the old fashioned single night indoors.
    They are a part of Scouting so it's about time they wern't simply pushed out of the way.
    Yes they are young, but that shouldn't be the reason to molly coddle them.
    Don't get hung up on their age, let them show you what they are capable of..
    The Campers are already a special breed as they are happy to attend NA events.
    Last year we awarded are first 10 nights and we regularly give out 5s.

    Yes, I'm biased, but some one needs to stand up for them otherwise they'll end up stuck inside doing glitter & glue...

    ** Warning ** I like my humour Very DRY, same as my Martinis, so don't take anything personally..

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    Quote Originally Posted by BenOfThe12th View Post
    Yeah I was being a little obtuse here, but my point is don't simply push the Beavers into the old fashioned single night indoors.
    They are a part of Scouting so it's about time they wern't simply pushed out of the way.
    Yes they are young, but that shouldn't be the reason to molly coddle them.
    Don't get hung up on their age, let them show you what they are capable of..
    The Campers are already a special breed as they are happy to attend NA events.
    Last year we awarded are first 10 nights and we regularly give out 5s.

    Yes, I'm biased, but some one needs to stand up for them otherwise they'll end up stuck inside doing glitter & glue...
    Yes, but a group camp isn't the best place to try it - especially if you haven't done on before, like the OP!
    Chris Hawes, District Media Manager, Watford North Scout District and Watford Scouts; Group Secretary and Webmaster, 9th North Watford Scout Group.
    Web designer of free Scouting templates, Scouting Themes 4 WordPress.

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    Medicationed BenOfThe12th's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ASLChris View Post
    Yes, but a group camp isn't the best place to try it - especially if you haven't done on before, like the OP!
    I disagree Chris, a Group camp should be the perfect place to demonstrate just how great Beavers are..
    The theory being you have all the experienced support you could possibly need..

    ** Warning ** I like my humour Very DRY, same as my Martinis, so don't take anything personally..

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