Page 2 of 4 FirstFirst 1234 LastLast
Results 16 to 30 of 46

Thread: Can you imagine?

  1. #16
    GSL & AESL shiftypete's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2004
    Location
    Leeds
    Posts
    12,451
    Thanks
    3,633
    Thanked 1,217 Times in 807 Posts
    Quote Originally Posted by pa_broon74 View Post
    Explorer and Network people expected to just inherit all the work done by VSL's, it left a sour taste in the mouth...
    That is precisely what happened here, mind you that is because we just changed VSU to ESU and VSL to ESL and carried on as before (with a different bank account and a different necker)

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

    Previous Scouting Roles
    2003 - 2013 ABSL
    2017-2018 AGSL

    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

  2. #17
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    South Coast
    Posts
    2,334
    Thanks
    452
    Thanked 528 Times in 326 Posts
    Quote Originally Posted by ianw View Post
    I'll just stand up for Network for a second...
    [Snipped]
    That it's jiggered elsewhere is no reason to scrap it completely and throw the baby out with the bathwater.
    .
    Network in your county in 2018 had 374 members, out of near as dammit 25500 members, or per age group year, 2% of the numbers of Beavers. That may be success for you - I see Fareham West has no network so I guess those 20 members are across both districts - but I would say it's every reason to abandon if it takes any level of resource - people or financial - at local or national level when there are more serious issues unaddressed.

  3. #18
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Jun 2014
    Location
    Leeds
    Posts
    360
    Thanks
    132
    Thanked 98 Times in 79 Posts
    Quote Originally Posted by shiftypete View Post
    Didn't Ventures start at 15? Pretty sure I moved up to Ventures at 15.5 with my friend who was 6 months younger than me.

    It is interesting how society changes, my parents thought nothing of me going to the pub with the Ventures are our meetings and they knew where I was going given my Dad was our VSL lol. To be fair it was unusual for anyone to stay in our Unit past the age of going to Uni although those at Uni sometimes came back for the occasional meeting in Uni holidays. So our Unit was effectively a 15 to 19 section so only a year difference in age at both ends to Explorers.

    I seem to remember a move to get Scouts to transfer to Venture Scouts at 15. The Unit that I ran was a joint Venture/Ranger unit and Rangers came in at 14. Most members went to university so their membership rather "tailed off" by the age of about 19. As shiftypete says - not very different to Explorer age range really.

    Quite a few of the unit went to the pub after the meeting - although we had a policy of not doing so during activities.

  4. #19
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Posts
    4,341
    Thanks
    1,556
    Thanked 1,190 Times in 864 Posts
    Quote Originally Posted by shiftypete View Post
    That is precisely what happened here, mind you that is because we just changed VSU to ESU and VSL to ESL and carried on as before (with a different bank account and a different necker)
    We tried that, but it was met with resistance from district. They wouldn't let those under 18 continue to attend VS's, or Network as it would have been. We ignored that obvs, but eventually it waned. Part of the draw of Venture Scouts was that 15 year old could mix with 20 year olds - they loved it. Sometimes it wasn't particularly healthy (I certainly wouldn't get any where near what we used to get up to these days), but that was the big draw.

    Interestingly (or not), not since Venture Scout days has there been the same kind of national level links. We used to know VS's from Glasgow, St Andrew's, Aberdeen - from all over the place. We'd meet up at camps and visit on meeting nights. My VS's would also make their own way to visit with other units. I don't think there's anything like that now. Sure there are Explorer camps, but they're not the same at all. Explorers don't have the same level of autonomy that VS's did.

    But, it had it's day. They could have handled it's end a bit better - but it had to end.

  5. #20
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2009
    Location
    Herts, UK
    Posts
    716
    Thanks
    1
    Thanked 131 Times in 99 Posts
    When it worked, VSs could be brilliant. I was in a joint/Venture Ranger unit (late 70s mind) and it was categorically the best of a series of good sections (Scouts was pretty good too). We did run our own programme with an effective committee (not perfect by any stretch) and the pub did not feature prominently (although I was and am tee-total, so I may have missed some of the action...) Since most of us went to university, we tended to fade away from 18 more than stay really active till 20.

    Unquestionably the retention issues were very large when the change came, and Explorers has been much more successful there. The real consequent problems I think have been for the Scout section. We lost not only our top end, but the next age group too, who should have become the PLs. We never figured that out beyond "maybe they weren't ready to have to step up", and we just had to rebuild. But you still can't do with a 14-year-old PL what you can with a 15 in terms of independent camping and hiking, even though people on here continue to challenge me with what they do achieve with their Troops, so the change in feel is considerable. And there's no pretending that changing attitudes about what supervision kids need, already mentioned above, isn't also a big contributing factor.

    To be fair quite a lot of Scout Troops also had a top-end retention issue. It was those that didn't that struggled with the change.
    Last edited by DKRSL; 22-05-2019 at 10:25 PM.
    SL, 11th Hitchin

  6. The Following User Says Thank You to DKRSL For This Useful Post:

    pa_broon74 (23-05-2019)

  7. #21
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Posts
    4,341
    Thanks
    1,556
    Thanked 1,190 Times in 864 Posts
    Have to say...

    There are definitely more Explorers in our district than there were Venture Scouts, but it took years to settle into a workable model. I'd also say, if you count Explorers who are between 14 and 15.5 and add them to the old VS numbers, the difference wouldn't be that vast.

    Most groups had dribs and drabs of VS's that hung on with their troops, the same as we now have Explorers who do the same. Our unit closed last year, it's numbers were never as high as VS numbers back in the day. I know the biggest group in the area has a lot more Explorers than they did Venture Scouts, but again, if you compare actual age ranges, sure - there's a difference (more Explorers) but it's not as straightforward as saying 'look, we've got 35 Explorers in our unit, how fantastic is that' , if before you had 15 VS's and 10 Scouts aged 14 to 15.5 across the two troops.

    I'm not saying that's the case everywhere, but it's pretty close to the case here. Usual caveats apply - TSA are a bit stuck with big changes, it'll never suit everyone - which is why (I think) there needs to be more acceptance of flexibility between how we all do things. I imagine there will be groups into which I would not fit, and leaders elsewhere who'd run a mile from mine.

    But it all still works.


  8. #22
    ESL and DESC ianw's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Location
    Surrey
    Posts
    6,664
    Thanks
    1,551
    Thanked 2,195 Times in 1,280 Posts
    Quote Originally Posted by RisingStar View Post
    Network in your county in 2018 had 374 members, out of near as dammit 25500 members, or per age group year, 2% of the numbers of Beavers. That may be success for you - I see Fareham West has no network so I guess those 20 members are across both districts - but I would say it's every reason to abandon if it takes any level of resource - people or financial - at local or national level when there are more serious issues unaddressed.
    We've got 20 Network in Farnham having a great time, doing stuff together. Honestly, seeing them in full flow, or just being together, there's an easy esprit de corps that is a joy. Why deny them that? What resources does the Network section take? Locally? There's a GSL that's also District Network Commissioner (or something), he pops his head in and gives sage advice and support where needed, he's happy to do so. I link up with them every once in a while. Nationally? They did some work on a website thingy just for Network. Scouting mag rarely has anything in or any ideas for Network. It feels like the forgotten section. But it carries on regardless. It takes up very little resource, and that resource given is mostly voluntary, I assume Network Gathering may take up Scout Adventures Great Tower's time but it's a campsite so that's their job, other national Network camps are all volunteer run as far as I know. And so what if there are serious issues need addressing? Are the people who volunteer for Network going to be the ones who say "well, you cancelled "my" section, of course, I'll gladly help with your issue de-jour?" No, they help at Network for a reason, that they like helping with that age range, they aren't going to, say, suddenly jump up and transform adult training into something less Byzantine and more useful.

    I suppose it's an easy target as most people haven't seen a functional Network, so don't see the point. I have, and do, I'm the lucky one.
    Ian Wilkins
    Farnham District Explorer Scout Commissioner

    Jambowlree - Worldwide Scout Ten Pin Bowling Competition
    All sections, all countries, runs December 2018 - May 2019
    http://www.jambowlree.org

  9. #23
    ESL and DESC ianw's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Location
    Surrey
    Posts
    6,664
    Thanks
    1,551
    Thanked 2,195 Times in 1,280 Posts
    Quote Originally Posted by pa_broon74 View Post
    but it's not as straightforward as saying 'look, we've got 35 Explorers in our unit, how fantastic is that' , if before you had 15 VS's and 10 Scouts aged 14 to 15.5 across the two troops.
    Is adding Scouts+Ventures or Scouts + Explorers a fairer comparison? Yes, it ignores the 18+ that were in Ventures, but it's all we've got.

    Since 1997 (earliest date I have National section breakdowns for) the total change in sections is:
    Beavers -2.8%
    Cubs -21.4%
    Scouts -1.8%
    Scouts + Ventures/Explorers +9.2%

    But obviously, if that conflicts with anyone's preconceived ideas, that's lies damn lies and statistics.

    And yes, as much as I can see and love that Explorers is a success, I can still appreciate that for troops that weren't losing most Scouts when they got to 15, losing all those older ones has inevitably changed things. If you look at it one way, if most Explorer units aren't patrol based, then you're retaining scouts because they never have to do any real leadership, and then they get another 4 years at Explorers being feckless ingrates that take more than they give.
    Ian Wilkins
    Farnham District Explorer Scout Commissioner

    Jambowlree - Worldwide Scout Ten Pin Bowling Competition
    All sections, all countries, runs December 2018 - May 2019
    http://www.jambowlree.org

  10. #24
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Posts
    4,341
    Thanks
    1,556
    Thanked 1,190 Times in 864 Posts
    The thought process doing the rounds in our district was that the age range change solved a mostly urban problem, then created huge problems for districts that were more disparate and rural in nature.

    I only really had experience of our own district so couldn't comment on how Edinburgh (for example) dealt with it. Except to say, in Edinburgh, the Explorer model seemed to work a lot better.

    I think in rural districts like mine (and this has been mentioned before - it is rural - for now anyway). Groups I don't think (?) talk to each other quite as much as they do in urban districts? I put all those question marks because I've never scouted in an urban setting so don't know if that's true. I suspect, if the district is active, and more importantly - section leaders and groups engage - then they probably are.

    I don't think we were ever quite that way here. So Explorers struggled. I think it's also fair to say, there were problems around the adults involved too. Differences of scouting opinion, (much like there is on here).

    We're probably over thinking it. It may be as simple is having an effective district in place. It's fair to say having Explorers as originally envisaged is predicated on having a district - that's how it was supposed work - on paper. Perhaps you can't have one without the other?

  11. #25
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    South Coast
    Posts
    2,334
    Thanks
    452
    Thanked 528 Times in 326 Posts
    Quote Originally Posted by pa_broon74 View Post
    The thought process doing the rounds in our district was that the age range change solved a mostly urban problem, then created huge problems for districts that were more disparate and rural in nature.

    I only really had experience of our own district so couldn't comment on how Edinburgh (for example) dealt with it. Except to say, in Edinburgh, the Explorer model seemed to work a lot better.

    I think in rural districts like mine (and this has been mentioned before - it is rural - for now anyway). Groups I don't think (?) talk to each other quite as much as they do in urban districts? I put all those question marks because I've never scouted in an urban setting so don't know if that's true. I suspect, if the district is active, and more importantly - section leaders and groups engage - then they probably are.

    I don't think we were ever quite that way here. So Explorers struggled. I think it's also fair to say, there were problems around the adults involved too. Differences of scouting opinion, (much like there is on here).

    We're probably over thinking it. It may be as simple is having an effective district in place. It's fair to say having Explorers as originally envisaged is predicated on having a district - that's how it was supposed work - on paper. Perhaps you can't have one without the other?
    As we are working by personal anecdote... In this highly rural district there are now twice as many explorers as there used to be ventures. And more importantly every scout in every troop has the opportunity to join a unit. In the old days they'd barely be aware of ventures unless a unit was attached to their group.

  12. The Following User Says Thank You to RisingStar For This Useful Post:

    shiftypete (24-05-2019)

  13. #26
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2010
    Posts
    4,341
    Thanks
    1,556
    Thanked 1,190 Times in 864 Posts
    Quote Originally Posted by RisingStar View Post
    As we are working by personal anecdote... In this highly rural district there are now twice as many explorers as there used to be ventures. And more importantly every scout in every troop has the opportunity to join a unit. In the old days they'd barely be aware of ventures unless a unit was attached to their group.
    But you have a district right?

    edit. Every scout in every troop had the opportunity to join a unit here too, they always did and technically still do. But the unit was miles away from where they lived, filled with kids and leaders they'd never met before - usually attached to a group they also didn't go to. Just because they had a unit they could join, didn't mean they would. /edit
    Last edited by pa_broon74; 23-05-2019 at 01:48 PM.

  14. #27
    Senior Member bernwood's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2013
    Location
    Thame, Oxon
    Posts
    1,679
    Thanks
    241
    Thanked 329 Times in 216 Posts
    I used to love being in Ventures, those camps where Skip would drop you off for a weekend camp on friday and pick you sunday. Bottles of beer wrapped in socks so they didnt clink as you walked. Having a whip round on Saturday when your meagre rations had gone, and getting the venturer with face fuzz to go to the off licence with any spare money. Heady days they were in the eighties!

  15. The Following User Says Thank You to bernwood For This Useful Post:

    ianw (24-05-2019)

  16. #28
    Senior Member Bushfella's Avatar
    Join Date
    Mar 2006
    Location
    Huddersfield
    Posts
    15,718
    Thanks
    434
    Thanked 2,976 Times in 1,619 Posts
    Hmmm, odd for Ian to set up a controversial thread... just saying

    I was not happy with the change of age range. Our Ventures were doing reasonably well, and were not exemplifying the "outlier2 behaviour - but then again, we had been asked to set up a Venutre Scout section to counter the "outlier" reputation of the existing one... So they had a sort of standard to meet and at the time I was still in my RSM mode and they dared not get caught getting drunk on camp, or on an organised Venture activity - and they ran their own programme.

    I was also not happy with the lowering of the age range for Scouts.

    On that latter point I see vindication in Navigators where we run from 10 till they grow out of things - usually late 16 - early 17 years - though I am hoping to keep a few of the current crew through to post 18.

    Ventures were like a curate's egg - good in parts. But that also applies to Explorers, Scouts, Cubs, Beavers...

    I'm not sure that a 15 - 21 age range would work nowadays - there would be huge safeguarding concerns from the parents of younger members.
    Ewan Scott

    It seems that there are a lot of Nawyecka Comanch around....





    Nawyecka Comanch'": "Means roundabout--man says he's going one way, means to go t'other" Ethan Edwards - The Searchers



    www.upperdearnevalleynavigators.org.uk

  17. #29
    ESL and DESC ianw's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2004
    Location
    Surrey
    Posts
    6,664
    Thanks
    1,551
    Thanked 2,195 Times in 1,280 Posts
    Quote Originally Posted by Bushfella View Post
    Hmmm, odd for Ian to set up a controversial thread... just saying
    Well, as if I need to justify myself to the likes of you
    Ian Wilkins
    Farnham District Explorer Scout Commissioner

    Jambowlree - Worldwide Scout Ten Pin Bowling Competition
    All sections, all countries, runs December 2018 - May 2019
    http://www.jambowlree.org

  18. #30
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2011
    Location
    South Coast
    Posts
    2,334
    Thanks
    452
    Thanked 528 Times in 326 Posts
    Quote Originally Posted by pa_broon74 View Post
    But you have a district right?

    edit. Every scout in every troop had the opportunity to join a unit here too, they always did and technically still do. But the unit was miles away from where they lived, filled with kids and leaders they'd never met before - usually attached to a group they also didn't go to. Just because they had a unit they could join, didn't mean they would. /edit
    Well, each unit recruits from allocated groups - although that's not rigid. So every troop will see a unit once a year or so which will a natural home in time if they want to move on. In venture days groups without units would generally find that there was nowhere to go as units were closely tied to their groups and district could do nothing about pushing units to spread recruitment. Of course, even now, there are districts where every unit is partnered and those without a partnered unit are frozen out.

    - - - Updated - - -

    Quote Originally Posted by Bushfella View Post
    ...........
    I was also not happy with the lowering of the age range for Scouts.........
    There are many who would agree with you and some troops which hang on for dear life to their Scouts until 14.5, however in the old days, and even for those troops which hold on to their scouts as long as possible, they tend to leave in much greater numbers before they transfer to the next section. In my Son's case he was utterly fed up of Scouts around his 14th birthday and left of his own accord and had to be persuaded to try explorers - which he loved, and stayed with for almost 3 years, in the venture days he would have left the movement, and many did likewise.

Similar Threads

  1. I can imagine a few people would fall for this!
    By Daniel in forum Scout Websites & Computers
    Replies: 2
    Last Post: 28-01-2005, 10:47 PM

Bookmarks

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •