Following the success of #YouShape 2016, where over 20,000 young people and volunteers got involved, in February 2017 we had a whole #YouShape month. Obviously Youth Shaped Scouting is about everyday Scouting all year round, but UK Scouting focused in February to really support young people and volunteers to embed this traditional part of Scouting into what we do and celebrate what are already good examples of Youth Shaped Scouting.
The outcomes of the month nationally were to:
- Raise the profile and understanding of YSS across the organisation.
- Increase the quality and quantity of sectional Youth Shaped Scouting such as PL Forums and Sixers meetings where young people get to express their ideas and gain more leadership opportunities.
- Youth Commissioners working collaboratively with their Districts/Counties to embed Youth Shaped Scouting into the four areas of Youth Shaped Scouting: Programme, Leadership, Management and Governance.
- Work in partnership nationally to shape the future aspirations of the UK Scout Association.
During YouShape Month 2017, over 6,000 young people were asked what they enjoyed most and least about Scouting, what they achieved, and what they valued in the adults that supported them.
Whether you are a youth commissioner, section leader or line manager, we hope the voices of young people remain front and centre of your discussions as you decide what Scouting should prioritise in the next strategic plan. The initial results are outlined here.
The UK #YouShape team provided some fantastic fun and easy to use resources to help section leaders and managers take part in #YouShape month, but they are excellent resources that can be used all year round. Remeber #YouShape isn't just a month, it's something we should embed all year round.
Activity Inspiration Pack
In the Activity Inspiration resources you will find 31 pages jam packed full of inspirations to help you plan your own #YouShape activities, whether that be a District Camp or running a #YouShape night. Remember, #YouShape is more than just a month, and these resources can be used at any point in the year.
This year it explains how each activity links to badges from the section, making it even easier to link in to the programme. Also included is an evening planner for each section, so you can run your own #YouShape evening easier.
This year, we’re asking each Group and Section to pledge to take part in #YouShape and make sure their Young People are listened to. We have set up three levels of #YouShape involvement, starting at Bronze (for printing off the Pledge and displaying it in your group), all the way up to Gold (which means your group is working in partnership with Young People to make decisions).
Wear their Necker project
To encourage Young People to take up adult volunteer positions in the future, the UK team have launched the Wear their Necker project. This is all about getting Young People to shadow Leaders to see what the role involves and understand how they could do the role. This could be as simple as a Scout running the Evening for the night, to an Explorer shadowing a District Commissioner. Why not give a Young Person the challenge of being your GSL for the day?
Remember Youth Shaped Scouting should always be fun! It's all about Young people working in partnership with adults to shape their Scouting adventure. It's a two way thing and something we should celebrate together!