We want more young people in Wrexham to be able to enjoy the adventure of Scouting, so we want to grow the numbers of both young people and the adults who are crucial to support them.
When most people think of growth, they think of recruitment. But if we don’t ensure that those who we recruit are welcomed properly, then looked after, if we don’t manage their possible succession through the movement and don’t handle their leaving properly, we will lose them.
We want everyone in the District to read through the links below which give some great ideas of how to recruit adults and young people, properly look after their induction, support them once they’ve settled, succession plan and manage exit.
Here are some ideas how to recruit adults – click on the link where available
- Don’t even start recruiting until you’ve planned the induction step
- Tell people about the fun you have and invite them to join!
- If you’re recruiting for a specific role, use the 6 Steps of Recruitment
- If you’re looking for extra support from parents, try the 4 Week Challenge – materials to support this are on the Brand Centre, search for ‘recruitment’
- Another great way of showing parents how much fun we have is Family camps
- We can all get the help of the ScoutsCymru Development Officer
- Ask parents & carers of new Youth members
- If you’re really struggling to recruit leaders, consider moving the night you meet
Once we’ve recruited adults, it’s essential to make them feel welcome and that their time is being used efficiently – find out about the next step: Induction
Here is the process for welcoming new adults – click on the link where available
- Make sure they have something to do on their first few meetings and have another adult or Young Leader ‘buddy’ them
- Give them a copy of our District Welcome Pack
- Give them space – let them come for a few weeks before settling on a role – they don’t need a DBS check at this stage*
- Agree their role and ensure they are aware of their responsibilities
- Avoid jargon – it may say in POR about whether the GSL has to fill in a Form NAN, but who knows what any of this means!?
- Complete their Adult Information Form and meet with Sandra
- If a completely new team of Leaders are starting at a Section, try Incubation or Masterclassing
- DBS check and references completed
- Meet with Appointments Advisory Committee
- Chat with Line Manager to check they are happy and everything is still OK
- Complete their Getting Started training
Once we’ve welcomed new adults and made sure they’ve found their feet, it’s essential to provide ongoing support so they continue to enjoy their Scouting – find out about the next step: Support
*adults only need a DBS check if they have unsupervised access to young people, or are assisting with an overnight activity
Here are some ideas on providing continuing support for adults – click on the link where available
- Make sure there is always something to look forward to – a large camp or event on the horizon which keeps everyone excited for the future
- Ensure all adults have had a review recently – whether it’s the required formal review of their appointment, or an informal chat to check everything is OK
- Is everyone’s training up to date?
- Have all adults in the Section been given the opportunity to hold responsibility, whether it be planning and running a night of their own, or looking after something like subs collection or sorting the stores
- How often does your team get together socially? Now and again it’s great to meet up and go for a meal or something
- Is the volunteer eligible for a Long Service or Good Service Award?
- Do you celebrate success? Doing a slideshow of photos of your best activities is great to show parents, but it also gives all the Leaders and Young Leaders something to feel proud of and look back on
- Is your programme well planned and does everyone know what they’re doing? One way to lose volunteers is for a chaotic week by week programme where nobody every knows what’s going on
- How often do you meet with other Groups and join in with District activities – it’s good for adults to meet other people in their role in a different Group and share experiences
If we’re not careful things can get stale if the same leaders are in place for many years, sometimes we need to mix things up a bit – find out about the next step: Succession
Here are some ideas on keeping your adult leadership team fresh – click on the link where available
- Recognise that some ‘churn’ is healthy if managed – a Section which has exactly the same leaders running things for years is likely to get stale
- It’s a good idea for experienced leaders to mentor younger or newer leaders and keep an eye on their development
- Does every Section have Young Leaders – let us know if you’d like a Young Leader and don’t have one
- Is there the opportunity for additional challenges for existing leaders, maybe a District role or helping another Section in the Group?
- More and more adults volunteer as parents of young people in a younger Section and then move with them as they move up – be aware of this and plan for it
Sometimes adult volunteers will want to, or need to leave – find out how we can manage this in the best way: Exit
Here are some ideas what to do if an adult wants to leave – click on the link where available
- Ask them to reconsider if we changed something
- Ask if they’d like to take on another role
- Ascertain why they left
- Ask them if they’d be willing to fill in this form
- Was there anything we could have done which would have made them stay
- Ensure their roles are ended on Compass in good time
- Thank them for their help and consider giving them something to remind them of their time
Adults will always leave at some stage, so we will always need to think about recruiting more, so back to stage one: Recruitment
Here are some ideas how to recruit young people – click on the link where available
- Encourage Scouts to tell friends about the fun they have
- Shout about your Scouting – lots of photos of the fun you’re having on your Facebook Group or contact us if you want to feature in the media
- Hold an Open Night
- Get young people to bring a friend
- Aim to recruit more girls – it’s not enough just to ‘allow’ them to join, lots still don’t know they can!
- Hold a Family Camp to recruit siblings
- If you struggle to recruit, consider moving the night you meet
- Keep your Online Scout Manager up to date so our Membership Enquiries know where there are spaces for those who contact us wanting to join
- If your Section is ‘full’ is there any way you can let more in, perhaps with more adults support?
Once we’ve recruited new young people, it’s essential to make them feel welcome – find out about the next step: Induction
Here are some ideas on welcoming new adults – click on the link where available
- Make sure there is something great happening the first time they come
- Give them a buddy to look after them on their first night
- Tell them about a camp on the horizon
- Make sure they complete their Membership badge & have a memorable investiture in first few months
Once we’ve welcomed new young people and made sure they’ve found their feet, it’s essential to provide ongoing challenges and support so they continue to enjoy their Scouting – find out about the next step: Support
Here are some ideas on making sure Scouting stays enjoyable and challenging for young people – click on the link where available
- Make sure each young person always has something to look forward to – say a big camp or event
- A great programme is what will keep young people coming back – how often do you plan? It’s fine to cancel one meeting per term so that the Leaders can get together to plan if you don’t have time otherwise
- Give each young person increasing challenge appropriate to their age, it’s possible for example to get older Scouts to be putting up a mess tent while the younger ones are putting up a patrol tent
- Also, give them increasing responsibility as they get older, for example making them a Seconder or Patrol Leader
- Every young person should be gaining badges regularly throughout their time in the Section
- Camping is why most young people love Scouting, so try to give them the chance to attend a camp or night away once a term
- Ask them what they think! Remember we aim to be Youth Shaped
- An opportunity to meet other Scouts from a different Group, District, County or even Country is a great way to keep the buzz – there are over 30 million Scouts worldwide, it’s one of our strengths so why not celebrate that fact!
It’s important to think about young people’s journey through Scouting, when they move on to the next Section, and when they reach adulthood – find out about the next step: Succession
We need to make sure moving on to the next Section is something young people are keen to do – this is a time when we lose lots of youth members so it’s key. We also need to make sure young people are aware of opportunities when they turn 18.
Lots of young people moving on to the next Section, or turning 18, at the same time can pose a threat to the Section they are moving on from if it’s not managed properly, so there are some suggestions on this too.
Click on the link where available…
- Hold regular joint activities with older/younger Sections so they are aware of what’s next
- Talk to them about moving on to the next Sections in plenty of time
- Work towards their Moving On Award
- Plan ahead to start recruiting younger ones to replace them
- Attempt an even spread across age range
- For those approaching 18 talk about leadership opportunities and Network
Sometimes young people will want to leave – find out how we can manage this in the best way: Exit
Here are some ideas what to do if a young person wants to leave – click on the link where available…
- Don’t give up on them!
- Ask them/their parents to reconsider if we changed something
- Ask if they’d like to move to another Section
- Ascertain why they left (if lots are leaving at a certain age, perhaps its because they’re rugby club training night has changed to clash with Scouts?)
- Was there anything we could have done which would have made them stay
If you do have young people leaving, then you need to Recruit…
We’re asking Groups to invite us along to talk to you about these ideas and how they work for you.