Youth Involvement

To meet our Vision Toward 2018, young people across all ages will have the chance to have their voice heard on all aspects of Scouting, including programme and activity planning and the way that their Group is run.

This is to ensure that Scouting meets their needs and remains relevant to their interests.

Youth involvement includes young people doing the following:

  • sharing their ideas
  • learning from and teaching each other and adults
  • taking part in decision making
  • assisting with planning the programme, including activities and camps
  • becoming more involved in all aspects of Scouting

Apply to be a Youth Trustee

Youth-shaped Scouting is at the heart of our Scouting for All strategy. By allowing young people to shape their own experience at Scouts, we can deliver even more exciting and life-changing experiences to our member.

We are currently recruiting an Elected Youth Member to our board of trustees. Becoming a Trustee with The Scout Association is an experience like no other for 18-25 year olds. It opens up a huge array of opportunities to shape the organisation and provides a valuable insight into one of the UK’s best known charities.

Download the Youth Trustee information pack here to find out more about the role. Apply here. The deadline for applications is 5pm on July 3.

The process for becoming a Trustee is a formal election. This means that you need to be proposed and seconded by members of Council (check out who is a member in the info pack) before your nomination can proceed. The deadline for your Council member proposer and seconder to submit their online forms is 5pm on July 10.   The biography you submit, along with the statements from your proposer and seconder, will be circulated to all members of Council who will vote for their preferred candidate.   The election results will be announced on 12 September.

Good luck!

Why is youth involvement important?

In order for the Vision to be achieved, young people need to become more actively involved in every aspect of Scouting, which will allow the Movement to continue to grow and meet the needs of young people.

It will also help leaders to keep their section growing and interested. We don’t know what the needs and interests of young people are until we ask them, and improving youth involvement will give leaders more opportunities to find out what young people actually want.

The climbing wall of youth involvement

The climbing wall has been created to assist the development of youth involvement in Scouting, and identifies seven steps for youth involvement.

It is important to understand that improving youth involvement is not simply a case of moving up the wall and staying there; it is a fluid model, and your position on the wall will change over time and as the young people in your section change.

For example, when the young people in your section are new they will require more guidance, and the activity, for example planning a camp, will be at a lower level on the wall.

As your young people begin to use their initiative more for subsequent events then your section will move up the wall, but when these young people move on and new members join, the process may start again.

Your section can also be at different levels for different activities. These are some examples of how activities within a Cub Pack can be at different levels, and these examples can be applied to all sections:

  • If leaders ask the Cubs what they would like to do next term and the decision on what ends up in the programme is shared between adults and young people, then this would be level 6 on the climbing wall.
  • If the Cubs give their views on what they would like to be included, and these views inform adult-made decisions about the content of the programme, for example those made at leader’s meetings, then this is level 5.
  • If adults plan a camp, and Sixers are assigned the role of showing other Cubs how to put out their sleeping bags, then this is level 4, as the Cubs have been told what to do rather than coming up with the idea themselves.

Anything above and including level 4 is classed as youth involvement, and for some activities, level 5 or 6 may be the most appropriate, so you do not always have to achieve level 7 in everything your unit does for effective youth involvement to be in place.

Youth involvement is about giving young people the opportunity to get involved; the level at which they do this needs to be right for you, your Leadership team and the young people themselves.

Download the Climbing wall of youth involvement (jpg) and the Climbing Wall Handout

Youth Involvement Toolkit

There are activities available to support adult leaders to enable young people in the section to share their views and shape their Scouting experiences. There are activities for all five sections and these can be found in Programmes Online (POL) and by searching ‘youth involvement’.