5th Footscray Scouts took the skies and flew over Melbourne last month thanks the the Scouts Victoria Air Activities team, whose team of pilots gave the Scouts a chance to experience Melbourne from above.
Congratulations to Cub Scout Jayde, who tonight was awarded her Grey Wolf Award: the highest award attainable by Cubs aged 8-11. She's had to learn new skills, discover her community, help other people and even plan her own adventures to earn this prestigious award.
Less than 10% of Cub Scouts earn the Grey Wolf Award: In order the complete all requirements, young Cubs must become involved in their community and prepare themselves for both adventure and life, with challenges including learning first aid skills, attending intensive practical leadership training with other Cubs and even planning and leading a day hike with minimal adult supervision. It's a program which is designed to give Cubs independence and self-management skills, and recipients often report increased success in school and readiness for teenage years.
Despite her success, Jayde isn't resting on her laurels. Having just turned 11, the young adventurer is looking forward to moving from Cubs to Scouts, where she'll take on bigger challenges designed to give young adults aged 11-15 opportunities to explore their world and choose their own paths. She says she's excited to be taking the next step in her Scouting journey, but that she'll also always remember the lessons learned during her time in Cubs.
It's hard to explain just how much happens in a single year at our Troop, but here are the numbers:
nights spent camping
Pioneer (red) Cords awarded
new adult Leaders
Australian Scout Medallions
Amazing Scout Troop!
The best parts of what we do can't be quantified though: The independence our Scouts gain, the adventures they go on, the laughter and fun times are too many to be counted.
If you'd like to be part of the action in 2016, contact Scout Leader Jonas Anderson on 0415 652 553 or at email@example.com to find out how you can become part of 5th Footscray Scout Troop.
Congratulations to Oscar and Matt who have achieved the highest award possible in the Scout section. On Saturday 14th November 2015, they were both presented with the Australian Scout Medallion along with 140 other scouts from across Victoria. To achieve the ASM, scouts must have achieved their Adventurer Cord and also have demonstrated an active leadership role in Scouting. They must have demonstrated abilities in campcraft and citizenship, as well as in an area of their choice such as water activities, construction, environment or emergencies amongst other things. To earn the ASM is a major achievement for any young person and the pinnacle of their scouting journey to this point. Matt and Oscar are both well equipped to have further success and show their leadership skills as they move to the Venturer section for the next part of their scouting adventure.
Over the course of the weekend, Scouts were challenged to built their own shelters to sleep in, locate hidden supplies and navigate across 7km of bush so they could reach the “emergency extraction point” – the local train station, where Scouts caught a train heading back to Melbourne at the end of the weekend. A local Country Fire Authority brigade even provided a truck and crew to enhance the realism of the scenario.
Although tired and muddy by the end of the weekend, it was clear every Scout would happily repeat the experience. “It was great fun,” said Olivia, 13. “Scouts is the only place where we get to try things like this and really push our boundaries.”
Five Scouts aged 11-15 have just returned from a three-day adventure undertaken almost entirely independently of adults thanks to game-changing new technology. Equipped with extensive hiking knowledge and a GPS tracking and communication device, several Scouts from 5th Footscray Scout Troop spent last weekend hiking 32km across the Brisbane Ranges free of adults, with Scout Leaders monitoring the hike remotely. A tiny SPOT tracker – small enough to fit in the palm of your hand – allowed adult Scout Leaders to track the progress of the group in real-time, while the Scouts had the ability to contact the Leaders and even emergency services despite limited mobile phone reception in the Ranges.
Rain and clouds weren't enough to stop more than a dozen Joeys, Cubs and Scouts aged 7-14 from 5th Footscray Scout Group participating in National Tree Planting Day. Despite the poor weather, the Scouts worked enthusiastically alongside the Friends of Cruickshank Park to help plant trees and ground cover near the new playground outside Clare Court Kindergarten.
"It's great fun, actually," said Matt, 14, who spent the afternoon helping younger Cubs and Joeys with the planting process. Leaders were not surprised at how willing Scouts were to help. "Giving back to the community is a big part of Scouting," said Scout Leader Jonas Anderson. "It's great to see so many of our youth members keen to help care for the parks they enjoy so much."
They may not be old enough to drive, but that didn't stop 5th Footscray Scouts when they arrived at this year's District Scout Billy Cart Derby. Throughout the day, 18 5th Footscray Scouts competed in a variety of events against Scouts from across the District.
"Scouting isn't about winning, it's about friendship and fun. The enthusiasm and spirit seen in our Scouts today was spectacular - they're a team who works together and are enjoying adventures like this that they wouldn't normally get to try," said Scout Leader Jonas Anderson
Although next year's Billy Cart Derby is 12 months away, the Scouts are already keen to begin preparations. New, faster billy carts and even a local event organised by the Scouts themselves were both discussed. When it comes to making their own adventures, 5th Footscray Scouts are never far from excitement.
Five local Scouts aged 11-14 were recognized for their community involvement and personal growth when awarded the Pioneer Cord tonight. Amelie, Olivia, Ruby, Jasper and Lachlan have all spent more than a year working towards the award, which recognizes both Scouting skills learnt such as navigation in the bush and water safety, but also personal growth and character. “The award is a huge step for any Scout,” said Scout Leader Jonas Anderson, “and earning it has required all five Scouts to show substantial maturity and initiative.” Planning their own camps – including organising details such as food and transport – was just one such activity Scouts had to undertake. “These young people are demonstrating a level of independence and self-organisation that many people don’t develop until years later,” said Anderson.
Although the Scouts were excited to receive the award, all were looking forward to new adventures. “Learning to make it all happen ourselves was cool,” says Amelie, 12. “I can’t wait for the rest of the camps we’re going on this year.”