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."
It was a damp, cool day on Sunday 1st June, 2014 but that wasn't going to stop the official re-opening of our newly renovated scout hall. Many current members of 5th Footscray Scout Group and their families, along with a few ex-members, visitors and official guests gathered to celebrate this event. Scouts, Matt and Oscar greeted Brendan Watson - Victorian Chief Commissioner for Scouts, Bernie Finn MLC - Victorian MP for Western Metropolitan Region and Doug Dixon - Scouts Victorian Branch building supervisor and explained how the hall renovations had improved their scouting experience. Official greetings and speeches followed, and then an official commemorative plaque was unveiled. After the formal business was concluded, the children and some of the adults were keen to take a turn abseiling down the 8 metre tower set up in the park outside. Thanks to the very professional team from Scouts Victorian Branch Abseiling Council and their awesome mobile tower, many got to experience abseiling for the first, but probably not the last time. Those who weren't abseiling tried their hand at screen printing or making paper helicopters. With all this activity making people hungry, it was a good thing that there were plenty of BBQ sausages available as well as homemade scones with jam and cream. Thanks to the Rotary Club of Yarraville and Gerard White for allowing us the use of their BBQ trailer and for cooking the sausages. Thanks Akela for the scones. The dream of renovating the scout hall has taken about seven years to become a reality and only finally became possible in 2013 thanks to funding from the Victorian Government Department of Human Resources matched by funding from Scouts Australia. Although those grants account for the lion's share of the project's cost, sincere thanks must be given for the fundraising efforts of many parents over the last seven years, as well as the generous support from the Seddon Community Bank Branch of the Bendigo Bank, Yarraville Masonic Lodge, Omega Security Solutions and Mrs Beryl Whittle who have all helped make this a possibility.
The District Joey Sleepover at 5th Footscray was a great success and may become an annual event. The Joey sleepover on Friday 16th March was a major success. Everyone enjoyed themselves and we are now looking to do this as an annual district event. We had three activity bases running - two were craft and the third was at the playground behind the hall. Luckily the rain stayed away and it was dry enough to play. The Joeys must have been tired out because on Saturday morning they slept in until 7:15am (good for the leaders). We thought they would be up at 6.30am so we decided not to do the craft activity we had planned. We walked down to Yarraville Gardens in the morning sunshine and played a few games. At 10am the children were picked up after a very successful first district Joey sleepover.