What is Youth Involvement?

Simply put, Youth Involvement is getting our members aged 6-25 making or influencing the decisions that affect them. This could be as basic as a Cub Scout running a game of their choice to Explorer Scouts planning and running their own camp.

Our aim is for Scouting to be truly Youth-Led - with our members working in partnership with adults at all levels of our movement. We want young people and our adult supporters to work together at section, group, district, county and region levels and nationally.

This means everyone can do something to boost representation of Young People within their own roles

This aim and others are part of our Vision 2018 [video link].

What will You and Young People get out of it?

The benefits of getting our younger members involved are numerous. It is part of our aim to help young people achieve their full potential and getting them to participate in this way helps them

·         learn skills in decision-making, working with others and compromise

·         gain a sense of ownership and pride

·         become inspired to take on their own projects

·         allow leaders to take a back-seat whilst they plan and run their own programmes

·         feel more comfortable with moving into the next section

·         taking the steps to become involved as a Young Leader or adult leader

Who is already working on this?

You are not alone! Across the country there have been many successful adoptions of youth involvement, from youth forums in Hampshire and South-East London to projects in the Scottish regions and Dorset. Meanwhile, the Youth Involvement Working Group (YIWG) helps set the direction of Youth Involvement at headquarters and supports the Youth Involvement champions of local Scouting.

In Suffolk, I am here to help support the forming and implementing of our Youth Involvement strategy. This is going to be the product of a partnership between adult leaders and our youth members. I’m also here to support young people and adult members alike in taking on their own youth involvement projects.

What resources can I use?

If you’re looking for inspiration or help for a Youth Involvement project you can take a look at the following resources, including the County Strategy as it is updated and articles or presentations from scouts or external sources.

·         County Strategy for Youth Involvement [Coming Soon]

·         Magazine Articles

o      Spandango

o    Getting YP involved in Scouting and What is the YIWG Anyway?

Who can I contact?

To raise an issue for a forum to consider, to get ideas about how to increase YI in your Section, Unit, Network or District or to let me know what other resources you would find helpful please contact:

Ollie Smith (County Youth Commissioner)