Hi, I’m jack I am a Liverpool North Explorer, and I’m a part of the youth shaped team.
YouShape month is so important as it helps emphasise how important it is for young people to find their voices. For example, just before the first lockdown my Explorer Unit had a camp, but unlike most camps we decided and planned everything ourselves. We planned all our activities, planned, prepared and cooked all of our meals… and we even had to go shopping before hand to get all our food and equipment! Personally, I have been able to have this sort of influence on camps ever since I first joined as a scout and it is one of the many reasons I love Scouting so much. Even more recently I have been helping to plan and run a small part of one of our Explorer meeting nights, during YouShape month to show its importance.
YouShape doesn’t always need to be a massive responsibility, no one expects a Beaver to plan and deliver a whole camp, but even something as small as giving them the opportunity to chose a game or activity massively improve their experience and even help to build their confidence and leadership skills.
I am also a Young Leader for a Cub section, and before each term the leaders have a meeting to plan what we will be doing for the next few weeks. Even though we have a plan, we ask our Cubs what activities and badges they have enjoyed doing and ask if they have any new suggestions of what they would want to do in the future; whether that be activities or badges or even day trips. We even ask them what camps they have enjoyed the most and any new locations they would like us to visit. We make sure to take all of these notes into our next planning meeting so that we can make the nights as enjoyable and as tailored to the Cubs as we possibly can so that they are getting the best experience possible out of our nights.