May provided a lot of opportunities for me to meet with members from across the Region – whether at Borders District Cub camp (where as you can see in the picture I got a bit wet), presenting Chief Scout’s Silver Awards to the 122nd Craigalmond Cubs, enjoying the spectacular PentJam or celebrating the 4th Braid Scout Group’s 90th Birthday, I have really enjoyed the opportunity to engage with young people and adult volunteers and to hear first hand about the amazing opportunities that Scouting has provided to them.
As I have visited all these events I have also been struck by how we as a Region benefit from the diversity that we have in our membership – from the experienced Cub leader with 30+ years experience to the volunteer who is attending their first Scouting event, our experiences and skills, regardless of our background, gender, sexual identity, race or age, add something unique to South East Scotland Scouts!
However, we do recognise that there is more that we need to do to make sure that Scouting is open to all and that we as a Region are representative of our communities. This is why inclusivity is one of the key goals of our Regional Strategy and is one of the key focuses for me and the Regional Leadership.
One of the key ways that we are supporting this goal is through the Regional Inclusion Fund which makes £10,000 available each year for initiatives which support our Strategic aim of:
The Fund is open to Sections, Groups, Districts or Regional led activity. More information including possible initiatives which this funding could be used to support and how to apply are available here.
One way that this funding can be used is to support participation in inclusion focused events. We are looking forward to our first Regional presence at Edinburgh Pride on Saturday 24th June where we are joining with Girlguiding Edinburgh and Girlguiding Midlothian .
The first week of June is Volunteers’ Week so I would like to take this opportunity to thank all of you for the unique contribution that you make to Scouting within the Region and for the time that you give to support our members – young people and fellow volunteers – in gaining Skills For Life.
As we look forward to summer activities and camps, I hope that you will all have the opportunity to take some downtime during the summer break and recharge.