During June, there were a couple of Virtual Camps at a Regional and District Level.

 South East Scotland Scouts LongestDay SleepOut

Saturday 20th June was the Longest Day of the year so we wanted to ensure our young people and adults/leaders got the opportunity to take advantage of the 17 hours, 36 minutes and 34 seconds of daylight with a series of challenges and activities to undertake during daylight hours followed by a “virtual camp”

The challenges, all with a “sun” or “longest” theme included building the longest bridge using a cereal box, blowing out a candle from the longest distance, painting summer solstice stones, and building a model solar system. In the morning, we had a Long-Distance Scouting presentation with welcomes from Scouts in six countries across the world – Sri Lanka, New Zealand, South Africa, Colombia, the USA and Ireland. We had a family quiz and a virtual camp fire to round off the day before over 1,200 Beavers, Cubs, Scouts, Explorers, Network members, parents and leaders slept out, either in the garden or in “den’s in their homes.

Next morning, the camp closed with a brilliant Scouts’ Own by five Explorers – Niamh, James, Oran, Colin and Callum – focusing on the Scout Values of integrity, respect, care, belief and co-operation. Tim Kidd, UK Chief Commissioner, The Scouts said “I have just watched the video – excellent reflection with lots of great ideas and examples. Please tell those involved that I thought it was great!”

We had over 900 photos or videos posted on our various social media sites, demonstrating how our young people (and adults/leaders) rose to the challenges and took part in the activities – we have shown a selection here plus a video of the t-bag/water throw challenge. There was also a two-page feature about the camp in the Edinburgh Evening News.

Solstice Stone Nevis, Tranent Scouts

Solar System – Calum 1st Longniddry Cubs

51st Pentland Wild West Virtual Camp

51st Pentland (Balerno) Scouts ran a virtual camp during the Covid-19 lockdown from 13th-14th June 2020.  The event was organised by the Monday Scouts who chose a “Wild West” theme and invited the other three Balerno Troops. In total there were 70 Scouts & Leaders signed up for the event. The camp ran for 24 hours and Scouts could choose to sleep in a tent in their garden or an indoor homemade den. 

Scouts and leaders donned cowboy hats, checked shirts and scarves, fully embracing the Wild West theme. We all changed our Zoom names to something appropriate, e.g. Smokey the Sheriff, or Sun Dance Kid.  We had Zoom meetings spaced out throughout the camp where they were given challenges including cooking dinner and breakfast on an outdoor fire/stove, a tricky Wild West Scavenger Hunt, a line dance, best cowboy joke, tin-can alley, making a ‘Wanted’ poster and learning the Highwayman’s Hitch (just in case they needed to tie up a horse). 

Scouts took part in the camp with incredible energy and enthusiasm, they seemed delighted to meet their friends online and have exciting challenges to take part in. Points were awarded for meals, challenges and tent/den inspection.  We used the private Facebook group to create the sense of community that we all needed. We relied on parents to upload the evidence and supervise the fires: they were amazing and we owe much of the camp’s success to them. Family members were in the background watching and joining in.  There was a plethora of photos and videos uploaded throughout the event for the leaders to judge, and we added points to a shared online spreadsheet as we went along.  The evening campfire was a challenge as group singing doesn’t seem to translate to Zoom due to the time delay and tuning!  What worked for us was playing a few well-known Scout songs as backing tracks and we all listened and sang quietly. 

The UK Chief Commissioner, Tim Kidd, had mentioned on Twitter that leaders could ‘request a member of Team UK attend their event’.  A few hours before our first Zoom meeting I messaged asking if anyone was free, not expecting a reply.  We were delighted that Tim himself was able to join us. He spoke about kindness & being helpful, what we’ve learnt during lockdown.  The Scouts thought he was ‘very funny’ and he really captured their attention when speaking. He also joined in the Line Dance and performed rather well!  

A short video of the event can be found at https://vimeo.com/scoobythescout. We felt the event really exceeded expectations in terms of participation; the Scouts thought it was ‘almost as good as a real camp’. Without the smoky washing and sleep deprivation of course.  There was something very special about it, for a while we all forgot about Coronavirus and there was a sense of normality again.  If you are thinking about a virtual camp, we would all highly recommend it.

Scooby (Lindsay Brown)
Section Leader, Balerno Monday Scouts

SESSleepOut – Badges

Following the SESSleepOut in April, where nearly 1,000 young people and adults camped out for one or more nights, we have now distributed the badges to the District Commissioners – so if you registered your attendance then you will have or will soon receive your badge.

Thanks go to Isaac and Reuben from the 85th Braid Scouts who designed the badge for the SESSleepOut – well done – a terrific badge.