Scouts are today launching the #GoodForYou campaign designed to recruit adult volunteers in Cardiff and the Vale of Glamorgan to help young people to reconnect, supporting their wellbeing and building their skills for life.
Youth membership in Cardiff and Vale Scouts has fallen by 28% over the past year, falling from 3,646 last year to 2,623. Adult volunteer numbers in are also down from 1,116 in 2020 to 1,029 for 2021. This drop in numbers follows a sustained period of growth, where total membership rose by nearly 53% (over 1,600) between 2006 and 2020 across the area.
These numbers are an indicator of how the pressures and disruptions to life over the past year mean not all youth members have been able to continue. This is especially the case in communities disproportionately impacted by the pandemic.
Scout groups across Cardiff and Vale are now looking to build back better and empower the Covid generation when they need most. To do this Scouts need more adults to step up and volunteer to lead young people. Scout volunteers will create opportunities for young people to recover from the impact of the pandemic by supporting their wellbeing and building the skills needed to succeed in life.
Julian Jordan, Area Commissioner Cardiff and Vale Scouts said:
“Young people have missed out on so much in the past 15 months and our numbers show how many were unable to continue with Scouts due to lockdown. The good news is they are coming back, so we need more people to help us ensure young people can meet friends, have fun and fulfil their potential by learning skills for life. That’s why today we’re calling on people to volunteer for Scouts. Volunteering is good for communities, good for young people and good for you. Please helps us to give more young people skills for life while having fun and learning new skills yourself. There are many ways to get involved so please get in touch.”
Over the next six months the Scouts will be running a series of locally focused recruitment campaigns across the UK, including in Cardiff and Vale designed to encourage those young people and adults who drifted away during the pandemic re-join and to create new Scout groups in areas of greatest need. The campaign will be designed to appeal to new adult volunteers and emphasis why volunteering is good for your health, happiness, skill development and family life.
Since the first lockdown, Scout volunteers have provided thousands of hours of Zoom sessions, supported young people with at-home challenges like the Great Indoors and Hike to the Moon. And when restrictions have allowed, have run socially-distanced meet ups.
Will, a Cub Scout from Pentwyn:
“Over the last year, my Scout Group has helped me stay connected with my friends and community. I’ve taken part in activities on Zoom learning to cook, take photos, help around the home and most importantly, through Scouts, I’ve still been able to see my friends and leaders”
Gareth Johns a Scout Volunteer from St Mellons said
“In my area, Scouting is a lifeline for those in areas of deprivation – during the pandemic it became a beacon of normality for young people and help them keep a positive mental attitude during a difficult time. I know that Scouting helped me get through the last year as well. Scouting makes such a difference to young people’s lives in the long term, plus it’s a great way for adults to have fun too”
Bear Grylls, Chief Scout:
“The past year has been so tough for so many. And it’s also shown just how important it is for us to work together to help those in need. Scouts plays a fundamental role in the lives of thousands of young people and our goal is to build back our membership by welcoming thousands of new volunteers across the movement. As an adult volunteer you can help us continue to make an incredible contribution towards helping young people learn new skills for life. You’ll gain some great new skills, new friends and be part of empowering young people to be prepared for their future.”
For more information on volunteering see www.scouts.org.uk/volunteer and follow the hashtag #GoodForYou on social media.