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Volunteering at Scouts is changing to help us reach more young people

Volunteering is changing to help us reach more young people

Volunteering is changing at Scouts. Read more

Discover what this means

Create a YouthShaped art gallery

Put together an amazing art event to showcase the different outcomes of your YouShape Award experience.

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You’ll need

  • Pens or pencils
  • A4 paper
  • Card to mount art onto
  • Devices to play any videos or audio on
  • Headphones
  • Tables to display things on, such as sculptures
  • Space to hang any artwork on, such as display boards or walls
  • A way to hang artwork, such as sticky tack
  • Access to a printer
  • Any other equipment you need to allow the Squirrels to display and share their creations

Before you begin

·       Use the safety checklist to help you plan and risk assess your activity. Additional help to carry out your risk assessment, including examples can be found here.  Don’t forget to make sure all young people and adults involved in the activity know how to take part safely.

·       Make sure you’ll have enough adult helpers. You may need some parents and carers to help if you’re short on helpers.

Contribution to the YouShape Award

This activity may contribute towards the ‘Represent’ section of the YouShape Award, depending on the Scouts section you’re in. If this session completes the requirement for an individual or a group, you may want to hand the ‘Represent’ badge out at the end of the session. Remember, some people may not want to receive their badge or be celebrated individually in front of such a large audience. People may prefer to be given their badge in a normal meeting, rather than at an event.

Setting up this activity

·       You may want to run this event over two weeks. You could spend one week planning for the event, such as choosing artwork, printing pictures and putting artwork onto mounts, then use the second week to set up the display and invite people in.

·       Make sure equipment and materials are age appropriate. Make sure small objects are not put in mouths, ears and noses. Remind young people not to put anything in their mouth and wash hands regularly.

·       Remember to choose an appropriate and accessible venue, day and time to run an art gallery event. It may be during the latter half of your normal meeting. Make sure to give people plenty of notice and time, so they can attend.

Run the activity

1.     Gather everyone together and explain that you need to think of ways to show and tell people about what you’ve done, discovered and loved about the YouShape Award for the Represent part of the badge. One way of doing this is through putting together a gallery or exhibition of our work in the award.

2.     If everyone wants to organise an exhibition to show their YouShape Award work, encourage them to plan and run the event, and help them to choose what they’ll each display. Depending on what you’ve been working on, they could choose one piece each or choose multiple pieces per person.

3.     You’ll want to show the wide range of opportunities provided by the YouShape award. You may want to print and display photos from throughout the discovery stages and different activities. Including the planning and discovery stages can make the finished products that you display more impactful.

4.     Take time to mount your pieces on coloured card or put it in frames, so it looks like a real art gallery. You may be able to pick up some cheap frames in charity shops or supermarkets. You may want to make plinths out of cardboard. If you’re showing artwork, make sure you know what the right way up is, so the vision is communicated properly.

5.     Ask everyone to think of titles for their work. Create name and title tags for each piece, so everyone can see who created what.

6.     Ask everyone to design invites to take home for their parents, carers and people they live with. You could also invite other Scout sections or group volunteers.

7.     When the gallery is ready, open it. You could cut a ribbon across the door, then welcome everyone in. Remember to remind everyone to treat it like a real gallery, be quiet and respectful, and not touch the items on display.

8.     Some people might want to introduce their art piece and talk about why they wanted to share it. Some people might what to offer a guided tour. If there’s a particularly relevant community goal that you or someone was working towards, you could have a talk about it during the show.

9.     Everyone should enjoy the exhibition, take time to look at other people’s artwork, check on their guests and get feedback on their artwork. You might have a Q&A session at the end of the opening, where people can choose to share more about their experience doing the Award if they want to.

10.  You may want to keep the work on display for a while if your space will allow this. Alternatively, you can document the exhibition itself by taking photos and celebrating the occasion. Remember to follow our photography, video and audio recording advice, and put-up signs to tell everyone how to opt out of their photo being taken or image recorded.


This activity was all about bringing together all your YouShape Award work to show off your goals and achievements for the Represent badge. What was your favourite part of this activity? And what was your favourite part of the award?

You chose something to represent your work in the gallery. What did you choose and why did you choose it? What did you like about the gallery? How did it make you feel seeing everyone’s work all together? Did you have any favourite parts?

We invited people in to view the work. What was it like hosting the event? What went well? How did you work as a team? What was it like telling people about your work if you chose to do so? What would you do differently next time? Did people enjoy it?


All activities must be safely managed. You must complete a thorough risk assessment and take appropriate steps to reduce risk. Use the safety checklist to help you plan and risk assess your activity. Always get approval for the activity, and have suitable supervision and an InTouch process.

Phones and cameras

Make sure parents and carers are aware and have given consent for photography.


Supervise young people appropriately when they’re using scissors. Store all sharp objects securely, out of the reach of young people.

Glue and solvents

Always supervise young people appropriately when they’re using glue and solvent products. Make sure there’s plenty of ventilation. Be aware of any medical conditions that could be affected by glue or solvent use and make adjustments as needed.

Craft: Unusual substances

Supervise young people appropriately when they’re using unusual substances, such as powdered paint, ash or dirt. Be aware of any medical conditions that could be affected by what’s being used. Make sure you follow all relevant safety guidance or manufacturers guidelines, where available. Make sure you dispose of it appropriately too, in line with safety guidance.

To make it easier, you could put out pieces of work or photos for people to choose from.

·       There's a role for everyone during this activity. People can choose whether they take on a speaking or greeting role in this activity. Some people may not want to talk about their piece of work or experiences, and that’s OK. Instead, they or someone else could help them to write about their work and put it next to their piece. During the gallery, they help keep the art gallery tidy, serve cold snacks or help make some cold soft drinks.

·       If you’re serving food or drinks, remember to check for allergies, eating problems, fasting or dietary requirements and adjust the snacks or drinks as needed. This may include ensuring no cross-contamination during food preparation, too. Check if there are any items of food (or packaging) that people can’t touch or be near to or if there are items that people might not be comfortable using in the activity.

·       Make sure the gallery is accessible to everyone. Make sure to have walkways that are wide enough for wheelchair or mobility aid users, have ramps and disabled toilet access, make sure any signs are in a large print, use subtitles and audio descriptions if needed, choose a suitable venue with public transport access, and be mindful of noise sensitivities.

·    You may want to have a space for people to take a break if they’re overwhelmed. It may have colouring in, cuddly toys, sensory and fidget toys, soft seats or some books.

All Scout activities should be inclusive and accessible.