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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

Investing a Beaver

Welcoming a new Beaver to the Colony (and the worldwide Scout family) is an exciting time, especially for the person making their Promise.

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You’ll need

  • Group scarves
  • Woggles
  • Badges
  • Certificates

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.

What’s an Investiture?

An Investiture is a ceremony where someone makes their Scout Promise – some people call them Promise ceremonies. It helps welcome new Beavers into Scouts, as they become a member of both their Colony and the worldwide Scout family. 

Investitures are important and special, but this doesn’t mean they have to be strict or scary! There are lots of ways to run an Investiture. It’s best to try and shape them to the individuals making their Promise to make the occasion even more special and memorable.

As long as each Investiture covers the main components (welcome, Promise, scarf), it’s up to you where you do them, what you say, and what other special tweaks or traditions you want to add in.

Preparing to make a Promise

  • Before they make their Promise, a Beaver should have plenty of time to look at the different Promises they can make and decide which one is right for them. Beavers might want to talk about their choice with their parents or carers. You can find all of the different options on for Making your Promise.
  • You could invite the Beavers’ parents or carers to watch their Investiture. It’s an important step in the Scout journey, so it’s nice to have people there to watch the occasion.
  • Make sure everything is ready before the Investiture begins. This includes preparing badges. Each Beaver needs a Group name tape, local Scout badge (for County and District, Region and Area, or Region and District), and, of course, the World Membership Badge. 
  • Remember to write the details on certificates and tie a friendship knot in (or put a woggle on) the Group scarves, too.

The Investiture

What an Investiture looks and feels like is up to you. Some people have old traditions that have been handed down, others enjoy inventing new traditions with their Colony.

There’s no one way to get it right – have fun making your Promise ceremonies exciting and unique. As long as you include a welcome, Promise, and scarf, any embellishment is yours to decide.

Here’s an idea of a structure you could use:

  1. Check in with the Beaver(s) making their Promise. How are they feeling? This is a great time to run through what to expect one last time – and to check what the Beaver(s) would like to do as well. Some prefer to stand at the front with a friend and some would rather say the Promise as a group - and that’s OK.
  2. Everyone should welcome the new Beaver to their Colony. It’s up to you how you do this. Some people use songs, rhymes or props, such as a cuddly toy or a flag. Others get people’s friends or Lodge Leaders involved. Some people salute, some people shake hands, and some might say poem, read a story, or do a dance.
  3. Give the Beaver making their Promise their Group Scarf. It should already be tied (or held with a woggle), so the Beaver should be able to just slip it on.
  4. The new Beaver should say their Promise, while making the Scout sign. To make the Scout sign, they should raise their right hand to about chest height, holding their middle three fingers up, and holding down their little finger with their thumb. If the Beaver’s signing their Promise, they should make the Scout sign at the beginning and end.
  5. Different people may want to make their Promise in different ways. Some people might be happy on their own in the spotlight, while others might want to say it line by line with a friend or volunteer.
  6. The person leading the Investiture should give the new Beaver their certificate and badges. Some people give the certificate and badges with their right hand, so they can shake hands with their left.
  7. Everyone should welcome the new Beaver. Making your Promise can be a big step, so don’t forget to say well done too.


Investitures remind everyone that they’re a local, national, and international citizen, and that they’re part of a community of Scouts with friends across the world. Today, there are about 40 million Scouts worldwide. Everyone should close their eyes (if they’re comfortable doing so) and think about how they’re connected to this huge Scout family that crosses time zones, countries, and languages. All of these Scouts have made a Promise. Everyone should talk with a partner about what their Promise means to them. People could think about being kind to others (which helps people to make friends), times they’ve been helpful, or examples of when they’ve done their best. Well done to everyone for all of the steps they’ve taken on their Scout journey – and especially to the new Beavers who made their Promise.


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.

While the Beaver making their Promise is getting ready, the other Beavers could prepare a something to welcome them and say well done. It could be a song, poem, drama, card, or drawing.

Investitures should always be tailored to the individual making their Promise – there’s no one size fits all here. Welcome people in a way that makes them feel happy; for example, if someone doesn’t like touching others, don’t ask them to shake hands. People can make their Promise however they like, whether they want to sign, repeat each line after the person leading the ceremony, or say the Promise at the same time as a friend. Some people may want a quiet space for their Investiture. Chat with everyone about how they’d like to make their Promise, and which version they’d like to say. It’s good to invite parents and carers to take part in this conversation too.

All Scout activities should be inclusive and accessible.

Where you hold your Promise ceremonies is up to you. You could choose somewhere special to your Group, or have them during an event like a camp, hike, or visit.

Young people should be involved in shaping their Promise ceremony so it’s unique to them.