Skip to main content

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
Blog | 11 May 2023

Bear honours Queen’s and King’s Scouts at Windsor

Chief Scout, Bear Grylls OBE

On 23 April 2023, Chief Scout, Bear Grylls OBE, gave a motivating keynote address at St George’s Chapel, Windsor. He celebrated our award holders, including the first ever King’s Scouts, the recipients of the highest accolade for Scouts in the UK. Here are the words Bear shared with them on the day.

Being a part of this Scout celebration here at Windsor is always special. But it’s special because of YOU.

All of you here – you’re our bravest, our brightest and our best. You’re the dreamers, the doers and the change makers. And you’re the reason I’m so proud to be your Chief Scout.

To be here today, whether you’re a Queen’s Scout, a King’s Scout, a gallantry award winner or a volunteer hero, takes effort and hard work. It takes something extraordinary and often a moment of huge courage. And courage is in our DNA as Scouts.

But courage isn’t just about the past and what we’ve done. Courage is also about the future, and how we choose to live our lives.

Chief Scout Bear Grylls is standing in a chapel holding a microphone as he gives a speech. Stood behind him are a row of Scouts in uniforms and neckers.
Bear giving the keynote address in St George’s Chapel, Windsor.

When I first joined Cubs, I was the shyest kid in the room. I just wanted to vanish. In fact, I still do sometimes – like about two minutes ago!

But the bravest thing we can sometimes do in life is to consciously choose to tackle the difficult, to fully embrace the challenges of life, head on. To be a sticker, a stander upper, and a never give upper!

Because the truth about this King’s Scout Parade, and this whole day, is that it isn’t the end of your journey – it’s really the beginning.

The world needs leaders like you like never before. There’re conflict and hardships almost everywhere we look. There’s disunity and often fear. Yet, there’s also such HUGE potential for good.

When I went to Ukraine to meet with President Zelenskyy of Ukraine a few months ago, I saw a man coping with the biggest challenges and obstacles you can imagine. Yet his face was bright. Full of hope.

Because challenges unite us – and they IG-nite us. They bring out the best in us. We are designed for challenge. And Scouts embodies that.

Bear Grylls is wearing a necker and standing on grass. He's bending over to shake the hand of a Scout in uniform who's in a wheelchair. Behind them are rows of other Scouts also in uniforms and neckers.
Bear Grylls shaking a Scout's hand at Windsor Castle.

The world needs Scouts like you, more than ever, to show a kinder way in how we live, and a more dynamic and inspiring way to tackle life. To embody with that Scouts purpose and resilience. Just look how far we’ve all come already.

All across the world, Scouts is giving memories and skills that can, and often do, last a lifetime. Since 2009, when I first stood as Chief Scout in this chapel, the Scout movement in the UK alone had helped more than two million young people experience friendship and adventure.

We’ve opened more groups in the country’s most challenging areas than ever before, changing young lives and their opportunities. We’ve listened, we’ve adapted, and we’ve grown. There’s a reason we’re called a movement and not an organisation. We move with the times.

But, together, we can still do so much more.

I gave each of you a scroll at the beginning of this address. What’s inside represents YOU. I’m going to ask you to stand up one at a time and open it.

Bear Grylls is standing in front of a row of Scouts in uniform inside St George's Chapel. Each Scout and Bear is holding a piece of paper with a letter on, spelling out the word 'POTENTIAL.'
Bear Grylls gave each young person a sign with a letter on to spell out the word ‘Potential.’

Because, when I look around this chapel, this is what I see. This is what Scouts does best. We realise potential. We equip, we prepare, we encourage, then we watch as young people soar. Potential. This church is electric with it.

Scouts has given all of you the fuel, the skills, the opportunities. But, YOU must now be the ones that run and USE it. 

So, go out there and change the world for the better. Change your community for the better. Change your life for the better. You can do that!

Because one thing I know for sure, and I’ve learned this first hand over 14 of the most incredible years as Chief Scout, is that Scouts can do anything!

Share this story