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A Guide to Supporting Young People on Committees

Why young people on committees?

Introduction

This guidance is designed to help young people starting their role on Executive Committees. It should not be seen as a technical guide, but should point you in the right direction when getting started in the role. Policy, Organisation and Rules (POR) of The Scout Association contains the up-to-date rules of the Scouts.

Every week we give almost half a million people aged 6-25 the skills they need for school, college, university, the job interview, the important speech, the tricky challenge and the big dreams: the skills they need for life. It’s important then, that young people are involved and engaged with decision making at all levels in the Scouts.

Why young people on committees?

Being part of a committee is only one of the many ways in which young people can shape the Scouts, and it’s vital they are supported in doing this.

There are many benefits that Groups, Districts, Counties/Areas and Regions can gain by involving young people on their committees. These include:

  • taking advantage of the new ideas and perspectives, energy and enthusiasm of young people
  • becoming more diverse and representative of the membership
  • enabling young people to inform and influence the decisions that affect them and their peers.

As well as the benefits to the Scouts of including young people on committees, it can also value and benefit young people by:

  • helping them acquire experience and skills that they might not otherwise have the opportunity to gain until much further on in their education or careers
  • their CV and university application forms will benefit
  • they are able to help shape the development of the Scouts both locally and nationally.

None of the benefits to either the Scouts or young people will be realised unless everyone fully understands the role, and unless support is provided to allow young people to fulfil their role effectively.