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Running your Colony

Advice and resources for the day-to-day running of a Beaver Scout Colony.

Ceremonies in the Beaver Scout Colony

There are a number of ceremonies that take place in the Beaver Scout section.

Gather Logs

The leader calls out 'gather logs' and the Beavers hold hands and form the largest possible circle around the leader. The Beavers drop their hands and the Beaver who is being presented with the badge(s) joins the leader in the centre of the circle and the leader explains what the badge means, where it is worn and congratulates the Beaver. The Beavers then make tail-slapping sounds by clapping hands behind their backs. The leader calls out 'build a dam', and the Beavers take five big steps into the middle and slowly raise their joined hands and shout ’well done’.

Marking a special occasion

The leader calls out 'build a dam' to ensure a circle is formed around the leader and the Beavers whose special occasion it is (e.g. a birthday). The Beavers sing 'happy birthday'. This is followed by an appropriate celebration, like blowing out candles and eating cake.

When a Beaver leaves the Colony

This is a sad occasion for everyone but one that should be made special for each Beaver who is leaving as well as their friends.

The leader calls out 'build a dam' and the Beavers form a circle around the leader and the Beaver who is leaving. The leader recalls how well the Beaver has done in the Colony and presents them with an appropriate letter, card or certificate, which wishes them well. The leader calls out 'goodbye', and the Beavers spell out the word ‘G-O-O-D-B-Y-E’ as they step backwards and follow the last letter by shouting out the name of the Beaver who is leaving.

Moving up to Cubs

These ceremonies, which link the Beaver Scout Colony and the Cub Scout Pack, are a joint venture arranged between the Colony and Pack leadership teams. Colonies should consider inviting parents/carers to attend this important step in the Beaver’s life. This ceremony is also the time when the Moving On Award is presented and the Scout Promise is reaffirmed.

It's worth noting that a Beaver may already have been presented with the Group scarf by the Group Scout Leader whilst in the Colony. In this instance it should not be re-presented at the Cub’s investiture ceremony. A Beaver may wear the Chief Scout’s Bronze Award on the Cub Scout uniform until the Chief Scout’s Silver Award is gained, at which time the Bronze Award should be removed.

Swimming up the river

This ceremony begins with the Beavers in the river bank formation and the Cubs in the Pack circle. An opening is left in the Pack circle facing the Colony. Once in position, the Beaver Scout Leader calls out the names of those Beavers who are to join Cubs. The Beavers 'swimming up' join the leader in the river. The leader says "we are pleased and proud that you are now moving from Beaver Scouts to Cub Scouts," or "we wish you a happy and exciting time as you do your best in the Cub Scout Pack" or similar words suitable to the occasion. Escorted by the leader, the Beavers walk up the river between the banks to stand in a straight line facing the Cub Scout Leader and the Cub Scouts. If it is impractical to have the whole Pack present, then Sixers and Seconds only or a group of Cub Scouts could be involved. The Cub Scout Leader then uses the left handshake and welcomes them into the Pack. The Cub Scout Leader introduces the new Cubs to their Sixer whom they should already have met and then to other members of the Six. A simple prayer may conclude the ceremony.

Swimming across the river

The Colony and Pack form two horseshoes facing each other. The Sixers come forward and shake hands using the left handshake with the Beavers who are swimming across. The Beavers use the left handshake with the Beaver Scout Leaders and say ‘goodbye'. The Beaver Scouts and Sixers wade, swim or jump the river. Akela greets the new Cubs using the left handshake and introduces them to the Pack. There is then a grand howl of welcome by the Pack to greet the new Cubs who remain standing throughout the Cub Scout welcome.  A simple prayer may conclude the ceremony.

The Beavers who are swimming across will have attended several Pack meetings prior to the actual ceremony. This enables the Beavers to be introduced to the Cub Scout Pack and to attend both the Colony meetings and the Pack meetings until they are ready for investiture. Sometimes it is possible to present the Six woggle on the occasions outlined above to indicate belonging to a Six prior to the investiture.

Pull me across the river

The Beaver Scout Colony and Cub Scout Pack form two horseshoes facing each other with a rope across the river. The Beavers wave goodbye to the Colony, hold onto a rope and read from a card:

    As a Beaver Scout my work is done,
    So look out Cub Scouts here I come.
    Across the river now I swim,
    Held by a rope to pull me in.
    So help me Cub Scouts, help me do,
    Pull me across to be with you.

The Cub Scout Sixer greets the new Cubs and introduces the Seconder, the Six, and Akela. A grand howl of welcome by the Pack follows and a simple prayer may conclude the ceremony.

Swimming under the river

The Beaver Scout Colony and Cub Scout Pack form two horseshoes facing each other with a large blanket placed on the floor between them. Four young people hold down the corners of the blanket and the Beavers who are transferring ensure that their new Cub Scout sweatshirts are under the blanket. The Beavers say 'goodbye' to the Colony and one-by-one remove their scarves and woggles and swim into the river, under the blanket.

While under the river the Beavers remove their Beaver Scout sweatshirt and put on the new Cub Scout sweatshirt and scarf. The Beavers emerge from the river dressed in their Cub Scout sweatshirt and are greeted by a Cub Scout Sixer and Akela. A grand howl of welcome by the Pack follows and a simple prayer may conclude the ceremony.