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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

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Promoting good mental health

Learn how to have open conversations about mental health

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Being open and gently encouraging conversation in Scouts helps mental health to become an everyday topic that children and young people are comfortable talking about.

Talking about mental health

There’s an easy model adults working with young people can use to approach mental wellbeing called CARE. It stands for Curious, Approachable, Refer and Empathy.

  • Curious. Curiosity is non-threatening and opens up conversations, as you show an interest in hearing a child or young person’s perspective. You may notice a sudden change in their behaviour, attitude or mood - remember, no change is too small. Be curious about this and ask them if they want to talk. You don’t need to be a mental health expert to listen and you don’t need to know all the answers.
  • Approachable. Create a safe space for them to open up. This should be somewhere they feel comfortable and you're unlikely to be distracted. Remember to remain within the guidelines and boundaries of the Yellow Card.
  • Refer. You may not have all the answers, so be honest about not knowing and agree how you'll follow up. Encourage the young person to speak to the people they live with, or to a GP, about how they're feeling. If you’re concerned about a child or young person’s welfare, report it to the UK HQ Safeguarding Team. Where possible, it’s best to inform the young person that you’re going to do this.
  • Empathy. Be non-judgemental and let them know you're there for them. Try not to offer solutions right away and ask what they think could help.

Scouts boosts good mental health

According to research, children and young people who take part in Scouts have a lower risk of mental illness in later life. Scouts can play an important role in supporting wellbeing, through activities and badges, friendship, getting outdoors, and talking about and developing understanding around mental health.

Mental wellbeing activities

Take part in one of our many activities to help boost good mental health.

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5 ways to wellbeing

Mind has 5 steps you can do every single day to improve your mental health.

Try 5 ways to wellbeing >
How to improve your mental wellbeing

Get advice on how to look after your mental wellbeing, like how to reduce stress and how to connect with others.

Check out Mind's wellbeing tips >