Scouting around for volunteers
PUBLISHED: 16:16 21 April 2008 | UPDATED: 13:12 06 May 2010
SCOUTING in St Albans is growing faster than anywhere else in the country – but the movement needs adult volunteers to keep up the expansion. Last year the number of Scouts, Cubs and Beavers in the district increased 14 per cent but there are currently lo
SCOUTING in St Albans is growing faster than anywhere else in the country - but the movement needs adult volunteers to keep up the expansion.
Last year the number of Scouts, Cubs and Beavers in the district increased 14 per cent but there are currently long waiting lists for all 16 Scout groups - each of which is comprised of a Beaver colony, a Cub pack and a Scout troop.
The Scouts have more than enough floor space and leaders to accommodate those waiting to be recruited. But because of the pressures of modern life there is a shortfall in the number of volunteers.
District Commissioner of St Albans, Anne Barnes, said they were looking for as many volunteers as possible to help them fulfil their potential.
Working long and anti-social hours was part of the reason for the lack of volunteers, she explained. But those interested should not be put off applying because of their job as the Scouts tried to accommodate everyone based on what they could give.
She added: "We try to fit people in according to the hours they work and the skills they have. People with accounting skills often help out as treasurers and there is a nurse who works shifts and still helps out."
She pointed to the great diversity in the types of people they recruited -
they could range from dads who got involved because of their children to very young people.
She added: "A guy who had just left university recently became a leader because he enjoyed Scouting as a boy and a young lady joined because she wanted to put something back into the community and ended up making lots of friends with all the other leaders. But with more volunteers, we can give more to young people."
There are now 208 adult and 1,063 youth Scout members in the district.
Last year, two new Beaver colonies were formed in St Albans and Chiswell Green, and two new Scout groups in Markyate and St Albans. They are already full with waiting lists.