Late April/May MX News

Date: 23rd Apr 2020 Author: Karen Tempest

Welcome to the late-April/May edition of MX News, the County Update for Greater London Middlesex West. 

In this MX News:
• A look at some of the amazing things Leaders and YP have achieved while Scouting at Home
• St George’s Day
• How we can continue to complete 20in20 under lockdown
• Dentistry to your Door
• Bucks Scout Radio
• Thanks for Supporting Certificates
• DofE With a Difference
• Hike to the Moon
• Activity Permit Renewals
• District and Group Executives
• Safety and Safeguarding
• Update from PACCAR

Scouting at Home
The lockdown doesn’t appear to have quashed your enthusiasm to continue Scouting and we have been blown away by the way that you have supported the young people of GLMW and each other. Each day we hear how you are thinking outside of the box and using a number of methods to deliver a varied Scouting programme and offer challenge and some fun to your sections.
Beavers from 4th Harrow have been having regular virtual meetings and have played Sleeping Lions, built shoe towers, gone on mini beast hunts and been learning sign language. Explorers in Uxbridge have made chocolate treats, played bingo and are mastering the use of a Kazoo to challenge their friends to a game of Name that Tune. Scouts in Edgware have made mini zip lines whilst others have been reaching out to some of the more vulnerable members of our community and sending letters and pictures. Many of you camped out (or in) over the Easter weekend for our Easter Eggstravaganza and we have enjoyed seeing photos of your makeshift campsites and dens.

16th Edgware put together their toilet roll challenge video which has inspired us to see if we can do a County version. If you would like to take part, please film a clip of you catching a toilet roll from your right and then throw it to the left out of shot. We’d encourage you to use your imagination when filming and don’t forget to wear your Scout uniform. Send your clips into Karen before 2nd May to be included in the video.

St George’s Day
Last week we launched our St. George’s Day Competition where we asked Beavers, Cubs, Scouts, Explorers and our adult members to make shields, swords, dragons and flags. The competition closes this Saturday with the winners being announced at midday on Sunday, 26th April when we go live on Facebook for our County Promise renewal.

We Can Achieve our 20in20 Challenges in Lockdown
Although the suspension of face-to-face Scouting has brought some additional challenges to us all, we have seen lots of examples of why this will not stop us completing and participating in our Scouting activities! The 20in20 Challenge is a really flexible award that enables many variations of each of the challenges. We have put together this Coronavirus Lockdown Version of 20in20 to help keep everyone in touch and participating in Scouting from home. We hope you continue to enjoy taking part for 20in20.

Bucks Scout Radio
Have you heard of Bucks Scout Radio? Another good source of programme ideas to keep everyone Scouting at Home. They are engaging with young people and leaders alike with their internet based radio station programmes produced by Scouts for Scouts. You can find them here. They have teams of presenters working with leaders and advisors to produce badge and programme content for all ages – including leaders.

Dentistry to your Door
Pinner & Headstone Scouts have partnered with Smile Again Dentistry to bring emergency dental service to the local community.
Following a free telephone consultation with a Dentist, Adult Scout Volunteers will safely deliver a free emergency dental kit together with any prescriptions or medications directly to your door.
Open Monday to Sunday between 9am and 5pm
Call: 07404 394 527
A service open to everyone regardless of whether you are a patient of Smile Again Dentistry or a member of The Scouts.

Thanks for Supporting Certificates
Many of you will be aware of the huge support that all our Scout members have been giving to key workers during this difficult time. There have been wonderful rainbow posters displayed in windows, and messages of support sent to friends and neighbours working in the NHS and healthcare sectors. We have all joined the Thursday 8pm clapping and cheering our thanks to everyone who is doing their bit to help keep us safe.
Several NHS hospitals have been sending certificates to thank young people for their support, and we thought it would be a good way for our Leaders to support our Young people. So we have produced a version for Leaders to award, based on this theme. We shouldn’t forget that many of our young people in Scouting also need support and encouragement to get through this tough time. Our GLMW certificate is based on the same rainbow theme and can be downloaded here for you to customise. It has been targeted initially for our Beaver and Cub sections but can be used for any section.

Keeping DofE Awards Going During the Lockdown
To help participants continue making progress with their DofE Awards, the organisation has launched DofE With a Difference. By taking a look at the website you can find everything you need to keep DofE running for young people – including home-based activities they can change to and start doing right now, with your approval as their DofE Unit Leader. The DofE organisation Will be adding to this regularly in coming weeks.
Don’t forget: participants have until they’re 25 to do their DofE – and can ask you for an extension if they’re 24. In this unusual period for us all, they can also condense their activity hours to do longer sessions per month, rather than hourly each week.
The website has lots of suggestions on a range or FAQs to help Leaders and Participants adapt plans and provide advice and support. Thank you for everything you’re doing to help young people continue their DofE.

Hike to the Moon
Tonight, BBC Children in Need and Comic Relief are getting together for their Big Day In on Radio and their Big Night In on TV, a massive fundraising special to celebrate the incredible people making a difference in communities across the UK and to support people who need it most during the corona crisis.
We want Scouts to go the extra mile too. Together, young people, volunteers, parents and carers are going to Hike to the Moon. If we all hike just one mile each – about 2,000 steps or 20 minutes walking on the spot – then together, we can complete the incredible 240,000 mile journey. To hit your one mile target, you can hike around your home or your garden (if you’ve got one) but please be safe and stick within government advice – you don’t need to leave your homes to be part of this.

Activity Permit Renewals
Does anyone have expired, or soon to expire activity permits?
If so, this would be a good time to get ready for a return to the great outdoors and submit a renewal application to the appropriate County adventurous activity assessor or, in the case of Nights Away your District Nights Away Advisor.
An activity permit application form (which is also used for renewals) and guidance can be found here.
Details for County Assessors can be found within the activities section of the GLMW web site.

District and Group Executive Chairs
I’m sure you will agree that these are testing times for us all and when it’s over things will never be the same.
However in the meantime, it’s incumbent on us all over the next few months to ensure that Scouting continues although in a different form. If you have the time and some will, there are a number of things that Executive members can do.
In the County our meetings continue, making good use of video and conference calling and if you can’t then learn the technology to do so. It’s really quite simple and there are a number of mediums you can use. Microsoft Teams, Zoom and Skype are just a few and there are others. Just make sure that whatever you use is secure.

Maybe now is a good time to consider catching up of mandatory executive training, GDPR, Module 1 for Executives, Safety and Safeguarding can all be completed on line. Visit the website for more information.
If you want any help feel free to contact Chad.
Finally start making plans about how you and your teams will engage when it’s all over and maybe think about something big to create attention and let everyone know that Scouting is still there. In the meantime, keep safe, be positive and look forward.

Safety and safeguarding
Whilst both courses can be covered online from the scouts website, we can offer a more interactive and engaging version of both courses. To find out more or to book a place please email Alison.

Update from PACCAR
As the Coronavirus brings the world to a standstill we thought we’d update you on what’s happening at Paccar.
We have our Gappers (International Volunteers) still living on site and carrying on with work around the site. In the week leading up to lockdown they were all offered help to get home but they all wanted to stay. They are living as one Household with three crew members who happened to be on site when the lockdown was declared and also elected to stay. Apart from food shopping they don’t leave site and nobody comes on site. They are all fit and well.
The site is a hive of activity as this amazing team of people go over every inch of Paccar preparing it for your return. When you come back it will be unrecognisable. They have taken “Deep Clean” to a new level, sites have been seeded, fences mended, nagging repairs carried out, buildings re-equipped you name it. There’s a lot of all year round maintenance needed on all the activities and around the site so we are taking the opportunity to get them done.
If you have a booking between now and July Rachel will have contacted you to discuss the options. She is busy rearranging dates etc. and as a result some popular dates are booking up fast. If you have a booking but she hasn’t managed to make contact yet, you may want to get in touch.
We are currently putting together “Activity Day” packages. These are primarily for schools who will have missed out on their residential trips but will be equally suitable for Scout Groups once face to face scouting resumes. As ever, we are totally flexible and will do whatever we can to make it work for you.
Beaverama 2 Animal Adventure & Cubs Go Critter Crazy
We have to face the reality that we won’t be able to host these events in June, so have moved them both to Sat 5th (Cubs) and Sun 6th (Beavers) June 2021. If you have already booked we’ll simply carry your booking forward unless we hear otherwise from you. If you haven’t booked feel free to book now. These events always fill to capacity, and we are sure there will be a bigger then normal appetite for events going forward.
ReBoot & Elements
These remain in the calendar as we continue to monitor the situation. Please continue to book, don’t worry about paying deposits right now, we’ll worry about that later, again these weekends sell out so please do book your spaces so you don’t miss out.
Blow Your Socks Off – August
We are also hoping to be able to put on this camp, its 9th – 16th August so a fair way ahead. Remember its fully programmed, instructor led activities every day so an easy alternative to a full on Summer Camp, could be a good opportunity to get everyone together over the summer
In these very uncertain times we are simply working towards the big return to Scouting making sure everything will be in place and as perfect as it can be. The amazing Paccar Crew are all itching to get back and missing the place like mad, and we’re all very jealous of the Gappers, spending their isolation period at such a great place…
If there’s anything you want to know or have any questions we are here, working from home with the phones diverted ready to help…please get in touch.
We can’t wait to see you at Paccar again very soon!

Put your phone down and what are you left with? Just teamwork, courage and the skills to succeed.’
Bear Grylls, Chief Scout Bear Grylls