St Johns Wood Scouts

IMPORTANT. Your attendance or apology for the Group Night and AGM, Friday 24 May is required.

I’ll ask the group committee to phone everyone that does not reply as it really is that important. Soon we’ll be approaching governments for grants to replace our main scout hall and we’ll be asking our local parliamentary representatives for their strong support for our application, and quite simply, their support will reflect the strength of your support as measured by attendance at our AGM. The alternative is hundreds more Bunnings sausage sizzles, pie drives, and chocolate drives which are a slow way to raise large funds. Details, including RSVP link, are in the flyer attached, and included below.

The AGM is a time to show support, and thanks, to the volunteer leaders and committee members that put so much effort into providing quality scouting at our local St Johns Wood Scout Group.

At our AGM night, there will be a BBQ, games and activities for families and the short meeting which will be run by our Rover Scouts. Scouts is a different to other organisations as the Group Leader appoints committee members, but there are votes to accept the financial affairs of the group. The attached flyer has details.

Thanks to out-going Group Leader Bronwen Davie, Jabiru

The Scouts thanks Bronwen Davie, “Jabiru”, our out-going Group Leader, who stepped down on 31 March after many years of tireless service to the group as Group Leader, and before that as Scout Leader and assistant Cub Leader. Bronwen has built a strong group that has good leaders, money in the bank and good youth numbers. We hope that she will continue to be a key part of our group, so please say thanks but not good-bye. Alan Brake, “Q” has been appointed as an interim Group Leader. My priority is to deliver the new scout building, which has been a dream for 30 years, under several different group leaders, but it is now make or break time as we have a development approval that lapses soon and we may never get another chance.

Our Strong Group Committee

We are lucky to welcome Wayne Window, “Hathi” as Assistant Group Leader (currently Cub Scout Leader), and in other changes, Tony Jago, “Dingo” is helping in Scouts as well as running Joeys by himself. You can see that we need more help from adults that are willing to volunteer as leaders in the Joey and Cub sections, and it is both enjoyable, and more fun if we have a few parents start together. We are all busy, but somehow some people make it work and all help helps. See any of the Leaders if interested. The group committee has also reformed with four parents volunteering this year, so welcome to Joanna Yesberg (Treasurer), Manoj Lukose, Steve Kennedy, Frank Csabo and dedicated long standing member Russ Davie. Other members would also be helpful and it is an expectation in Scout Groups that every family spends one year on the committee.

Out with the old, in with the new badge scheme

There are some exciting changes happening in Scouts currently, which is the most significant change since the current badge system was introduced in the 1970s. The new youth program provides a better framework for outdoor adventure skills badges and focusses the remainder of the badge system on our core leadership skills, as well as broadening the special interest badges we have currently. It is a very positive change. There are some associated changes such as simplifying some terminology (all sections are now “Units”, eg Cub Scout Unit) and we have a new logo.

Reducing Group Fees with Containers for Change

SJW Scouts will soon have a donation bin to accept donations of single use containers with the 10 cents refund. Please keep your own containers and encourage your neighbours/community/school to consider donating to SJW. This could be a very sizable fundraiser for Scouts if parents support it. Keeping Scouting affordable is important and other initiatives are our fund-raising, and successful grant applications. Please report any grants you hear about – we already know and use BCC and Qld government grants but better to get more leads than miss a useful grant.

A bit about our incoming leader, Alan Brake

Alan’s bio: Allow me to introduce myself. I am married to Jenny, a very supportive wife, and have four children, Emma (Occupational Therapist, Rover Scout), Jamie (studying Philosophy and Economics, Rover Treasurer), Becky (just finished grade 12, studying Teaching and Venturer Scout Chairman and Lexie, Kelvin Grove student and Venturer Unit Secretary). I am an electrical engineer who started as a technical specialist and migrated into multi-discipline engineering projects in the electricity sector. My scout life started counting “two bob” coins for my father, treasurer at the time, before starting Cubs, Scouts, Venturers and Rovers. In Rovers, I was a key person in building the current Rover Den and was also a Cub Scout Leader. Then to a Queensland branch role in the Rover section, before taking a break from leader roles and returning when my children were in Cubs as a full time parent helper, then Cub leader, Scout leader and now almost Group Leader. I restarted the Group building committee leading to the building of the fantastic new Q Store.

Alan's vision for the SJW Scouts

Badges are what makes Scouting scouts, rather than an interest group. Our founder, BP, cleverly designed the system to provide encouragement for youth to participate in many activities, and often in areas that broaden their experience and skills. Reflecting on my experience as a youth member, I only did well badge wise in Venturers because that leader had the expectation and drive to encourage me. That’s where leaders make a difference in delivering Scouting by harnessing the youth’s desire for recognition for a job well done to earn badges in new skill areas. The leaders in the group agree that our expectation is that youth at SJW earn badges. We’d like to have many ASMs, QS and BP awards and we already do well in Joey Scouts and Cub Scouts. Further, the Scout group should be a place where Leaders feel valued and their contribution is acknowledged. Parents should feel that they belong to our community, and they help with running the group. Youth should have interesting activities to participate in and be earning some badges. I’m keen to deliver that vision at St Johns Wood.

Procedural matters. This is the link to the last annual meeting reports.

Site created May 2019 by Alan Brake.

contact abrake. sjwscouts AT