Youth Involvement in Scouts Australia
Scouts Australia has incorporated Youth Involvement in decision-making structurally in Scouting with a number of different structures and events to ensure that young people have their say at all levels in the association.
The Youth Council – offers opportunities for 24 young people aged 13-25 to have their say in decision making in Scouts Australia. Young people apply and following a selection process are appointed for a three year period. One third of the members changing each year and the chairman is appointed for a two year period. The Youth Council meets twice a year and there are monthly meetings of the Patrols using electronic communications. The Chairman of the Youth Council is a full member of the National Executive Committee and the Youth Council can make recommendations to this committee.
The National Rover Council – comprises two delegates from each of the 8 Branches with the Rover Advisor or Commissioner at Branch level. The Council is chaired by a Rover Scout, supported by a Vice-Chairman and a Training Officer, both of whom must be active Rover Scouts and members of the Council. This Group meets annually with the Executive Committee meeting more regularly and regular working group meetings to take work forward.
Opportunities at national events – National events are held annually in Scouts Australia, rotating between a National Jamboree and a National Rover Scout Moot. Opportunities are taken to obtain feedback from participants through ‘yakkeries’ and ‘Fora’. Yakkeries are informal, activity based opportunities to gather the views of young people on certain topics and fora are more structured opportunities to hear the views of young people.
This commitment to hear the views of young people and respond has resulted in a growth in Scouts Australia of around 2-3% in recent years. Resources supporting Rover Scouting are available on the Scouts Australia web-site http:www.scouts.com.au (search for Youth Voice).