The initial project started with a three-day workshop concluded in Manila, Philippines on 4-6 December 2006 aimed at orienting and training Scout Leaders, who are involved in the Ticket to Life Project. Looking at the past - in India 2007, the workshop was intended to share experiences and dealt on clarifying gray areas about the project. In Nepal 2008, the workshop was organized to determine the general impact of the project to the community. It was an opportunity to coach national coordinators in filling up report forms. The annual workshop for 2009 was held in January 2010. Besides evaluating and planning, the workshop in Bangladesh, identified measurable impact of selected Scouts (sample survey), under the APR Ticket to Life Project.
SIGNIFICANT AND POSITIVE CHANGES
The annual workshop in Sri Lanka 2010 was organized with emphasis to Scout Advancement. It was indicated in the in the previous workshop reports that 53 young people are still not invested as Scouts. This may be those Scouts who cannot cope with the requirements for Membership Badge. Since the children do not get the right nutrition from the streets, they are much challenged in memorizing and reciting the Scout Oath and Law, which is one of the basic requirements to be a Scout. This was the Troop Leader's hypothesis; Majority of these 53 young children have just joined at the middle of the programme.
In Bangladesh, there is a significant decrease in membership from 470 in 2009 to 320 in 2010. The re-structuring applied in Scout Troops that allowed only 32 children in one Scout Troop brings about this decrease. The general standard in Scouting is 32 children for every Scout Troop. Dropouts are a common feature in this project but still membership has been increasing in the rest of countries where Ticket to Life is present.
For a healthy Scout Programme to be realized, Scout Leaders should be able to facilitate the advancement of at least 10% of her/his Scouts to the next advancement stage/level. We believe that the adult leaders are doing a great job since the countries advancement percentage is way above the standard of 10%. Though there is a significant decrease in the number of children not invested to Scouting, this is a positive development since this means that more children have been invested to Scouting that year.
The number of Scouts per rank in one year also decreased as the rank moves from one stage/level to a higher one. This is brought about by the principle that when the higher the level is the difficult the task or requirements are. So far, five Scouts under TTL are completing the highest Scout level. One of the positive changes, which are very evident, is street children’s self-confidence has improved. These children are more participative in activities and spontaneously mingle with their peers.
Based on the reports of national coordinators, during the 2011 APR Ticket to Life Project Evaluation and Planning Workshop in the Philippines, a total number of 117 Scouts (59 are females and 58 are males), where the average age is 15 years old – being 10 years old as the youngest and 19 as the oldest.
The aim of this vocational training is to equip these Scouts with necessary skills that can start with an income-generating livelihood. While doing vocational training, Scout advancement is closely monitored.
The Annual APR Ticket To Life Evaluation And Planning Workshop for 2012 was organized from 17-20 December 2012 at Cibubur Scout Camp in Indonesia with empasis to the impact of Scouting in individuals.
INTERVIEWS AND TESTIMONIALS
One scout who treasures his experience is Jerwin, 17, who, from being a solvent (inhalation drug) user, is today a young man with lots of dreams and hopes and someone who always wants to do his good turn.
Jerwin joined the Ticket to Life Scout troop in Manila in 2008. He said that in his early Scouting years, he occasionally attended troop meetings, which were held on Saturdays. There was a point when, instead of attending meetings, he did silly things like stealing, ended up in jail, and was punished. Like many inmates of a jail do, he got a tattoo, thinking it was cool.
But inside his heart he was lonely and worried, each time he went to jail. He said, “I thought that if my own parents do not accept me, how much more can other people?” “But I was wrong. Every time I came out of jail and went back to the troop meetings, my Scout leaders do not have second thoughts while accepting me back.”
Jerwin went back to school briefly, but now he had to earn his living as a Pedicab driver. During the super typhoon ‘Ondoy’ that brought devastating floods in Metro Manila, he earned as much as 800 Pesos (US$18) by ferrying stranded people using his Pedicab. While doing this, the thought of doing a “good turn” made more sense to him than the money he earned. “So sometimes I ferried people for free. I am a Scout first, Jerwin second.”
In Bangladesh, Shujan Miya, 19 years old is a street child and now working as a Service Crew in one of the KFC Branches in Dhaka.
Reflecting on your experiences in your project, please share some examples of things that you now know should be done, should be avoided, or that you would do differently next time you undertake a project like this. This will help other Scouts run better projects too.
CHALLENGES AND DIFFICULTIES
Receiving the quarterly reports from the national coordinators is a perennial problem. However, because of longer bilateral coaching, the quality of reports has been improved.
The project management team had problems with national coordinator who are sending in quarterly reports without the support of pictures and images. This can be solved through Facebook. Three of the project sites have Facebook page that religious upload pictures every time they have activities especially the weekly Troop Meetings.
When the project proposal was sent, the target beneficiaries were 1,500 street children. This target was not reached. One of the major reasons was that the plan of having Cambodia Scouts to join the APR Ticket to Life Project did not happen. We have followed up several times encouraging them to organize a Ticket to Life Scout Troop in Cambodia but they said that since they are a very young NSO, their infrastructure would not be able to sustain the project.
Drop-outs was also a primary challenge. Some street children who enrolled in Scouting at the beginning of the year will just stop attending the Troop meetings. This is because their parents moved to another place. Others are not consistently attending the Troop meetings. They were in-and-out of the Troop meeting and finally would drop out.
The target was not met because funds, which have been sent to national Scouts organization, are often stuck at the national headquarters and not forwarded to the project site. This causes delay and operations are hampered. Most often reconciling all the accounts (amounts sent vs. amount received) is very difficult.