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Remembrance 2018

November 13, 2018 16:38 | Posted by |

Remembrance Day events have always been important to the Scout Association and I would encourage you to read about the contribution the Scouts made during both World Wars here. This year was extremely poignant being the Centenary of the end of WWI and it was pleasing to see the district out in force.

It was also fantastic to see groups organising  a number of engaging activities explaining the importance and symbolism behind remembrance to our young people as part of the programme. We were also probably the largest youth organisation participating in remembrance with groups attending services in Widnes, Runcorn, Halton Village, Moore, Frodsham, Helsby, Elton, Kingsley and Norley.

I was particularly impressed with 4th Widnes’ efforts and their spectacular installation they made on the side of their HQ which combined the recycling of waste plastics with a stunning tribute . Equally 1st Newton & Kingsley’s display of  artefacts on loan from the Imperial War Museum North which they used to engage with the rest of the community was also very impressive.

The young and old. Jack and Rachel from Aquila.

Mersey Weaver Exec Newsletter Autumn 2018

November 8, 2018 14:37 | Posted by |

The Executive Committee has recently given much thought as to how we can improve the ways in which we communicate with our members across the Mersey Weaver Scouting community. At the suggestion of one our leaders, we have decided to put together a newsletter with the key points from the minutes of the Executive meeting. We will make this available widely within the district to create a greater insight into what we discussed and how we operate. We hope you think this is a good idea and hope it will provide a greater transparency of how the Executive Committee makes decisions and undertakes its governance duties to ensure that resources are available to safely deliver the best possible quality Scouting.

On behalf of Mersey Weaver District Executive Committee please find attached a link to the first edition of the Mersey Weaver District Newsletter.

 

October Youth Forum

October 8, 2018 00:17 | Posted by |

At the beginning of October, Mersey Weaver held a Youth Forum camp at Clogwyn, Bangor. Over the weekend most Scout groups and Explorer units were represented. 

Throughout the weekend the youth forum had a mix of activities and youth forum meetings. The young people were split into two groups on the Saturday; one went on a local area hill walk in the morning and the other stayed at the centre and tackled a few topics for discussion and then swapped after lunch. 

There were several key topics discussed by the young people:

  • how would you spend £40,000 in the district,
  • what do you consider the barriers in the transition from Scouts to Explorers;
  • and how could you promote Mersey Weaver Scouting in your areas?

Below are some key points from the discussions.

How would you spend £40,000 in the district?

  • There was a lot of emphasis on spending the money at the district HQ
    • The YP suggested improvements could be made in the following areas: roof, kitchen, heating, bathrooms, a new sign on the building, storage fro groups with no storage, a climbing wall on the side of the building.
    • The benefits the YP predicted from these improvements were: a neutral space for the district, it would get used more frequently, ability to hire out the building to groups/non-scouters, we could hold more district events at the venue. 
  • QCW
    • Painting the buildings, new curtains, update the décor, improve/expand the archery range 
    • Benefits of doing this: more groups from the district would visit QCW, more archery events could be held at QCW

What do you consider the barriers in the transition from Scouts to Explorers? 

  • ‘It’s just new’- YP said it’s a new place, new leaders, new people which can all be very scary to some people. It was suggested that we could have a district newsletter to share what Explorers are doing/have done so Scouts aren’t as scared. 
  • Joint events- events for Scouts to visit their nearest Explorer group and see what is happening or district explorer events that Scouts can visit. 
  • Promote explorers via social media-can the YP have a social media take over when on events? 
  • Having a session that can be taken to Scout groups that Explorers can lead will give Scouts the opportunity to meet Explorers and their leaders and have a better understanding of what Explorers are. 
  • Having a buddy-system will help Scouts feel welcome and give them someone to talk to in their first few weeks. 
  • Having transition times at set periods throughout the year so Scouts can move up with their friends. 

How could you promote Mersey Weaver Scouting in your areas?

  • District clothing
  • Have events where we can show people that Scouting isn’t boring
  • Celebrate a certain day by wearing our uniform or casual Scout clothing to school
  • Talk about what we do more on social media

In addition to the youth forum discussions the young people were able to try out the new district land yachts. These were a great success and it was a good way to end the weekend!

Mersey Weaver Inter-Troop Shooting Competition 2018 Results

October 7, 2018 17:42 | Posted by |

The scores have been counted and checked for our first ever Mersey Weaver District Inter-Troop shooting competition.  Read on to find out the results.

Thirty seven scouts in ten teams from 7 different Troops from across the District participated in the competition which was organised and run by the Mersey Weaver Target Sports Scout Active Support Unit (TSASU). “As an ASU, we were pleased that we could put on this event for Scouts across the District and even more pleased with the very positive feedback from the Scouts who took part” said Paul Cummings, TSASU member who helped run the competition.  “We have a great pool of talent to move forward in selecting a team to represent Mersey Weaver at the Cheshire County Inter-District shooting competition to be held in November” commented Colin Chambers, District Shooting Advisor, who organised the competition. “Also by taking part, the Scouts achieved part of the requirement for their Master-at-Arms badge and for some it also counted towards their Personal Challenge badge on their way to achieve the Chief Scout Gold Award”.

Each Scout had to shoot two different types of air rifle twice at 5 bull targets from a distance of 6 yards. The highest 3 scores of each rifle type from each team were used to calculate the team’s score.

And the Team winners were:

4th Frodsham “Team A”. The runners-up were 1st Moore “Team A”:

Winners: 4th Frodsham “A”: Daniel, Erin and Kian with Assistant Scout Leader Chris.

Runner-up: 1st Moore A: Oliver, Lucas and Matthew with Scout Leader Andy.

Individual Winners

The Under 12 age group top scorer was Daniel from 4th Frodsham with a score of 80.  Runner-up was Toby (4th Frodsham) with a score of 76.

The 12 to 141/2 age range top scorer was Oliver from 1st Moore Scout Group with a score of 74. Runner-up was Ben (1st Newton & Kingsley) with a score of 72.

Under 12 age range 12 – 14/1/2 age range

Under 12 winner: Daniel (4th Frodsham) with Paul (TSASU) and Chris Assistant Scout Leader

Winner 12 to 14.5 year age range: Ben (1st Newton & Kingsley) with Colin (TSASU) and Endil (Scout Leader)

Team Leaderboard

Position Team Score
1 4th Frodsham A 211
2 1st Moore A 199
3 1st Newton & Kingsley A 189
4 41st Newton & Kinglsey B 187
5 4th Frodsham B 184
6 1st Moore B 183
7 3rd Frodsham Sea Scouts 155
8 1st Helsby 149
9 4th Widnes 131
10 4th Runcorn 112

Mersey Weaver Exec Newsletter Spring/Summer 2018

August 23, 2018 09:23 | Posted by |

The Executive Committee has recently given much thought as to how we can improve the ways in which we communicate with our members across the Mersey Weaver Scouting community. At the suggestion of one our leaders, we have decided to put together a newsletter with the key points from the minutes of the Executive meeting. We will make this available widely within the district to create a greater insight into what we discussed and how we operate. We hope you think this is a good idea and hope it will provide a greater transparency of how the Executive Committee makes decisions and undertakes its governance duties to ensure that resources are available to safely deliver the best possible quality Scouting.

On behalf of Mersey Weaver District Executive Committee please find attached a link to the first edition of the Mersey Weaver District Newsletter.

The Newsletter

 

DC Blog: Group Scout Leaders in Mersey Weaver

July 14, 2018 17:27 | Posted by |

In the last few weeks we have been extremely proud to welcome two new GSLs and an AGSL to the District Team!

Lisa Cubbin assumes the role of GSL at 1st Weston & Weston Point

Callum Linger assumes the role of GSL at 1st Ince & Elton

Linda McKay assumes the role of AGSL at 1st Ince & Elton

My personal gratitude goes to the all three of these volunteers for their willingness to accept the role of Group Scout Leader in Mersey Weaver and I am sure we shall see great things from you all!

So what is a Group Scout Leader?

The Group Scout Leader role is essential to ensuring every group in the District runs smoothly and every adult leader has a district representative local to them that they can go to for support.  They offer encouragement and deliver positive and constructive feedback to leaders. With the support of the executive committee they also ensure the group understands the policy, organisation and rules of the Scout Association so Scouting at the group can thrive! They are often instrumental in the growth of the group, recruiting new adults to the movement which in turn allows us to accept even more young people on our long waiting lists. All in all they are important role and with out them we’d be lost!

So where do we now stand in Mersey Weaver?

While it is definitely cause for celebration that we have found two new GSLs; of our 17 groups in the District, 5 still have a vacant Group Scout Leader. Only two of our groups have Assistant GSLs who we see as a just as vital role. In groups with out GSLs, a lot of this responsibility falls to Sections Leaders who already give up so much of their time planning fantastic programmes that provide our young people with skills for life. I’m in awe of them really, how they manage to do so much is beyond me and this why we need more adults willing to put themselves forward for the GSL and AGSL roles.

It is has been mine, Laura’s and Derek’s mission since we took our own roles four months ago that we put in place an infrastructure of support in the District so leaders feel valued and are properly equipped with the tools for the job. Part of this strategy has been to recruit people with good line management qualities or the potential to develop, to fill empty GSL posts and while it feels like a big step to have found two new adults to take on this role we obviously have more work to do!

In order to help us to do this Derek has formed a GSL search group made up of current Group Scout Leaders. Who better to help us identify the right people for the roles than the very people who do it week in, week out?! The purpose of the search group will be to work with groups to look internally for potential talent as well as reach out to the local community and businesses. The team will help us interview and run exercises with groups to find the best fit. Perhaps even identifying leaders in groups who’ve never considered a role like that before. They will also help with finding AGSLs so that going forward it all doesn’t come down to just one person and hopefully provide some succession when people inevitably move on.

Groups we a looking for a Group Scout Leader include
  • 1st Newton & Kingsley
  • 3rd & 9th Runcorn
  • 6th Runcorn
  • 8th Widnes
We are also on the look out for one or more Assistant Group Scout Leaders for all of our groups!
Update: Since this post we a pleased to have filled the GSL post at 4th Frodsham. We welcome Richard Smith to the role! And John Nicholson has taken an AGSL post at 1st Halton. We are excited about how both Richard and John will support our leaders in Frodsham and Runcorn.

Could you or someone you know be a Group Scout Leader too?

Are you new to Scouting or an existing leader? Maybe you are a parent just looking to help out in a way that doesn’t cramp your Scout’s style? Maybe you are looking to give something back to your community?  Perhaps you’re ready to try something new on your Scouting journey to keep things fresh!? We’re looking for lots of different leadership styles that may suit different groups so please reach out to us if you are interested in being part of a dynamic and innovative team of volunteer managers.
I was recently speaking to one of our Group Scout Leaders Emma, and I asked her what the best thing about being a GSL was and after a little think she replied,
“Helping to provide new opportunities and experiences for not only the young people but the adults too. It’s so rewarding seeing everybody young and old, grow, develop, learn new skills and form new friendships as a result of scouting.”
Who wouldn’t want to be a part of that?
There are a whole host of other reasons and benefits to a Group Scout Leader or Assistant Group Scout Leader Role which include:
  • Enabling more young people to enjoy and gain skills for life from Scouting.
  • Use existing or develop new management experience to give back to Scouting as well as help you develop in your career.
  • Meet dynamic individuals from a diverse range of backgrounds, make new friends and do things and projects that you’d never get the opportunity to do elsewhere.
  • Solve problems and become a figurehead in your community.
  • Gain satisfaction from being a part of someone else’s personal development. You become more than a volunteer, you become somebody’s mentor.
  • Adopt a new family that never stops extending and accept you for the real you!
  • When you don’t feel like you’re good enough, there are always lots of small people who look up to you who think you’re the best!
  • Empower leaders to do more with their sections. You could be the catalyst that takes a group who’s nights just revolving around playing indoor games to getting out and doing some truly amazing life changing things.
  • Innovate, pioneer change and leave a lasting legacy.
  • Join a dynamic group of volunteer managers who share a passion about the development of people.

Being a Group Scout Leader in Mersey Weaver comes with a package of support both locally and nationally.

If any of this resonates, you could be the next GSL we announce!
Thanks for listening!
Oli (District Commissioner)

District AGM

June 5, 2018 13:55 | Posted by |

The District AGM will be held on Monday 25th June from 7.00 pm, at the Heath Conference Centre in Runcorn

Below are links to the official documents for the 2018 District AGM

AGM Agenda

2017 Annual Trustees report

2017 Final signed accounts

2017 Independent Examiners report

Proposed update to District Constitution

limited copies for reference will be made available at the AGM but if you want your own copy please download from the links

Cheshire Hike 2018

April 30, 2018 09:33 | Posted by |

This weekend, Scouts from Mersey Weaver and other Districts in the County donned their backpacks and took part in “Cheshire Hike”. The event, now in its fifty second year is an annual competition open to all Scouts and Guides in Cheshire. The two day expedition is real challenge for all those who take part but with careful planning and good training, the Scouts that took part this weekend are living proof you can succeed! We are looking forward to hearing all the memorable stories from our young people and thank the leaders & parents that took the time to train them as well as the hike organisers and everyone that made the event possible.

Juniors 19km Saturday, 12km Sunday

Intermediate 25km (plus one optional 5km leg) Saturday, 16km Sunday

Senior 29km (plus two optional 5km legs), 19km Sunday

Senior Plus 34km (plus one option 5km leg), 19km Sunday

We would like to thank Richard, Carl, Mark and other members of the Hillwalking and Trekking ASU who put considerable effort in at a District Level helping to prepare teams for the event

Well done to all those from the District who took part!

District Youth Forum Contributes to 2018 You Shaped Month

February 25, 2018 15:21 | Posted by | No Comments

District Youth Commissioner, Hannah Deakin, “it’s a great demonstration of the District Team’s and Executive’s active commitment and support for You Shaped Scouting in the District to hold the Youth Forum as part of the 2018 National Your Shaped month”.  The Forum workshop day took place at the District Scout Centre on the 24th February.

Jeff Shaw, District Executive Chairman, welcomed the Scout Troop and Explorer Unit Representatives stating “The District Youth forum have an important voice in helping the District Executive to decide on the priorities  for investing in District Facilities and how they should be improved to meet the expectations of our current and future Youth Members”.

Colin Chambers, District Deputy Commissioner, stated “This relaunch of our Youth Forum in its new format and composition has produced a greater wider representation of Troops and Explorer Units across the District compared to the old format.  We had a great spread of ages participating, from Scouts as young as 11 through to Explorers just about to move onto to Network at 18 years old. We also had over 50% of the District represented and there was an awesome level of participation from our Scouts and explorers over the whole day, I feel the workshop was a great success not just on the level of representation but also the sheer number of ideas that were put forward by them.”

Units Present 0f Representation
Troops 7 16 44%
ESU 3 3 100%
Total 10 19 53%

Over the course of the day, all the Youth members took part in discussions sessions on:

  • What improvements and facilities they would like to see in the District Scout Centre that would benefit their their Groups and Units
  • What they liked about Queen Charlottes Wood Activity Centre and what might be nice to change, keep the same and any new activities.
  • Activities for the 2019 District Camp
  • How You Shaped Scouting can be further expanded in the District
  • Open ideas session in which they traded ides for milkshake ingredients which were then made by our own “Mocktail-ologists” for them.
  • Throughout the day, there was a”cool wall” on which they ranked a wide range of activities and events buy generic modafinil online from “Seriously Un-cool” to “Sub-Zero”.  This was then re-visted at the end of the day when everyone had the opportunity to put forward a case to move items up or down the range before everyone then voted on the final rankings.

Hannah was overwhelmed by the response ” its give me a great platform going forward, I have lots of youth members here today asking if I can come to their Troops and Units to run “You Shaped in a box” night and or supporting even greater You Shaped Scouting with their Troops and units”.

Richard Hamilton, leading organiser for 2019 District Camp, told us “I now have a wealth of tremendous ideas from today on what our Youth Members would like to see as activities at the District Camp, they clearly want new adventurous experiences which reflect the higher expectations of their age group these days.  There were also some of the more regular favourites.”

Oliver Chambers who takes over the District Commissioner role at the end of  March, took the opportunity to participate by running a workshop, encouraging participation throughout the day and getting hands-on in a number of the games. “I’m really excited by many of their ideas and comments from today. I’m  inspired by the depth and quality of the discussions which took place and just how much thought they put into their ideas.”

What’s next?

All the feedback from the forum is being collated and analysed after which the District Youth Commissioner will present it to the District Executive so that it can be taken into account in their decisions.
Hannah will be making contact with the Leaders of those Troops and Units whose representatives asked for her to attend and run “You Shaped night in a box”.
The next Youth Forum is planned for September/October 2018, the format will be a weekend event involving a night way so that those participating having the opportunity to socialise, get to know on another and also here about what is going on in the other Troops and Units in the District”

New District Commissioner for Mersey Weaver Announced

February 20, 2018 18:03 | Posted by | No Comments

Graham Phillips, Cheshire County Commissioner, announced today that the process to find the next DC for Mersey Weaver District has now been completed and  Oliver Chambers has been appointed to the role of DC Mersey Weaver District with effect from Mon 26 March when the current DC, Owen Campbell, will stand down.
Oliver is currently ADC Adventure in the District and the Scout Leader at 4th Frodsham Scout Group.  Graham stated “He brings a fresh approach to the role of DC combined buy modafinil now with enthusiasm and a passion for delivering Scouting to young people that is driven by young people themselves. He is keen to engage with Leaders and supporters across the District to find ways of working together to support young people in all sections of Scouting in the District”.
Graham also stated “I am grateful for the time and commitment Owen has put into Mersey Weaver and his cooperation in working on an effective handover of the District .”