No Room at the Inn
So after quite a bit of arms in the air ranting of late I thought I'd return to what this blog was originally intended for, the trials and tribulations of being a cub leader (or the state of never having got beyond the age of 12 as my Mum would have you believe).
So the new term is rapidly approaching, we have two camps next term, we have a small army of new kids moving up from beavers and we are trying some weird and wonderful new stuff including having a crack at Tai Chi! So after a few weeks of recovering I'm really looking forward to a brand new term.
There's a fly in the ointment though, and that is we are full, in fact more than that we are totally over crowded. And not as in we can't take anyone for a few weeks but as in we wont even take kids onto the waiting list, we will only take those coming up from beavers and that's not going to change for a couple of years as things stand. And we are not the only ones, other nearby groups are in the same positions, bulging at the seams and no sign of a change.
Now of course in many ways this is a good thing, if we are fighting the kids off with a stick then clearly we are doing something right, kids only come if they enjoy it.
What I don't like though is the huge number I have had to turn away. There was one today, there were two last week, more before that, all told I've turned at least 20 kids away this year so far. It's a constant stream.
This could be different though, if we (and I mean the scout association over all) had the adults to run things we could set up new groups and take these kids, we could do so much. And I believe in what we do, it's about the only thing I agree with in terms of the right wing press, ie that getting out there and doing something adventurous outdoors that might involve getting cold wet and muddy does kids the world of good, and what's more they love it! (By the way I totally disagree with the right wing press on their attitude to some of the fluffier sides of scouting but I guess we can't have everything).
So why don't people volunteer? Not just for us but for anything? It's something I can't get my head around. Why do people sit their and scratch their nuts in front of the tv when they could be out their doing something different? Yes it can be hard work but it's also a hell of a lot of fun as well. I know that I have made most of best friends through volunteering
So I'll be heading back in a couple of weeks with mixed feelings.