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Scouts Australia National News - December 2016

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Seasons Greetings to our Members

The festive season has arrived! Scouts Australia wishes our members an adventurous holiday break and looks forward to an exciting 2017.

Scouts Australia have produced a downloadable card for you to wish your Scouting members, families and wider community members your best wishes for a successful, peaceful and happy 2017. Simply fill out the template, and print or email the card to the valued members in your Scouting community.

Download the card here.


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NYC Applications Closing Soon

Still thinking about applying for the National Youth Council? Applications are closing within days on the 24th December! If you want to be involved with the decision making processes of Scouts Australia, consider completing the online application process.

We’re after Scouts, Venturers Scouts, Rover Scouts and young Leaders not aged over 23 years from every Branch of Scouts Australia to apply. For more information, and how to apply, head to the National Youth Council website.


Travel and Work in the USA with Scouts

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We’re looking for Rovers and Leaders who want to travel to the USA and work in a Scout Summer Camp! Join an international staff team instructing activities and mentoring Scouts from across the USA and make friendships for a life time.

Applications are now open for the International Camp Staff Program for mid-2017. Details can be found here on the Boy Scouts of America website, or contact Andrew Cooper, International Commissioner on


New Zealand Rover Moot Applications now Open

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Join the Australian Contingent to the New Zealand Moot over Easter 2017 for a Big Bang!

The New Zealand Moot runs from Thursday the 13th to Monday the 17th of April 2017 with an optional pre tour running from the 8th. The pre tour will visit Rotorua and Taupo.

Typical activities include:

  • Service project - take part in an amazing community project.
  • Tour/major activity day - spend the day off-site on one of a number of adventurous tours with which to challenge yourself; or take it easy and spend the day on a relaxing tour instead.
  • Costume parties - Each night there is a themed costume party with live bands, DJs or other entertainment.
  • Shooting Trophy - Spend the afternoon at different bases, completing interesting challenges and fun games, as you compete for the prestigious Shooting Trophy.
  • Sporting events - Compete in some sporting events including a cross-country and a tug-o war.

Further details on the tour/off site activities will be released soon!

Anyone over 18 and under 26 on the 8th of April 2017 is eligible to attend. Applications are now open! Head to find out more and to register.

You can also like us on Facebook or add us on snapchat - NZMoot.


Brand New Site for AJ2019

The Bend Motorsport Park at Tailem Bend, South Australia, has been announced as the venue for the 25th Australian Jamboree. It is only a short drive from Adelaide, with adventure packed activities each day in places including Adelaide city and the River Torrens, Port Adelaide, the Murraylands and Coorong.

The Jamboree is the biggest event in the Scouting calendar with 8,500 Scouts and 2,500 adult supporters expected to attend. The $100m facility, currently under development, will host activities and experiences that encourage Scouts to learn, work and grow together as they build a tented city, prepare and cook their own meals and participate in fun activities.

Scouts from Australia (and the rest of the world) are encouraged to start planning their journey to South Australia in 2019. To find out more information, like the AJ2019 Facebook Page. Applications to attend the National Scout Jamboree will open in July 2017.

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Australian Scout Recognised for Helping to Create a Better World

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The Messengers of Peace Hero Award has recently been presented to Scouts and teams who are working in their communities creating a better world. Among the 24 recipients was Australian Scout Peter Blatch, who was recognised for his instrumental role in ensuring the development and evolution of the evaluation system, criteria for funded projects and current guidelines for NSOs on the use of the fund. In addition to his ongoing work with the National Youth Program Team, Peter has conducted several Messengers of Peace training courses in the Asia-Pacific Region and around the world, promoting the Initiative’s aims and goals.

The Awards were presented at a significant ceremony in the distinguished presence of His Majesty King Carl XVI Gustaf of Sweden Honorary Chairman of the World Scout Foundation, high authorities of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, and members of the World Scout Foundation (WSF). A total of 24 Scouts and Scout groups from 23 countries from the six regions of the World Organization of the Scout Movement (WOSM) were recognised as Messengers of Peace Heroes. To read about the other inspiring Messengers of Peace Heroes, head to

Throughout the world, Scouts work towards creating positive change and establishing peace in their communities in many different ways – from assisting in relief operations after devastating natural disasters in Haiti and Ecuador; helping displaced communities in conflict areas such as Syria and Lebanon; preventing bullying in schools in Costa Rica; encouraging interactions, integrating communities and working with refugees in Europe; to leading social mobilisation initiatives in Ebola-stricken Sierra Leone – and the recipients of the Award have significantly contributed to raising the profile of Scouting in these areas. To read how you can incorporate Messengers of Peace in the Australian Scouting program, head to Scout Central.


Distinguished Recognition to Scouts Australia National President

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Congratulations to Major General Professor John Pearn AO RFD - Our National President of the Scout Association of Australia who was presented the Royal Life Saving Society’s King Edward VII Cup by the Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth at Buckingham Palace on the 22nd of November.

Professor Pearn earned his Bronze Medallion of the Royal Life Saving Society and has played an active role continuously in Scouting since he joined the Auchenflower Scout Group in Brisbane in 1951. He was a First Class Scout (an earlier version of the Australian Scout Medallion) and received the Scout Cord. The presentation of the King Edward VII Cup occurs every two to five years and is awarded to men and women of the Commonwealth who have made an outstanding contribution to rescue, resuscitation, lifesaving, injury prevention and safety promotion. Thanks to the work of Professor Pearn over 40 years from the 1970s, pool fencing is now legislated for in Australia saving hundreds of young lives each year. More regarding the Cup can be read here.

In conversation with Her Majesty at the presentation, Professor Pearn mentioned the outreach of Scouting in Australia. The Royal Lifesaving Bronze Medallion or higher is recognised in the Scout Award Scheme for Scouts, Venturer Scouts and Rover Scouts.


Fulfilling a promise to go fishing

Scouts Australia recently featured a NSW Scout Leader who won’t let his physical challenges get in the way of delivering a promise to his Scouts.

See more stories from Scouts Australia by liking our Facebook page!


Scouts Australia’s National Child Protection Policy - One Approach for All Australian Scout Members

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Scouts Australia has merged all Branch-based child protection policies into a single National policy to ensure consistency and clarity of our zero-tolerance approach to child protection.

This new National policy describes several areas of child protection including strategies for prevention; dealing with reports of abuse; training of all Scouting adults with regards to child protection; and the ongoing education of both adults and youth members. From all the different State and Territory legal requirements, Scouts Australia has selected the highest standard to apply in our new comprehensive National policy.

All State and Territory Branches agreed on four key child protection principles:

  • All adults in Scouting must report incidents to the appropriate authority
  • Any report will be responded to quickly and positively
  • There will be no delay, and strict steps must be followed
  • Investigations are not conducted locally - there is an escalated process

The independent, not-for-profit child protection organisation Child Wise has accredited the policy and has closely assisted Scouts Australia through its development. Child Wise will continue to work with Scouts Australia to ensure the policy and its underlying Scout Branch frameworks remain at best practice levels across Australia.

The new policy was approved by the National Executive Committee (NEC) of Scouts Australia in November 2016. During the next few months all training materials and handbooks across every Branch and Group will be updated. All Leaders, parents, volunteers and participants in Scouting must follow the new National policy.

To ensure that every Scouting member plays their part in providing the safest possible environment for all children, please read the summary page here and download a copy of the full policy here.


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Celebrating Cub100 Australia Zoo Competition

Belinda Robins and family joined members of their local Scouting community in the Upper Hunter District of NSW recently to celebrate winning the Cub100 Australia Zoo Competition.

At their end of year gathering and celebration, the District Commissioner Greta Wellham congratulated the winning family with youth members helping to present the cheque. Those at the celebration enjoyed a night of networking, some laser tag and barbeque.


Youth Program Review New Program Concept Workshops

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  • What do we need to do to grow Scouting?
  • What does the community want from Scouting?
  • What should Scouting look like in the 2020s and beyond?
  • How can we ensure the Scouting program is fun, adventurous, challenging and inclusive?
  • How can we be better at meeting the Purpose of Scouting?

It's time for you, as a member of Scouts Australia, to have your say on the New Program Concepts, created as part of the Youth Program Review (YPR). The concepts present a vision for how Scouting might look and feel in the future, and the YPR Coordinating Team really want and need to hear YOUR feedback on it!

The consultation process is an invitation to all Scouting and community members to attend a local workshop to hear the concepts and interact with others to discuss opinions, and to submit your thoughts.

Read more detail on the consultation process and find a workshop to attend on the YPR website.


Undertaking Work Experience?

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Are you in school and looking to gain work experience? The Scouts Australia National Support Team, based in Chatswood, Sydney regularly gives students in their senior years of high school the opportunity to gain valuable experience working in an office environment.

Recently, Callum (pictured), from a local school and a Venturer Scout, joined the team to learn about the types of skills that are required to support Scouting. At the same time, he made a valuable contribution by getting some much needed work completed. The learning opportunities that students on work experience gain contributes to their self development and gives an insight into future career paths.

If you would like more information on gaining work experience with Scouts Australia, please contact


World Scouting Now Led by Gen Y Secretary General

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Scouts Australia is pleased to announce the appointment of Ahmad Alhendawi as the next Secretary General of the World Organization of the Scout Movement (WOSM), the youngest in the history of the organisation.

"I am honoured and humbled to be offered the opportunity to serve as the Secretary General of this unique organisation representing the largest educational youth movement in the world,” said Mr Alhendawi upon accepting the offer.

A passionate advocate for young people, Mr Alhendawi has served in various capacities in regional and international organisations, rising through the ranks to the position of United Nations Envoy on Youth in 2013. Mr Alhendawi believes in giving a voice to young people and recognises the importance of youth empowerment and involvement in global and local issues.

Mr Alhendawi, born in Jordan in 1984, holds a Master’s degree in Advanced European and International Relations, a diploma as “Policy Officer in European and International Organisations” from the Institut Européen in Nice, and a Bachelor’s degree in computer information systems from the Al-Balqa Applied University in Jordan. Perhaps most importantly, he was once a Scout himself.

Mr Alhendawi is a strong supporter of WOSM and is a familiar face at international Scouting events. He visited the 23rd World Scout Jamboree in Japan last year and most recently the Roverway in France.

Mr Alhendawi continued, “I am confident Scouting holds a solution for youth development in the 21st century. I look forward to working with WOSM's team to expand the Movement and deepen its social impact, while continuing to create a better future for children and young people.”

Following the announcement of Mr Alhendawi’s appointment, the Chief Commissioner of Scouts Australia, Mr Chris Bates, commented “Like Mr Alhendawi, I have no doubt Scouting can make a significant difference for our young people. After all, they are tomorrow’s leaders. Mr Alhendawi is the best person to guide our Movement, and reach out to everyone and help us all grow.”

Mr Alhendawi succeeds Scott Teare, who retired last month. He is expected to begin his first day in office at the World Scout Bureau, Global Support Centre in Kuala Lumpur, on 1 March 2017. As the Secretary General of WOSM, Mr Alhendawi will be entrusted with the mandate of promoting and safeguarding the interests of the Scout Movement. As its Chief Executive Officer, he will also direct its Secretariat, the World Scout Bureau.


The Moot Open Day

Did you attend a Moot as a Rover Scout and want to re-live the awesome experience? Have you never had the opportunity to attend a national or international Rover event? Here is your opportunity to find out just how awesome national Rover events are!

The 20th National Rover Moot - The Moot is being held in Victoria this summer. If you would like to join in the fun for a day you can register to attend our Open Day. The day will be full of great activities and fun to be had for people of all ages.

Date: Friday, 6th January 2017. 11am - 4pm
Location: Mafeking Rover Park, Caveat-Dropmore Road, Caveat, Victoria
Cost: $10 per person. Children under 6 are free.
More information: Check out The Moot website.


10 facts that prove helping others is a key to achieving happiness

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Giving valuable time as a volunteer in Scouting proves that giving help to others leads to increased levels of happiness. As we head into the holiday break, reflect on this article from the Huffington Post which shows why helping others has positive effects in our lives.

  1. Helping others will actually make you feel great
  2. Giving can give you a self-esteem boost
  3. You'll have stronger friendships
  4. You become a glass half-full type person
  5. Helping others will make you feel like you can take on the world
  6. You'll feel a sense of belonging
  7. Giving will help you find your inner peace
  8. It will make you feel thankful
  9. It gives you a sense of renewal
  10. Helping others will spur others to pay it forward and keep the cycle of happiness going

Updates to Badges Placements!

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Our high achieving youth members have a lot of badges to fit on their uniform.

In response to feedback from youth members and adult leaders, the National Operations Committee have adjusted the badge placements for some badges worn on the Scout Uniform.

On the Joey Scout Uniform, members will now wear the Participation Badges and the Promise Challenge on the left sleeve. This move is to ensure the badges fit better on the uniform.

Following a request from a Rover Scout and young leader who uses AUSLAN to communicate, the “I Can Sign” badge is also being repositioned to be worn on the front of the shirt. The I CAN SIGN badge should be placed on the left hand side of the Second, Sixer, Assistant Patrol Leader, Patrol Leader or Crew Leader badge if the youth member is entitled to wear this as well. Adult members who wear a Leader Name Bar should place the I CAN SIGN badge to the left hand side of this bar.

Resources are being updated to reflect this change and will be available as documents are reissued/printed.

To view the new placement of the I Can Sign badge illustrated on the uniform, click here.

To view the relocation of the Joey Scout Participation and Promise Challenge badges, click here.