The Scouts of the World program is a program created by the World Organization of the Scout Movement and is geared towards youth aged 14-26 (Venturer Scouts and Rover Scouts here in Canada). The purpose of the program is engage members of Scouts Canada in the fields of the Environment, Development and Peace, using the Millennium Development Goals of the United Nations as a framework to generate positive change in our communities and internationally.
Here’s how it works:
STEP 1: Discovery
A Scouts of the World (SOTW) Discovery is a formalized training event. It’s a hands-on learning experience that will bring members of Scouts Canada directly in contact with organizations that are working towards the theme of the Discovery. The objective is to come away with not only an intricate understanding of the causes and effects of the topic chosen, but to actually develop an action plan for the Voluntary Service portion of the SOTW Award.
The program focuses on three fields. The same goes for the Discoveries. Each SOTW Discovery will look at one of the general themes of the Environment, Development, and Peace. These can be more specifically addressed through one of the eight Millennium Development Goals of the United Nations: eradicating extreme poverty and hunger, achieving universal education, creating gender equality, improving maternal health, decreasing infant mortality, eliminating HIV/AIDS, environmental sustainability, and creating a global partnership for development. Finally, a SOTW Discovery will give Scouts Canada members the training necessary to organize and conduct a Voluntary Service Project in STEP 2 (such as budgeting, conflict resolution, goal setting, etc.)
Because these Discoveries are formalized, you can’t simply go and learn it all off the internet. Get in touch with your local Scouts of the World Ambassador, or contact email@example.com to find out when there’s a Discovery taking place near you. If there isn’t one coming up, we’ll get you started with all the materials and know-how to get one going!
STEP 2: Voluntary Service
The Voluntary Service Project is the part of the program where you get to put all that you’ve learned into action. At the end of your Discovery, you’ll have the chance to create an Action Plan. You might decide to conduct an awareness campaign in your community, or take on a community development project within your city. You might even be interested in completing an international development project in another country. Really, the possibilities are bounded only by your imagination. This is your chance to Create a Better World, so get out there and be creative!
You will likely work in a larger group to complete a 14-day Voluntary Service Project, but remember, your Action Plan is your individual goal for the project. Each person in your group could potentially have their own individual Action Plan for the project. This will bring diversity of ideas to the planning stages, but you’ll be surprised how closely linked all your Action Plans will be. In the end, a participant cannot simply be a passive member of a project and still receive the SOTW Award. The Award is about the personal development of capable youth at an age where they should be able to formulate and reach their own goals. This is a fundamental principle and will be assessed during the evaluation phase.
STEP 3: Reporting and Recognition
The final step in completing the SOTW Award is to report on what you did. Individually, you’ll outline your Discovery and Voluntary Service. What was the topic you chose to address? Why did you choose it? What did you learn? What was the purpose of your Voluntary Service? How did you do it? What was the end result? Obviously there’s a lot you’ll need to talk about in this report, so don’t take it lightly. When it comes to the evaluation of your efforts, this will likely be the only time the evaluators will really get to see anything about all your hard work. Be creative, be influential, but most of all, be complete in your report. We’re here for you every step of the way with pointers and information about requirements, so keep in touch with your Scouts of the World Ambassador.
Once you’ve successfully reported on your Discovery and Voluntary Service project, and submitted your completed Passport, we’re ready to recognize you with a cloth badge you can wear on your uniform, and a certificate signed by the Chief Commissioner of Scouts Canada. You’ll then be able to join the Scouts of the World Network, which will help guide others through the program and provide more opportunities to you.