1st Beaver Valley is situated in the small town of Fruitvale, B.C. nestled between several mountain ranges. The 1st Beaver Valley Group is a blend of the three communities (Fruitvale, Montrose and Trail) close to their Scout Camp – Camp Tweedsmuir. Their Group Commissioner, Erin Robson, tells us in this article how their Group takes pride in following the Scouting Mission and Vision statements and have been able to grow on the Canadian Path in the past year.
Our Group has been involved in several great community projects the last few years, such as rebuilding local school gardens, singing Christmas carols and making small gifts for seniors, refinishing benches at senior homes and helping out at the local fairs. We also have attended large camps such as Nite Trek, the Pacific Jamboree and the Canadian Jamboree, and hosted events such as Beaverees and Kub Kar rallies. The youth in the community really enjoy coming back every year! Several youth from each Section of the Group also achieve their Top Section Awards each year. The Group has also done a great job at bringing in new youth (both male and female), along with new Scouters that equally enjoy the program.
We try our best to make our program as youth-led as possible. We have a Group Youth Commissioner who helps facilitate the relationship between the youth and Scouters, sharing ideas and lending a hand with the younger Section. As such, the Scouts handle most of the planning for camps, activities and meetings—with some guidance from their Scouters, of course.
Cubs tend to need a little more help. We start the beginning of the year with a bit of planning, and then get the Cubs to help out more and more throughout the year.
Beavers obviously aren’t as capable of managing the planning for their adventures, but their Scouters are sure to invite their ideas for the upcoming year. The Colony then plans out the year. The Beavers get a good sense of when we have camps and sleepovers, and they help with picking themes, creating kit lists and figuring out their menus.
Once a Beaver event is over, we share a review. We ask what we could have done differently, and find out what everyone enjoyed and what they think they missed. By sharing our reviews while still at our events, the youth are able to share thoughts and feelings that are still fresh. Important thoughts and ideas are less likely to be forgotten.
We are a small community with limited fundraising opportunities, but we’re actually rather successful. Our first fundraiser of the year is Scout Popcorn. We find it does well in our area, as no other organizations do anything like it. We are also supported by businesses in the area, who provide donations for camps and activities.
It is important to our Group that we recognize our local Scouters for their time and energy. We often hit the “Thanks” button for one another, especially when anyone does something special. We also encourage all of our families to take the time do it. Whenever a Scouter moves to a new Section, we give them a gift to celebrate. Our experienced Scouters are always mentoring newer Scouters, and. we take turns pursuing development opportunities near our Group. We bring in new Scouters by engaging parents; we invite them along on activities and show them how much fun their child is having in the program.
Social media is important to our Group. We constantly share our fun adventures on Facebook and Instagram, letting the world see how much fun we’re having. We promote ourselves, and we constantly recruit. It’s no wonder we’re often welcoming new members!
The 1st Beaver Valley Scout Group is a great example of how supporting a great Canadian Path program, being active in the community and using social media to show all the greta things tha tje Group’s is doing really can make a different to