Cheshire Youth United
Halebank Cub Group – Case Study
February – May 2015
Cheshire Youth United was approached by Cheshire Scouts to support them in establishing a brand new Cub group in Halebank, near Widnes where there is currently no Scouting provision at all and little in the way of clubs and initiatives for young people to engage in.
• To establish that there remains enough interest to set up a Cub Pack.
• To develop relations with the venue committee members.
• To recruit enough adult volunteers to run the Cub Pack.
• To recruit young people into the Cub Pack.
A venue, the local community centre where the youth club operated from, had already been identified. Around 9 months previously, Cheshire Scouts, supported by Youth Federation held a Scout open day which attracted much of the local community. Through this open day it was established that there was enough interest and demand to support a new Cub group, however, further, focused work was needed to get the group set up and running.
• Cheshire Youth United and Scouts had a consultation meeting to fully understand the requirements of the project, the background and to agree on a strategy and time scale.
• Establishing a good, working relationship with the venue. Through connections with Youth Federation’s Sustain team, Cheshire Youth United set to establishing an effective relationship with the venue to ensure that the project was clearly explained, the impact and benefits of the project on the venue and the local community was understood as well as explaining the importance of the involvement from adults in the local community, all of which to ensure the sustainability of the new group. Cheshire Youth United arranged a sit down meeting between the venue and Scouts to ensure that all interested parties had full ‘buy-in’ to the project and the plan.
Strategy for setting up the new group.
• After reflecting on the open day that had been held previously, it was agreed that 4 taster sessions would be held on a Friday evening, the same time and day that it was proposed the Cub group would be held on once established. The idea was to give young people, parents and volunteers a sense of what it is really like to be in Cubs, to get into a routine and to give enough time for young people to decide if they like it or not and for word to spread. Whether or not Scouts would commit to opening the new group would be decided on the results of the taster session.
• The four taster sessions would be widely advertised through the local community, young people, volunteers and parents would be encouraged to come along and stay for the session.
Advertising the sessions
• Cheshire Scouts provided flyers and posters to advertise the taster sessions.
• CYU arranged to visit local schools to distribute flyers and deliver an assembly to pupils advertising the taster sessions.
• CYU hand delivered flyers to a local housing estate and amenities.
• CYU used connections through Youth Federation to spread the word via an email campaign and on social media.
• Through Youth Federation’s Sustain team connections, CYU announced the taster sessions on local community radio.
• CYU wrote a press release that was sent to the local press as well as places of worship.
The Taster Sessions
• Taster sessions were prepared, supported and run by local, experienced Scout leaders.
• CYU attended and supported the taster sessions to capture details of young people and potential volunteers as well as talk to all adults about the project and educate on what Scouts is all about and what to expect.
• The taster sessions saw an average of 12 young people turn up each week. 2 weekly volunteers and 2 part time volunteers were signed up.
• An additional volunteer, willing to give his time on a weekly basis later came forwards to support the group after seeing the article in the online version of the local paper.
Following the taster sessions
• It was decided that to keep up the momentum of the taster sessions, the group would continue its provision and be supported by a rota of local experienced leaders until the end of the summer term when after that, the group would be left to manage themselves with the support of a local Group Scout Leader.
• Cheshire Scouts organised for the new volunteers to visit local groups to start them off with their training.
• CYU negotiated the use of a cupboard so the group had on site storage as well as payment terms and produced an agreement for venue hire.