So many Joeys and so few places. More correctly, so many enquiries from families wanting their child to be in Joeys, and no places to offer.
What can be done about it?
There are 3 options, each with their own advantages and disadvantages.
- Find another scout group with vacancies
- Keep waiting
- Open a second Joey Mob at Kama.
In addition to Kama there are five scout groups in Belconnen and although demand for places is high everywhere, you may find a vacancy. If you are keen, it is worth asking. There are scout groups in Page, Belconnen Town Centre, Kaleen, Evatt and Charnwood. Contact details for each can be found on the Scouts ACT website.
Our waiting list for Joeys is long. It is quite likely that many children currently waitlisted will be too old for Joeys when a vacancy finally arises. In that case they need to join Cubs. At present, the Kama Cub Pack is full. There is no waiting list, so it is possible that a place will be available for your child when the time comes. Bear in mind, however, that we also have to ingest the current Joeys into the Cub Pack as they reach the age of 8 (and existing members are prioritised).
Next is the part where most people tune out. In that case, I refer you back to options (1) and (2).
The third option is to open a second Joey Mob and offer the wonderful world of scouting to another 15 or so happy youngsters (this is the entire waiting list in one go). To do this we need a minimum of two new Joey Leaders and it would be highly desirable to have two Adult Helpers as well. The obvious effect down the track is that our Cub Pack will need to be duplicated too. More leaders will be needed for that…. In short, scouting is very dependent on family commitment to make it happen. Always has been.
Why would anyone volunteer to be a Joey (or Cub) Leader?
- Pay it forward. It is highly likely that someone did this for you when you were a kid. You were probably a Brownie or a Guide or a Cub or a Scout or you played in a sports team (that had a coach and a manager) or you were part of an amateur drama group (that had a director) or a choir (that had a conductor and an accompanist), or something. Adults made that happen for you back then. You are the adult now…See where we are going with this…?
- Your kids will love it. Most kids want nothing more than they want to spend time doing stuff with their parents. They love having their Mum or Dad as a scout leader, and the overwhelming feedback from parents who become leaders is that they love hanging out with their kids in this way too.
- It’s real. It’s face-to-face. It’s not on a screen. All of us need to put the devices down and interact with each other more. Scouting does that for adults and for kids.
- It’s fun. Really. It’s fun. I could go on and on, but you know what fun is, right?
- Free, cheap and easy. Training and uniform for leaders is free. Kama fees for your kids are significantly cheaper for as long as you are a leader. It’s easy to become a fully trained leader. I’m not saying it’s instant, but it’s definitely not rocket science: you can do this. The new team would shadow our existing Leaders for the remainder of this year, learning the tricks of the trade from our experienced and friendly team, and launch a new Joey Mob in 2019.
If you are even half-way open to becoming a uniformed leader in scouting but uncertain of your outdoorsy aptitude, Joeys and Cubs are the easier sections to be in. Joeys is only one-hour per week, and Cubs 1.5 hours. They are the no running with scissors version of scouts – simplified and suitable for the capabilities of children aged 5-10. Plus, you receive training that equips you for the role, regardless of your skills and prior experience.
To find out more on a confidential, no-strings basis, contact the Kama Group Leader, Jackie Stenhouse. Email: email@example.com, or phone 0411 151 375.
Penguin and the Joeys at Kama Group Camp, March 2018. They made a boat from corflute and it floated, with passengers!