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Cambridgeskip last won the day on May 3

Cambridgeskip had the most liked content!

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About Cambridgeskip

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    Junior Member

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    Cambridge UK
  • Occupation
    Aspiring novelist
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    Anything outdoors. Football (the one played with a ball, and your foot!) reading just about anything.
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    UK scouter who mostly lurks on this forum and occasionally pops up with some ramblings.

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  1. Cambridgeskip

    Mike Rowe: Death of Boy Scouts?

    The "offensive weapons" part is a legal term. That is what that policy is getting at. It's not saying the scout association says it, it means the law says it. Like it or not the law defines knives as such and as an organisation we have to work within the law. So unless the knife falls within certain parameters (3 inches or less in length, folds away and does not lock) the law says you need to have a reason for having it about your person. My point is that the scout policy makes sense when seen in the context of working within that. It doesn't meant you can't have and use one. I'll be hiking in a remote part of scotland next month. I will certainly have it about me then. I will probably walk to the local shop tomorrow. I won't have it with me then. Why would I? The policy (and it is guidance by the way, not a set rule) does not prevent scouts using knives, they certainly do, but part of it is not just training them in how to use them in their hand but also to get into habits that mean they don't get arrested. We had a survival skills camp back in March. They had them in their pockets then because the nature of the program meant they were using them a lot. We had a camp earlier this month as part of the national archery tournament. The scouts took knives but left them in their tents for the most part. As I say, it's partly about training them not to fall foul of the law.
  2. Cambridgeskip

    Mike Rowe: Death of Boy Scouts?

    Not among the scout fratternity because the laws that govern this didn't just come out the blue. There had been increasing restrictions on the use and ownership of knives over many years so it was a bit of a salami slice effect. Besides for the most part it's common sense. In the same way I don't carry my torch or my first aid kit or mess tins around with me all the time I don't have my knife about me all the time on camp and neither would I expect the scouts to. It's a case of you get it when you need it. The Daily Mail though.... when it found this out when into an editorial hissy fit. But as Ian mentioned, that's what the Daily Mail does. Think Fox News on steroids.
  3. Cambridgeskip

    Breaking Point

    It's all about balance I think. When it stops being fun, or becomes too stressful, or life away from scouting is suffering then it is time to take a step back. Whether than means standing down altogether or just dropping some of what you are doing. I went through a phase where I took on too much. It didn't do me any good at all. I made a conscious effort to step back and delegate. In other circumstances I may have stood down altogether. For the OP I'd say take a step back, pause for breath and be ready to say no to things. And take it from there. With regard to age I think a spread of ages works best. I have a 19 year old ASL who the kids look up to as a young role model. She is a teenager just like them and knows exactly what is going on in their lives because its happening to her as well.. I also have 74 year old ASL who the kids look up to as an older role model. He has children and grand children and knows whats going on in the scouts lives because he's seen it three times over! He also loves The Big Bang Theory and most scout nights start with him comparing notes with kids who are fans on the latest episode. Both bring different things to the troop. The 19 year old can swing her rucksack onto her back one handed and run like the wind. My 74 year old is physically slowing down but has a 65 year back catalogue of experience, wisdom and fantasically funny stories to tell. There's a place for everyone in this game.
  4. Cambridgeskip

    Scouts UK unveils new branding

    My group has done most of its rebranding (website, facebook, twitter) but haven't done our youtube channel yet. I like how it looks on the website, I think it makes it look cleaner and more straight forward. I'm not quite convinced though on facebook or twitter as the new "12th" logo on the profile photo doesn't quite say who we are. Youtube still has the old branding and by comparing the two I think you can see that for profile photos on social media the old one is definitely better. Unless we can do some more tinkering.!
  5. Cambridgeskip

    National, Religion, Membership, Oath and Law

    I'll play devils advocate here.... bear in mind I am completely pro LGBT inclusion.... However..... while I would agree with you that its was enforcing certain denomination's beliefs at the end of that policy you don't have to go back very many years to a time where, while it was perfectly legal to be gay, it was still looked upon by the majoirty of the population, regarldless of their religous faith or lack their of, as still imoral. At that time, say go back to the 1970s, BSA was simply enforcing what was a widely held moral belief, ie that being gay was imoral, because at that time that is what most people thought. I look back on my teenage years, the early to mid 90s, and the idea that anyone could have come out as openly gay and not been subjected to a torent of abuse and all kinds of difficulty is ludicrous. It just wouldn't have happened. Speak to any 14 or 15 year old now and they all have friends who are openly gay or bi. Most schools have LGBT societies. I have an 18 year old Assistant Scout Leader who is openly bi. Our district commissioner is openly gay. None of that would have been possible 25 years ago. Now they are. Things have moved on in a massive way. Things changed from the mid 90s onwards this side of the pond, from what I understand they did likewise your side as well. At some point in that time I'd argue that BSA went from using establish morals as part of their code to those of certain denominations.
  6. Cambridgeskip

    National, Religion, Membership, Oath and Law

    It's often not even as straight forward as believing or not believing. Often it's a case of looking at it differently. One of the best sermons I ever heard was a priest who said that if anyone stands in front of you and claims to understand every word of the bible and have all the answers they are lying either to themselves or to you. I am a Christian. I do though understand that the bible as we know it today is a collection of 68 texts, written by many different people, some where the author is unknown or unclear. They were created over thousands of years in multiple languages that were in turn translated into Latin then into Medieval English and finally modern English. They were written for different purposes and for different audiences. There are books of history, poetry, law and prophecy. There are letters to individuals and letters to populations. With some exceptions, such as the gospels and the first 5 books of the Old Testament, very few were intended as holy texts. whats more different churches recognise different texts as belonging to the bible. A Catholic bible has quite a few differences to a Protestant one. An orthodox bible looks different again and so it goes. With all that in mind I don't think an individual who accepts the basics of Christianity, of God coming to earth in human form, living a blameless life, dying and rising again, but on the other hands asks questions of or even disagrees with how elements of the bible are applied to modern life is being disingenuous. They are simply applying their intellect to an incredibly complex text and coming up with a different answer.
  7. Cambridgeskip

    Scouts UK unveils new branding

    To be honest I'm ambivalent, but then Im no artist! The previous logo was difficult to manipulate online although equally I'm not sure why something techie couldn't have been done to cure that. I do like that it's simple so a Beaver could draw it. I also recognise that things like branding have to move forward otherwise you look dated. On the other side of the coin it looks closer to the 1908 logo than the last one! Writing this on a phone so can't figure out how to embed that so go look it up if you're curious. Its all part of a wider new 5 year strategy that we've all got say in our inboxes this morning http://scouts.org.uk/about-us/strategy/vision-for-2023 ive only skim read it so far but the two things that stand out good and bad are; Good - blink and you'd miss it but changes to the leader training program to bring in more practical scout skills. RESULT! The current leader training program is terrible and needs more practical skills. Bad - Scouting in schools. Not a fan. Part of what makes scouts special is the relationship between the adults and kids. We are not parents, police, teachers or social workers. We are something different. We are the nearest most kids will ever have to an adult sibling. Moving into schools will, I fear, risk that special relationship if leaders get put in the same bracket as teachers in kids minds.
  8. Cambridgeskip

    National, Religion, Membership, Oath and Law

    Don't forget that the role of the monarch under the Uk constitution is to do precisely nothing. Have you ever heard the current Queen offer an opinion on any political matter? No. Because she's not allowed to express one. That was all part of the deal when the monarch was re established following Cromwell's period as Lord Protector or whatever he called himself. The monarch theoretically appoints the Prime Minister but is required to appoint the member of parliament most likely to command a majority in the House of Commons. In practice that means the leader of the party with the largest number of seats. If there is any uncertainty on the matter such as with a hung parliament and no coalition being formed she in theory needs to make a choice but would do so on the advice of the privy council. Thats a long winded way of saying no one gave or gives a monkey's if the monarch is a man or woman because they don't do anything.
  9. Cambridgeskip

    National, Religion, Membership, Oath and Law

    I think a big thing to consider as well is both population density and population concentration. As well as the country as a whole having a much higher population density than the USA within the UK we are a much more urban population generally. The majoirty of our population is concentrated in a small number of very densly populated areas. Broadly London and surrounding dormitory towns English South Coast Welsh South Coast/Bristol West Midlands English central belt Scottish central belt And within each of those urban areas everything is smaller. Our houses are smaller, gardens smaller, roads narrower etc, bringing everything together that much closer. It not only makes for a different culture but makes running scouts easier. If I find myself short on adults I can phone a neighbouring group and borrow an adult for the evening and they just have to walk round the corner, not get in their car. It also means that most of my scouts live within 10 minutes walk of our building and walk or cycle there, certainly in summer its rare to have any parents picking up or dropping off. I couldn't agree with Ian more. It took an awful lot to turn the boat around and equally an awful lot that got that boat into trouble in the first place. Anyone that looks to the UK and says that going coed, on its own, caused membership losses or membership increases is massively overly simplifying things. A huge amount of changes were needed, all Ian says and more. The important thing is though, and I think this is massively important, is that the core doesn't reallyt look that different to what it did when I was a scout before the changes. Kids getting together, working in small groups, taking part in outdoor adventure and fun, with the added elements of a uniform, self discipline and community service is still there. What my lot did on Thursday, a wide games night out in the woods, looks pretty similar to what I was doing aged 12 on a Tuesday night. It's just in slightly different looking packaging. A thought that just occured to me is that it's like a man's suit. The cut is different to what it was in 1907, the fabric different, the cuff links different and you may see more women wear them than before but at it's core it hasn't changed. It just looks a bit different. Does that make sense?
  10. Cambridgeskip

    National, Religion, Membership, Oath and Law

    Dont forget your Boy Scouts goes to 18 where as ours goes to 14. So to make a direct comparison you need to include our explorers which runs 14-18 latest numbers (as at 31 Jan 2018) were released last week. Total across all ages now up to 638K. I've not seen a breakdown by age group though.
  11. Cambridgeskip

    Unit number change and embracing the new

    Can you phrase it slightly differently? Group mergers happen here and usually what you get is the two numbers separated by a back slash. So in Cambridge we have an 11th/9th (pronounced eleventh nineth), and a 6th/17th. Theoretically we have a 7th/23rd/13th but in practice it's too much of a mouthful and as they meet where the 13th always met everyone just calls them the 13th! Can you be known as 5th/36th or something similar? I've seen groups here that when they merged different sixes (what we call Dens) and patrols maintain the traditions of the predecesor groups. Different neckers and flags, that kind of thing. Is that possible? But yes, I understand how history matters. My own group is 107 years old and has traditions so old no one even knows where they came from anymore.
  12. Cambridgeskip

    High adventure photos

    And as an update..... I've done a draft of a souvenier/promo film for those that were on the course. It's a draft version so it's unlisted on youtube, so you'll need this link for a look. The snow hole in/out scene is for real by the way. While there was some cutting for getting it down to length there was no funny stuff with putting people in and out between takes, they did get that many in there
  13. Way back in 2007 when WSJ was in the UK I took some cubs for a day trip to the site here. Access for day visitors was restricted. They were not allowed into the actual camping areas themselves unless they knew someone there who acted as their guide. They were though allowed into most of the communal areas like faiths zone, global development zone, all the various things set up by national contingents to showcase their country etc. How it will be with you I don't know but it would not surprise me if it was similar.
  14. Cambridgeskip

    From National: Official Name

    I'd add that in the UK boys and girls tenting together is still relatively rare but is increasing. Hop across the channel to mainland Europe and it is far more common, especially in Scandanavia.
  15. Cambridgeskip

    From National: Official Name

    The trouble is that the world has changed, beyond recognition, since those texts were written. Two world wars, the rise and fall of Communism, man has been to the moon, universal suffrage, the admission of women to professions like law and medicine that wouldn't have been dreamed off 100 years ago, the internet. All these things have been massive changes to the world. Someone from 1912 would probably struggle to recognise the planet if you brought them in a time machine to today. The same will probably be true if you were to find yourself in 2021. Next month I will go to my cousin's wedding. She's 29 and a fully chartered accountant. She is finance director of the company she works for. Our joint late grandmother wanted to become an accountant when she was in her 20s, that was the 1930s, and she wasn't allowed simply because she was a woman. She had the necessary qualifications. It was simply being a woman. I am not making a direct comparison with what was an outrageous piece of sexism and the argument that teenage boys and girls are different because there is no comparison. My point is that arguments about things being done a certain way in the early days so should continue to be done that way don't hold water because the world has moved on, massively.