It hardly seems possible that a week has passed since my last email. I hope this message finds you all well?
I wanted to update you weekly about the ongoing situation and as I’m sure you’ve guessed; we are still required to suspend face-to-face meetings. However, I’ve been overwhelmed by the positive response and incredible participation of our members with the activities and digital events we’ve held. This has included germ experiments, games and even an online troop meeting for the Scouts last Friday. Well done everyone, I hope you’ve been enjoying remote scouting as best you can and keep up the great work.
We’re still working hard to build up a bank of activities and sections will be sharing many more activities via our website (www.11th.org.uk), especially around the times of usual section meetings, so keep any eye out. Andy, our webmaster, has been working hard to make sure we have a simple and easy way of sharing all of your efforts, so please keep an eye on that website. Please, please keep trying things and sharing them with us, we really appreciate it and look forward to seeing your (remote!) scouting in action.
I also wanted to take a moment to talk about membership subscriptions. We know that times are challenging and subs are another pressure we can do without but I am so grateful for the understanding that has been shown with the conversations with parents I’ve had so far. As you know, we have a very modern scouting centre to call home which up until this month has always paid its own way, minimising the costs to our members. Since the cancellation of all activities at the centre – outside hirers as well as our own activities, we’ve had to look very carefully at our finances to ensure we can continue to meet the regular monthly commitments that come with operating a building regardless of whether or not it is being used. As you also know, our membership subscription is £132 per year (September to August) that for convenience we split over 11 monthly payments of £12 per month. After review and careful consideration by trustees we are reducing the membership subscription for the next month to £6 per member. This will be automatically completed our end, with the 1st April being the first direct debit payment at the reduced rate. We know this isn’t ideal and if this causes any financial hardship, please do contact us so we can work together. We will review this monthly as time goes on and let you know if anything changes in plenty of time.
We are also very keen to ensure that Scouting is still good value for money for our members, with plenty of activities available to help everyone stay involved with Scouting, which is why our volunteer leader teams have been creating more and more content to share. You should see the fruits of this labour even more this week as we’re getting our heads around how to do what we want to do!
I couldn’t be prouder of our Scouting family than at this moment as everyone seems to be throwing themselves in to the activities and making the best of the situation. I look forward to seeing arms full of badges once we’re through the other side of this!
I will write to everyone again next Monday, so until then, please keep safe and carry on Scouting.
Group Scout Leader
(contact via the web form on the homepage)