I’m amazed to see that the Scout movement has seen its biggest rise in membership in 20 years. Even when I was Youth Officer for the Church of Ireland [just think of that!] 25 years ago, it looked as if uniformed youth work was in trouble. Yes indeed – why would people join very traditional organisations with a liking for funny clothes? Yet with some careful and imaginative development work, a revival is under way – 15000 extra members joined last year.
I’m surprised. I would have thought it was hopeless – not least because of the difficulty of recruiting volunteer leadership. So the reversal of decline gives me hope ..
How interesting. Maybe kids are AT LAST looking for something other than Nintendo and Game Boy and Play Station (while on the other hand we their parents are getting hooked on blogging!)
I think I’ll have to look into this and see if there is anything clever that we in youth work in the church can learn from!
Scout age is just the age when our churches are losing children to other activites or they simply refuse to come any more because church isn’t cool.
Scouts are astonishing!
We have 160 members of our Scout Group here in Ballybrack, an obscure corner of south Co Dublin – Beavers, two Cub packs, two Scout troops and Venture Scouts. Brilliant senior leaders and a strong group of twenty somethings. This at a time when there is supposed to be a loss of social capital.
On the other hand, there is no interest whatsoever in a youth club – very passe.
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