Thank you to all who are involved in Bivouac 2018. The event is well underway and looks like it will be a great opportunity to learn #SkillsForLife. Staff Applications only remain open via the tab below.
42nd Annual County Survival Skills Activity Weekend
Saturday 15th – Sunday 16th September 2018 However, applicants MUST be available for ALL dates identified on their awards application information sheet; follow the link in the tabs below to download. Regrettably, if a participant misses any of the dates they will not be able to attend the activity weekend and we will not be able to refund their money.
Run annually for over 40 years, Bivouac is unique to Birmingham County Scouts. Four sequential awards (Training, Assessment, Junior Leader and Junior Staff) span a four-year period, each specifically tailored to give participants the next level of skills needed to make the above example seem like an afternoon stroll in the woods. Participants have to successfully complete each award before progressing onto the next, earning the right to wear their awards distinctive and prestigious Birmingham County BIVOUAC badge. The awards don’t end there; Training participants are awarded the Survival Skills Activity Badge, Assessment Participants are awarded the Emergency Aid Stage 3 Activity Badge and Junior Staff complete Module A of the Young Leaders Award.
Bivouac (biv-oo-ak) – to live comfortably in camp, a Scout must know how to make a Bivouac shelter for the night … a temporary camp without tents or cover …
(Adapted from ‘Scouting For Boys’) It’s getting dark and it’s starting to rain. You’ve been separated from your group and you’re hopelessly lost. It looks like you’re going to have to spend the night in the forest. With only the equipment in your rucksack and the countryside around you, would you know how to survive?
All who apply must understand what is expected from them. There are no backup facilities; no electricity, no running water, no flushing toilets, no lights, no mobile phones, no google – we go sofar as say you are entering a hostile environment. There is just you, your knowledge, your survival tin, your knife, your sleeping bag and 1500 acres of forest … Training and Assessment participants will need to build and sleep in a Bivouac made from natural materials – prepare, cook and eat your own selection of foods which could be found in the UK countryside (no processed food is found) – carried in the rucksack you bring – cooked on the open fire you build – from wood you find – using the utensils you make – with the knife you bring – whatever the weather.
Training Award participants receive instruction and coaching throughout the weekend – topics include shelter building, fire lighting, knife safety, cooking without utensils, basic first aid, gadgets & utensils, water collection & purification, tree identification, direction finding, distress signals – and plenty of time is given to practice the new-found skills. Assessment Award participants must understand their training is now over. After being given the opportunity to refresh their skills at a preparation day, it is the individual’s skills that will be tested – all have to pass a series of tests, gaining at least 70% at both assessment events to achieve the Bivouac Award. All who have been successful wear the distinctive badge with pride, and rightly so – whilst leaders will be supportive, this badge is earned and not given away. It is essential participants prepare fully for both parts of the assessment – the links on the right contain a huge wealth of information, including every question and answer for Assessment Part 1 – we don’t think we can get fairer than that … Junior Leaders will experience a physically and mentally demanding 28 hours – participants do not have to build a Bivouac, but there are no tents either … survival is dependent upon the completion of a number of team building, problem solving and individual challenges. Ideal for Explorer Scouts who have a genuine interest in survival skills and wish to put those skills along with their own physical and mental abilities to the test. The activity weekend itself is shrouded in mystery and you will be hard pressed to find any former Junior Leader who will talk about their experience. Junior Staff now use the survival, leadership and teamwork skills that they already possess to help support the selection, preparation, assessment and briefing days, play an active role in the planning meetings and help coordinate a sector on the activity weekend with other members of Adult Staff. Bivouac Leaders & Adult Staff are the backbone of Bivouac. The activity needs the ongoing support of approximately 60 appointed adult leaders and non-appointed helpers, predominantly but not exclusively from Birmingham County. Applications are welcomed from anybody over 18 who has a valid up-to-date Scouting DBS check and be recorded on a Group, District or County census. For further information, the organising team can be contacted on firstname.lastname@example.org
Online applications for young people are now closed. Adult Staff applications remain open.
- Bivouac Training Award
- Bivouac Assessment Award
- Junior Leader Award
- Junior Staff Award
- Bivouac Leader / Adult Staff
Constructive feedback with practical suggestions for change or improvement is always welcomed. A huge amount of work goes into the planning and organisation of the activity and there is always room for development and enhancement. We are keen to hear feedback on the new online application process for 2017, the quality of the information provided prior to the event, the timing, location and organisation of the planning meetings, briefing events and preparation days, the activity weekend transport, the cost of the activity and the overall general organisation. In the first instance, please contact email@example.com.