Well I’m not to sure how we have got to the end of the year but wow what a different year it has been for all us. I am sure that we could never have imagined at the start of 2020 just how much the landscape of our normal lives would be changed and challenged, nor the impact that COVID-19 would have had on our day to day lives and our Scouting world.
But what we have learnt from this year is just how resilient and resourceful our leaders across the County can be when they are put into situations that last year would have seemed unimaginable.
Throughout the year we have had to adapt to a changing horizon and to be able to continue to provide Scouting in a virtual manner has meant many of our leaders have also had to learn new skills for this to take place. But as challenging as it was we did press on and provided as much of a programme as we could for all of our sections. In fact we were able to adjust our schedule to provide virtual events for many youngsters. As a County, our Summer of Weekly Challenges gave a focus for our Young People over these months, moving onto our iJam Challenges and then our iJam Festival.
We saw Leaders pooling their resources to support County section events such as CubBrumChallenge, BrumBeaversGoEco and Christmas events for Cubs and Beavers. BrumVenture continued as a virtual weekend as did iceScout ( at Home), we had a live Remembrance service and we have developed new programmes such as the Walking Festival ‘Shirehike’ and the’ More in Common’ badge which will continue into 2021. All providing skills, activities and much needed fun for our Young People ( and for many joining in with siblings and parents who also got involved). Remarkably, our virtual events haven’t stopped us recruiting new members and it’s been great to hear your stories of how young people, new to Scouting, have joined your Groups. As a County Team, we’ve also attracted new leaders to help with these events either presenting, idea creating or in the technical support teams – many had not worked together or had the skills but were happy to get involved to provide much-needed respite for Zoom weary Leaders.
Over the year it is amazing that with all the restrictions we have had to work around we have still managed to achieve the following:
- 1,500 County badges given out ( alongside the Section ones)
- 170 subscribers to our County YouTube channel
- 10,000 views on YouTube
- Over 500 Chief Scout Awards
And the charity which we chose to support LoveBrum currently has donations of over £750.
As we move into 2021, we hope that many of our sections will be able to return to Face to Face Scouting, where it would be great to get back to our more comfortable HQ surroundings, however we also know that we’re going to face many challenges next year – ensuring that as many of our adult volunteers and young people come back to Scouting being key, and notwithstanding the financial pressures some of you may be feeling. As a County we know that we will face this together and the County and District teams will be there to provide support where we can.
You are all truly inspiring and I am sure that moving forward into 2021 we will all look back on 2020 as a year to remember in many ways. Can I take this opportunity to wish you and your families a very Merry Christmas – please take this time to value your friends and family and take time out to be with them however you are celebrating.
Please stay safe and we will see you all in 2021.