Leighton Scouts head numbers boost
SCOUTING in the Leighton-Linslade has seen a 17 per cent boost, leading an impressive decade of growth in Bedfordshire that has taken numbers to its highest this century.
Total numbers in Bedfordshire now stand at 6,271 children. This impressive surge in membership - the twelfth consecutive year of growth - has helped cement Scouting’s position as the largest co-educational youth movement in the county.
Since the World Scout Jamboree in 2007 numbers in Bedfordshire have grown by an impressive 10.2% from 5690 in 2008 to 6271 in 2012. All regions have shown strong growth with Leighton Linslade leading the way - 504 up 17.2% from 430 in 2008.
A large part of the growth is due to the enormous range of adventures and activities provided for young people. They can enjoy more than 200 activities including zorbing, water skiing, abseiling and adventure glider flights as well as more traditional skills such as camping, cooking a meal, reading a map, hiking and climbing.
A report unveiled last year demonstrates the positive impact of Scouting for young people:
38% of young people in Scouting have volunteered for another organisation
40% of voluntary groups surveyed would not be able to get the same amount of work done if Scouts had not been involved
36% of former youth Scout members volunteer for two hours a week, compared to 26% for the general population
Previous studies have also shown that each year Scout Leaders contribute the equivalent of 37 million hours voluntary work which is the equivalent of £380m worth of unpaid youth work. In Bedfordshire this contribution to the local economy is worth more than £4m.
County Commissioner Chris Bent added, “What great news for Bedfordshire as we enjoy another year of growth. After we celebrated our centenary in 2007 we saw what we called a Jamboree bounce in membership numbers but the good news is that this still continues.”
Chief Scout Bear Grylls also endorsed the news. He said, “It is so great to see Scout numbers rising in Bedfordshire and a big reason for this is the number of teenagers joining - almost 400 in the last 12 years. More and more young people are realising that Scouting offers them so much - whether it’s the opportunity to go on a big international adventure or the chance to learn and hone vital life skills.”
To find out more about Scouts call 0845 300 1818 or access the county website at: www.bedfordshirescouts.org.uk.
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Weather for Leighton Buzzard
Thursday 23 May 2013
Temperature: 4 C to 10 C
Wind Speed: 18 mph
Wind direction: North west
Temperature: 4 C to 10 C
Wind Speed: 26 mph
Wind direction: North