You have probably noticed that across the UK and Europe, things are starting to change as Governments try to come out of lockdown. This is positive news for us in Scouting. Coming out of lockdown is more complex than lockdown itself.

The Scout Association has now started to release information on their website and through webinars (the first was on 2nd July) about the process we need to take to get us to any form of face to face Scouting safely. I’d like to reassure you that the County and District Teams are digesting the information and we will be working with groups for a planned and considered approach to returning to face to face Scouting. There are three things that spring to mind:

   1.  RACE: This is not a race to get back to face to face Scouting as soon as we can; we need to “Think, plan and then do”.

   2. OVERLOAD: There is a lot of information and many more questions resulting. There is no need to take it all on your own shoulders. We will work as a County together across our 8 districts to ensure we all return to Scouting safely.

   3. SHARE: The County and Districts will be sharing resources, ideas and approaches for our safe return to face to face Scouting.

The state of readiness has not changed this week and remains at RED. Last week I said that The Scout Association would continue to follow the guidance set by the National Youth Agency who in turn, take all their guidance from the Department of Culture, Media and Sport. Please do not follow anything you see from the Department of Education, this is not of relevance to us in Scouting.

Regrettably, there have been a number of inappropriate Scouting gatherings cropping up across the country during the last few days and I would like to remind you, that whilst we remain at a readiness status of RED, no face to face Scouting can take place, even in a socially distanced way.

Please also remember no face to face Scouting can take place when we go to Amber and Yellow readiness levels until risk assessments have been approved by the District Commissioner or designated approver and no young people can attend an event without explicit parental consent.

On a brighter note, many thanks to Bury St Edmunds District and 1st Eye for inviting me to their virtual campfires last weekend. I really enjoyed both events. I’d also like to give a big thank you to the Impact Team for setting and running the Pride event last Sunday, it was a great event. And finally, check out more ‘at home’ activities at #adventurecontinues, have fun.

Below you can find out more about Ingenious Scouting, Gift Aid Campaign and a chance to appear on radio!

Wishing you a good weekend and please feel free to invite me to your events.

   Mark Pearson

County Commissioner – Suffolk

Tel: 07802 249 686

Ingenious Scouting

How do hold virtual meetings with your Scout Troop if you are a Sea Scout Group and water activities are an essential part of your programme?

Well, 5th Woodbridge Sea Scouts have adapted their programme to try and make it accessible to as many Scouts as possible in the group. 

Noo, the Scout Leader made a stop motion video ( explaining the rules of the road for their nautical skills requirements. A week or so ago using Zoom the Scouts made model boats and used them for capsize drills in washing up bowls. Before that they learnt about suitable and unsuitable clothing also using Zoom, which resulted in some fabulous dressing up. One Scout managed to get full length wetsuit on over his uniform! You can take the Sea Scouts away from the water, but you can’t stop them boating!

It’s not all about Zoom though. They have 3 or 4 activities available each week, some that require a computer/internet, some that are printable, some that are craft based. 

Well done 5th Woodbridge Sea Scouts!

Campaign to increase the amount of Gift Aid charities can claim

The National Council for Voluntary Organisations have joined with other sector bodies to ask the government for a temporary increase of the level of Gift Aid that can be claimed on donations. This would provide a boost to charities’ fundraising income, helping them to increase the vital support they’re provide for communities hit by the economic and social consequences of the pandemic.

More information about the campaign can be found on the NVCO website. Learn more about the campaign 

Get onto the Radio and in to the Press – Paw Power Gimme 5

I hope that you have joined this initiative fund raising for young people in Suffolk (which could be your Group if you successfully apply), more details on our website.  Suffolk Community Foundation (SCF) are seeking to sustain the interest and momentum over the six months, and they are putting together a bank of stories about fundraisers such as Suffolk Scouts. SCF are wanting to share what young people in Scouting have done for Paw Power Gimme 5 on the radio and the EADT as well as social media, which will hopefully inspire others to follow in their footsteps. 

Alternatively, if you wish to do other fundraising activities that either the Young Lives Campaign or the Coronavirus Campaign, then please also get in touch.  Please drop a line to Keith Gleen on