Damboree 2018 Retrospective & Prospective

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Seasons Greetings

Look-astern 2018

Although it’s been said before it goes without saying that Damboree owes a huge amount to a large number of people who made Damboree 2018, the First Damboree a success beyond our wildest aspirations. The moral support, and patience,  shown by so many of our fellow Scouting colleagues humbles us again and again.

The shared success of Damboree2018, we reckon, involved nearly 4000 adult supporters, for 12,000-13,000 youth participants, and a shade over 200 Nights Away Permits granted as part of our #BeaversInTents mantra. Our aim to get the message across that #BeaversAreScouts_ScoutsCamp has had a massive impact across the Scouts UK organisation in pushing through the misinformation that was rife about Beavers camping. So if you partook, even in the smallest way, please give yourselves a huge B-R-A-V-O, a pat on the back and a well-earned rest over the festive period.

Did we get everything right? No we did not, we got a number of things wrong, particularly around badge ordering, our organisational status and a dependency on one person to validate Gold Badge Permit awards.

Hopefully we’ve fixed that, and we’ll be mopping up any outstanding golds as soon as we can. If you haven’t received your Gold, please order again from our store, with your Karuna receipt, and your permit/role images, and we’ll get that shipped as a matter of urgency.

Damboree has been a difficult beast to slot into the Scout Association hierarchy, we were turned down for National Active Support Unit Status, but found a generous supporting home in Milton Keynes District, we are now an official District Active Support Unit, and we’ll be advertising roles within the ASU in the new year, to help us support the growth of Damboree as a major proponent of the Nights Away Scheme.

We’ve made developments on our website to enable us to improve many aspects of our ordering process so we’ll get a whole new set of challenges next year

Breaking The Mould

Damboree has oft taken pride in being a group of individuals who challenge the status quo. Our whole raison d’etre was to break the barriers to Beavers camping, and in many places we succeeded, some we didn’t. Some of the horror-story local rules we came across that needed challenging would alarm many of you who know better.

Some fights we lost.

However we achieved a national recognition we hadn’t forecast at the Scout Association AGM, through a question submitted by John May, who had graciously volunteered to be our El Presidente around how grass roots initiatives such as our can gain the support & recognition at a national level, because we’d struggled to get the support of the HQ machinery, we didn’t fit anywhere, we still don’t really, we’re a District In Name Only (DINO) Active Support Unit. However as a result of that interjection, and subsequent engagement with HQ through Tim Kidd, UK Chief Commissioner, we’re hoping that we’ll be able to support more people breaking through local rules, myths and politics and get more young people camping.

Look-ahead 2019

Speaking of next year, see? there is a flow to this, 2019 is already shaping up with 244 Registrations of intent, with over 6000 young people having Damboree events organised for them, this includes 2800 Cubs who’re included for Damboree 2019, and we’re already looking at 95 new Nights Away Assessments for Campsite Permits, fingers crossed for everyone being assessed.

We have all new badge designs for 2019 too, adapted to include a Turquoise for Beavers, as you’d expect, an Emerald for Cubs and Silver and Golds for supporters & Permit achievers

Ordering for these will open towards the end of January as the new season hoves into view.

And Finally….

The Damboree Team would like to wish you all the appropriate Seasons Greetings that apply to you and your family (however that is made up), whether that’s Hanukkah, Christmas, Yalda, Kwanzaa, Yule or any others that we’ve missed out. Bah Humbug to one and all. We hope you are well rested for another year of Damboree! 

One more thing….

The Damboree Team is made up of a number of active members who you meet and see on social media on a regular basis…Ben, Sue, John, Andy T, Andy S and more recently Leigh, Ang and Louise.

The Team also includes a number of less prominent, but no less essential, characters, Sam, Tony, Clive, Ray, Kevin, Chris,  OSM and our badge partner Karuna Badges.

They are an awesome team to work with, and give up many hours making this happen, I personally thank them for their support and efforts, and I am so glad they’re on our team supporting you.

Karuna Badges – Badge Partner

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