“A volunteer action is like a stone thrown in a lake: its effect has a direct impact. At the same time, like ripples, volunteer efforts reach out far and wide to improve communities. Undeniably, volunteers rock!”
Canadian Volunteer Promotion
Last week, 1st - 7th June 2015, was Volunteer Week, an annual and nationwide celebration of the extraordinary contribution millions of volunteers make to our lives. To mark the event here is a brief record of what the volunteers who run the 1st St Margarets Cub Pack got up to during that period…
MONDAY 1st JUNE
Prepare programme for Wednesday’s Pack night - including games and activities - and perhaps Badge work. Decide to start with ‘Hobbies Badge’ - maybe building pinwheels? Check we have enough pinwheels. We do! Confirm names of the 3 parent helpers assigned for this week. Send out programme.
TUESDAY 2nd JUNE
Influx of new children means we have to restructure the ‘sixes’ - the small units in which the Cubs operate. Will ‘X’ get on with ‘Y’? Multiply problem by 30. Visit parent who needs DBS (Disclosure and Barring Service) Clearance to allow them to come camping. This new digital system takes about an hour and requires sitting down with the applicant at a computer. Multiply problem by 30.
WEDNESDAY 3rd JUNE
5.45pm Cub Night. Arrive at St Stephen’s School Hall and prepare for arrival of Cubs at 6.00pm. Cubs back from half term and very lively. At ‘Grand Howl’ we salute the Union Flag and the Cubs promise to ‘Do Their Best’. Organise the new ‘sixes’ and await grumbling. ‘X’ doesn’t want to be with ‘Y’. Rethink the revised structure. Walk in crocodile down to Moor Mead Park and play “Jail Break”. Very noisy. Return to St. Stephen’s Hall for drinks and toilet. Cubs settle down to make pinwheels. Peace, perfect peace. 7.30pm Cubs go home. Chat to ‘newbie’ parents about the forthcoming camp
THURSDAY 4th JUNE
Paperwork - send subscription cheques to Group Treasurer. Assemble “Nights Away Permission” forms for the sleep-over at the weekend aboard Sir Francis Drake’s ship the “Golden Hinde”. Buy raisins, biscuits and soft drinks to take on trip.
FRIDAY 5th JUNE
Pack rucksack and check that we’ve got all the paperwork needed for the sleep-over. Call the ‘Golden Hinde’ to confirm arrival time.
SATURDAY 6th JUNE
2.00pm Assemble at St Margarets Station. Count the party and check names - 18 children plus 5 adults. Travel to Waterloo. Count Cubs. Travel by Jubilee Line to London Bridge. Count Cubs. Walk to ‘Golden Hinde’. Count Cubs yet again! Leave bags on the ship and then walk to Tower Bridge where we all stand on the crack where the two halves of the bridge meet. Count Cubs. Walk back to Golden Hinde. On the way we meet a German couple who tell us that in their country Scouts are called “Fart Finder!” (Phadfinder). Cubs very amused.
5.00pm Return to Golden Hinde and change into ships uniform as worn at time of Sir Francis Drake’s circumnavigation of the world - 1580. Meet crew - Master, Barber-Surgeon and Cabin Boys. Spend evening learning how to amputate limbs and load cannon. Cubs appreciate the advice from Barber-Surgeon that urine is a universal miracle - useful in treating skin eruptions, diagnosing stomach complaints and cooling down red hot cannon in battle. Sleep on the gun deck beneath the cannons. Verv quiet night.
SUNDAY 7TH JUNE
9.30am Change back into our uniforms and have breakfast. Count Cubs. Travel to North Greenwich on Clipper. Count Cubs. Cross the Thames on the Emirates Air Line to Royal Docks. When Cubs go to the toilet in ‘The Crystal’ an Austrian family tells us that in their country a ‘wee-wee’ is called a ‘lu-lu’. Cubs very amused. Count them again. Travel by DLR to Tower Gateway. Cubs wonder why there is no driver or guard on the DLR. Tower Gateway Station closed. Grrrr! Count Cubs again. Catch bus to Waterloo Station and then train to Richmond and waiting parents. Arrive home at 3.30pm, tired but happy, fart finders all!
“Those who can, do. Those who can do more, volunteer.”
– from Martyn Day