In the Community Self Development Area, Network Scouts aim to:

  • develop better understanding of their values and be more confident in exploring their own beliefs
  • gain an understanding of and play an active role in their local community and wider society
  • learn to respect the values of others
  • learn to work in different groupings identifying the skills and attitudes needed to work with others
  • consider the importance of effective communications and interpersonal skills within differing groupings
  • review and reflect upon the benefit their actions have had for themselves and the community.

Some practical activities for this Self Development Area might include:

  • Design and build a garden for a local care home or hospice. Bear in mind those who will use the garden when building it. If you know a landscape gardener you could ask them for advice.
  • Work closely with a local charity and help them with fundraising opportunities and to promote awareness in the local community.
  • During the holiday season, plan and organise a playgroup for the local community, or arrange a set of events/trips for disadvantaged young people. Remember to check the rules laid out by OFSTED as well as the relevant child welfare rules.
  • Contact a local charity to offer your Scout Network’s services to redecorate/renovate a room in a rest home, children’s home or other similar venue.
  • During the winter months, offer a snow-clearing service to the elderly and those with special needs, provide a weekly shopping service, or arrange to call on people who don’t have many visitors.
  • Go carol singing in local care homes, hospices or other community locations.
  • At a local event, provide marshals to assist with car parking and crowd control, or offer first aid support from those members of Network that are first aid qualified.
  • Visit a local Magistrates Court or Crown Court and see what happens during the proceedings. Discuss whether the legal system discriminates in favour of or against any particular group. Afterwards, you could hold a mock trial or act out a case during an evening.
  • Contact an organisation dealing with drug abuse, and obtain information about how drug abuse is dealt with within the local community. You could also approach the local Police Authority who will have a drugs prevention unit.
  • Carry out a survey of religions in your local community and compare the different beliefs. Visit the different places of worship, discuss the different teachings and where possible take an active part in the service.
  • Represent your Network on the local youth council, County Executive or similar committee where the views of young people are sought.
  • Invite a local environmental expert to discuss the meanings of such terms as ‘ecology’, ‘recycling’, ‘natural environment’ and so on. Consider the information and visit local examples of where mankind is affecting the balance of nature.
  • Take part in an environmental project; contact the British Trust for Conservation Volunteers (BTCV) for projects in your local areas that the Network may be able to get involved with.
  • Find out about the Campaign to Protect Rural England, an organisation that works to protect the beauty, tranquility and diversity of rural England. Is there a project within your local community that would fit the criteria of the CPRE?
  • Make contact with the local Young Farmers’ Club to discuss with the Network members the impact of modern farming methods on the environment including the effects of GM crops.
  • Design, make and maintain a set of bird boxes at a local beauty spot or Scout campsite.
  • Contact the Forestry Commission and carry out some conservation projects under their guidance.
  • Contact your local Scout campsite and select a project which would improve the environment of the site and the surroundings.
  • Plant your own Network forest.