Youth take charge at international Scout workshop in Pax Hill

Putting youth at the forefront of decision making in the Scouts was at the heart of a five-day workshop at Pax Hill which came to a close on Tuesday afternoon. 

Empowering youth: Young Scout leaders James Carfax-Foster, Elodie Prinsloo, Clair Udy and Lisa Kim at Pax Hill Scout Hall in Ballarat. Picture: Lachlan Bence

Empowering youth: Young Scout leaders James Carfax-Foster, Elodie Prinsloo, Clair Udy and Lisa Kim at Pax Hill Scout Hall in Ballarat. Picture: Lachlan Bence

More than 100 Scout representatives from 19 countries across the Asia Pacific region including Thailand, Indonesia and Hong Kong made the trek to Ballarat for the intensive meeting.  

Participants were pushed to come up with new ways to ensure young people played a proactive role in the governance of the Scouts movement.   

Recommendations from the workshop will be taken to the Scouts Asia Pacific Region Conference in October, which is set to take place in the Philippines.  

Scouts national commissioner for youth empowerment Elodie Prinsloo said the camps showed how the Scouts movement could break down language and cultural barriers. 

“The point of this workshop is to ensure the whole becomes more youth involved and allows young people to have a seat at every table where decisions are being made which will affect their program,” Ms Prinsloo said.   

Lisa Kim from South Korea at the intensive workshop. Picture: Lachlan Bence

Lisa Kim from South Korea at the intensive workshop. Picture: Lachlan Bence

“You suddenly have this connection with people from across the world and it’s about forming friendships and connections and being able to engage with one another. 

As well as spending time at Ballarat attractions such as the Wildlife Park, representatives were also taken to Melbourne where Scouts as young as eight were allowed to take charge of team exercises.   

Among the international representatives was Lisa Kim, who made the trip from South Korea for the conference.  She said the workshop allowed her to understand how Scout groups in Australia  encourage young people to get involved.   

“I was really inspired to see it happening in a country in our region.”