Welcome back to what I am confident will be a year of growth and challenge for us all. This year we celebrate 100 years of Cubbing in South Africa, and as you will have seen we are doing so in style! We hope to see you all joining in as we celebrate a century of providing young people the opportunity to grow and become better citizens.
We also enter the year in the midst of social and economic upheaval in our beloved country. We would be blind to not consider the ramifications thereof for our Movement. Therefore I would like to share a quote from our founder Lord Baden Powell:
In his closing address at the First World Jamboree, just after the end of the First World War, Lord Baden Powell said, “Scouts, I ask you to make a choice. Differences exist between the people of the world in thought and sentiment, just as they do in language and physique. The War has taught us that if one nation tries to impose its particular will upon others, cruel reaction is bound to follow. The Jamboree has taught us that if we exercise mutual forbearance and give-and-take, then there is sympathy and harmony. If it be your will, let us go forth from here fully determined that we will develop among ourselves and our Scouts that comradeship, through the world-wide spirit of the Scout family, so that we may help to develop peace and happiness in the world and goodwill among all Scouts, answer me. Will you join me in this endeavour?”
“Creating Messengers of Peace”
If we engage with our fellow Scout and citizens in that spirit there is no doubt that we can be a force for good and true Messengers of Peace in our communities. And maybe, just maybe we can be part of starting a tide of change for the better in the country.
Difficult economic times also challenge the time and resources we are able to contribute to Scouting, both individually and as an organisation. Remember that we are a team that works together, our youth, our parents and guardians and Scouters. If you feel you are taking strain, talk to the Scouting people around you and share that load where you can. If we are to continue making the kind of difference we do in the lives of the youth of this country, we need to grow our resources and we cannot afford to lose anyone of our skilled and dedicated Scouters. Don’t underestimate the ability of our youth to assist if you give them the opportunity to lead, with your support.
I wish you all a wonderful Scouting year with many hours of fun, learning and growth,
Yours in Scouting
Dr Brendon Hausberger
SCOUTS South Africa