Inspiring children to lead by example

South African Regulations on Traveling with ChildrenEvery year on the 20th of November we commemorate World Children’s Day. As we all come together to reimagine the type of world we want to create post Covid-19, it is also important to reflect on how our children have been stepping up over the past months.

Early childhood education is inextricably linked to how children will perform as adults, largely because early learning builds the foundation for later success. SCOUTS South Africa prepares young people to overcome life’s challenges and to succeed as skilled, confident and productive members of society. These life lessons are learned by implementing practical hands-on initiatives.

Durbanville/Kraaifontein Sea Scouts in the Western Cape is one of many Scout Groups that went over and above to ensure that their members still got the opportunity to learn while doing – albeit from home.

In addition to weekly virtual Zoom meetings where the children completed tasks from their respective advancement programmes, the Scout Group challenged their Meerkats (aged 5-6), Cubs (aged 7-10) Scouts (aged 11-17) and Rovers (18-30) to help their community members who were in dire need of a warm meal. “It is our duty as Scouts to help our communities where we can”, explained Meerkat Den Scouter Angela Hillier. “Our Group collected over 250 jars of hope – which translates about 1000 warm meals”, she says with pride. “Our children really did rise to the occasion as they realised, they were in a position to help those less fortunate than themselves. Our young adults, Rovers then delivered the jars to car guards within the Durbanville/Kraaifontein and Brackenfell communities. Some of the jars were also distributed through Won life Community Centre in Fisantekraal, Durbanville.”

But the children and youth did not stop there. They decided to raise funds for hungry families by running 1km or completing a set of aerobic exercises every day for 15 days at their homes. “Our aim was to raise a minimum of R150 each in order to pay for a food parcel to feed a family of 4 for a week”, explains Rachel Johnson, the treasurer of the Scout Group. “Participating children were encouraged to ask their families and friends to sponsor them for each day they completed, in order to raise as much money as possible. A total of R13,815 was raised for this worthy project” she says with excitement. “R10,000 was divided amongst the Peninsula School Feeding Association; the Durbanville Baptist Church for crisis relief in Delft, Fisantekraal and other local areas as well as U-turn who provides meals to the homeless. The remainder of the funds were used to put together food parcels and vegetable boxes which were delivered by the Rovers to families affected by the lockdowns in our immediate area” she concludes.

Through Scouting children learn to do a good turn every day, to be kind and to embrace a mentality of service to others. So as we reimagine a new world, we can take a sigh of relief as with children and youth like the members of 1st Durbanville/Kraaifontein and Scout Groups around the country, our children’s futures and that of our communities will be in good hands.

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