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The new District Commissioner for Kincardineshire is Janine Sydenham.

We are delighted to let you know that our new District Commissioner for Kincardineshire is Janine Sydenham.
Janine has a wealth of experience in both voluntary and professional settings having a background in both Scouting and Girlguiding. Janine is a Human Resources and Project Management Professional outside of Scouting for a reputable company, making her an excellent appointment to drive forward Kincardineshire and give more young people the #SkillsForLife.
Janine is a passionate volunteer and outdoors person enjoying her time with the local coastal rowing crew, using her paddleboard and scuba diving with the British Sub Aqua Club.
Janine said on her new appointment: "After seeing my daughter enjoy Cubs for several years, I knew I wanted to give something back. I am an active "outdoors person" and camping nut, I am happiest away camping and being active, whether it's with our coastal rowing crew, wobbling on my stand up paddleboard or off scuba diving with the British Sub Aqua Club. I'm passionate on allowing young people to experience the outdoors in a safe environment and keen to enable leaders to deliver exciting programmes to their young people, equipping them with #skillsforlife whilst having a huge amount of fun, creating memories and lifelong friends, too. Volunteering enables me to pass on my skills, knowledge and experience to others.  As an HR and project management professional, there's loads I want to bring to the DC role, but also, volunteering is an excellent way to feel good about yourself.  Scouts are supportive - there is an excellent team backing you all the way, and I have learnt so much from fellow Scouters in the last 4 years.  I have had excellent training and support, and there is always someone to talk to if you want help or support. It really is #GoodForYou."
Regional Commissioner Dougie Simmers commented: "District Commissioners are the cornerstone for all Scouting with a District, they oversee the complete management of Scouting from the program of our youth members to all the background functions of a district to ensuring our more local operational effectiveness, this makes it one of the most crucial roles in our organisations. Janine brings in new skills and has fresh ideas as a seasoned Human Resources and Project Management Professional with a reputable company, on how Kincardineshire Scouts will develop and grow as we come out of the pandemic restrictions and most importantly ensuring that we continue to deliver the #SkillsForLife to as many young people in the area of Kincardineshire as possible. I am very excited to be able to announce Janine taking on this role and joining my team of District Commissioners, who do so much for the youth in the North East of Scotland."
Looking forward, Janine cannot wait to get all around the District (as per restrictions), meet volunteers and young people, listen to your feedback on where you would like the district to go and plan for a great future for the district. 
Please add your congratulations to the social media posts and if you are ready for a bigger role with the district team, now is a fantastic time to step forward and drive forward Kincardineshire's success.
To contact Janine please contact her on


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Blog | ReQuest 2021 - Adventure of a Lifetime
22/09/2021 By Website Admin
A team of ten Scouts officially launched their Antarctic Research Project – ReQuest2021 – in London on board the 100-year-old Thames barge called the Lady Daphne. Sam Payne, one of the expedition participants is from Inverurie, Aberdeenshire and will be representing Scotland as one of the two original Scottish Scouts who sailed with Shackleton on the original Shackleton-Rowlett ‘Quest’ expedition. Sam will be following in the footsteps of James Marr, also a Scout from the North East, who assisted Ernest Shackleton on his trip to the South Pole, 100 years ago.
The Lady Daphne was part of a flotilla of half-a-dozen Scout boats that made their way from Greenwich and then under Tower Bridge – which opened its famous bridge spans – into the Pool of London to mark the launch of the Scout’s ReQuest2021, Antarctica Project.
The team of Scouts on board Lady Daphne were hand-picked for their personal research projects on topics spanning climate change, the arts and science.
One experiment the team will undertake is to study the Krill population of the region which is a basic component of the Antarctic food chain. To do this the team has using the same style of Nansen Nets as originally used by Marr in his the experiments conducted 100 years ago. The data collected in 2021 will be compared to the data collected in 1921 and real time information will be gained on the health of the Antarctic waters.
Launching ReQuest2021 the Honourable Alexandra Shackleton, granddaughter of Sir Ernest Shackleton, said:
“I am enormously impressed by the attitude, dedication and attention to detail that these ten members of Scouting have shown. It will be a truly life-changing experience for each and every one of them. I am very much looking forward to learning more about their individual projects and how we can work together to educate more people around the world about the need to protect our fragile polar ecosystem.”
The 23-day expedition will begin on 30th December 2021 with the 2000km+ voyage on board Bark Europa from Ushuaia, Argentina, crossing the infamous Drake Passage, to the Antarctic Peninsula which the Scouts will be exploring for two weeks.
Whilst in Antarctica, as well as working on their projects, the team will get to help crew the tall ship and to visit the UK Antarctic Heritage Trust base of Port Lockroy. They will also make a number of landings to study wildlife and carry out some ice trekking through dramatic scenery.
Dougie Simmers, Regional Commissioner for North East Scotland Scouts commented:
“ReQuest 2021 shows how far a Scout can go in the movement; Antarctica is truly the ultimate adventure, where Sam will put the skills for life learned with Scouts into practice at every turn. Antarctica is a destination, a select few people ever get to experience first-hand in their lives and now Sam will be one of them following his time as a Scout in the North East of Scotland.
Dwayne Fields – Naturalist and Polar Explorer added:
"Recreating expeditions like Shackleton’s classic 1921 journey gives Scouts from 2021 a real way to experience what those Polar pioneers must have experienced 100 years ago. Being inspired by Shackleton and some of the other greats from our past as well as sharing some of the same experiences that Shackleton’s team did back in 1921 helps shine a modern light on climate change issues which is the greatest challenge of our times. It’s important to see the Scouts doing their bit to tackle this issue."
To support Sam on his amazing adventure, consider donating towards his fundrasing page or purchase:
ReQuest2021 Tea-Towel here.
Christmas cards, pack of 10 £4 plus p&p here.
Wrist bands £5 plus p&p here.
Sew on badges £2 plus p&p here.


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Blog | NEScouts launch #TidyTheTrash
23/04/2021 By Website Admin
We #FilledOurFoodbanks back in December, we came together and made a massive impact by delivering months' worth of food to local food banks, helping some of our most vulnerable people in society. 
Now, we want to help #BuildBackBetter and we are launching our #TidyTheTrash challenge for sections and groups to take part: by doing litter picks in an area of their choice and then keeping it clean for a period of time! A perfect activity for amber level scouting.
We've set out the steps so you can organise your own litter pick below. Please register with us then make sure to keep track of how many bags of litter you collect and record with us on the 18th of June (if you finish before that, you can record it with us before that date!)
We've also set up a resources pages with links to badges, social media content, and much more, check it out!

Get Involved using these easy steps!

1) Purchase the relevant equipment remember to let us know you are taking part!)

2) Educate your section/group on why it's never been more needed and help the young people choose place/s they would like to clean up during the campaign.

3) Once the dates, times and frequency are confirmed, make sure to take before and after photos and lots of selfies! Remember to record how many bags you collect each time!

4) After each litter pick, make sure you liaise with your local council authority to properly dispose of the waste, make sure it's separated into recyclables and non-recyclables so we can help our environment even more.

5) At the end of your agreed plan, fill out our completion form by the 18th of June and also give us a little feedback on your experience during the campaign. We'll record your impact on our interactive map so you can see the impact!


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Blog | NEScouts now at Amber
11/03/2021 By Website Admin

Following the recent announcement from the Scottish Government relating to some easing of restrictions and in line with the strategic framework, I have been working with YouthLink Scotland to update the guidance for Youthwork Activity in Scotland. I can confirm that Scouting in Scotland (along with other youth work providers) will be moving back to the Amber readiness level from Friday 12 March 2021.

As you will be aware youth work continues to link closely with schools and therefore, from tomorrow, we will move to Amber with groups allowed to meet outdoors in group sizes of 15, this includes young people and adults.

From tomorrow you will be able to operate within your local authority until further information is made available about the updated level system later in April. This can include non-contact outdoor activity. However, group travel as part of the activity e.g. outings and trips, is currently not permitted. Please note that adults can cross Local Authority boundaries to get to their normal meeting place.

I am still working with the Government on longer term plans for camping and larger group sizes but we expect these to be introduced steadily throughout the summer. We hope that this will be a phased approach and we will keep you advised.

As with the strategic framework, all target dates are subject to the vaccination programme continuing at the same rate and the rate of infections reducing across the country.

Physical distancing should be maintained at all times between adults, between adults and children/young people and between young people aged 12 and over. This is currently 2m. Youth work leaders should consult the latest Scottish Government guidance for the current default position for physical distancing, including the rules for children aged 11 and under and those aged 12+. Leaders should also continue to follow FACTS. Face coverings are optional outdoors, unless physical distancing can’t be maintained for short periods.

We always need to consider the risks as we’re dealing with different strains of the virus and the majority of people at our meetings will not have been vaccinated yet. Outdoor meetings are being relaxed initially due to the lower risk of transmission outdoors, and we would recommend meeting outdoors where you can, in the spring and summer months.

Taking part in Scouts is voluntary for all leaders and young people and nobody should be pressured to return to face-to-face meetings before they are comfortable doing so. We hope that by the spring every young person is able to take part in Scouting provision whether that be online or face-to-face.

In order to make it easier for Leaders to restart, we have simplified the guidance on equipment sharing and we have clarified how our adult supervision rules apply when operating multiple limited size groups close together. This can be found here.

Scout Network organised activity can be carried out in line with these updated guidelines, but adult only groups must continue to adhere to household rules that from 12 March 2021 will be a maximum of 4 adults from 2 households.

If Groups have had an amber risk assessment approved this will still be valid, but we’d encourage them to review their risk assessment before meeting again. There is no requirement to resubmit the risk assessment to Districts for approval unless they’re making a big change to the way they plan to operate. For those Groups who have not yet had an Amber risk assessment approved then this should be submitted to your District Commissioner before any face-to-face contact can take place. Make sure you've read all of the details about getting back together safely and protecting ourselves and others.

Please remember too, that all adults in your leadership team must have up-to-date training in Safety and Safeguarding, before they are permitted to participate in face-to-face meetings.

This news is welcome and is the first step in what we hope will be a gradual reintroduction to activities and I will continue to work with external organisations and our UK Team to make sure that we do everything to make the process as seamless as possible.

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Blog | Build a Snow Sculpture Competition
09/02/2021 By Website Admin
Open to all sections, from Beavers to Network across NEScouts.
Is it an igloo? Is it a plane? Is it a snowman? Well, be creative with your idea, build it and send in your picture for your chance to win some cool prizes as part of our NEScouts snow sculpture competition!
Leaders: We would also be delighted if this could count towards a badge with your section. Please let us know if you do!
How to enter:
1) Build an interesting snow sculpture and place a necker on it.
2) Take a photo and upload it via our form (it would be great to see the snow sculpture maker as well, but no problem either way!
3) Give the NEScouts Facebook, Instagram, or Twitter page a like or follow!
Entry Judging: Our panel of three from the #NEScouts team will vote and announce the winners on the 21st of February.
Prizes: There's £25, £15 and £10 Amazon Vouchers for first place, second and third place! (We can convert this to the same cash value for another provider like iTunes etc.
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