Improving the Volunteer Experience

You may have heard about the national Scout Conference, Basecamp 22, held in Manchester during May 2022 and national discussions about plans for upcoming developments in Scouting. You may even have taken part in the online consultation on one of the website feedback 'testing hubs'. We are very excited about the changes that are going to be made in Improving Our Volunteer Experience. This is a major project for us in Durham Scouts and so we have appointed a Transformation Lead, Greg Piskosz, who will lead and support us all as we work through and implement change. Greg is a long serving and experienced Leader, currently District Commissioner for Chester le Street and has been involved in many of the HQ project workshops that have helped to shape the developments. We're going to keep everyone fully updated in our County eNews and also on this specific webpage.

August 2022
The HQ emails and conversations at County events will have increased awareness of the planned changes to improve The Volunteer Journey.

Last month we described the Four Phases of the Transformation Project, and said that we were in the Understanding Phase and were briefing key stake holders. These briefings are continuing. When the time is right we will be sharing more detailed information with all members of the County.

In line with our Confido Theme and as a trailer to the Feature Film… Put simply, the changes can be described in four themes:

1. A warmer welcome for everyone – meaning change in two areas:
a. A better on-line experience for prospective adult volunteers
b. Ending of the Appointments Approval Committee process and a new more local, personal approach to welcoming new volunteers.

2. New roles and structures to simplify how we volunteer - meaning how we volunteer, together with new roles and structures – meaning a change:
a. To role titles and
b. How a section looks in who does what, giving the opportunity to use all our talents and resources to their best effect.

3. A more engaging learning experience – meaning simplifying training, having an amount of core learning that everyone does and with the full Wood Badge available but optional.

4. More support to help get everyday things done: digital transformation – meaning a brand new membership system… not a tweaking of Compass,

Change can be difficult and we understand that some will not find it pleasant, but we are committed to improving our volunteers’ Scouting experience, and are certain that this Transformation Project will deliver that. In coming months we will feature each of these four themes in more detail.


July 2022
Things are progressing well with the Project nationally and locally. The first meeting of Transformation Leads has taken place, to get all at the same place, and our Transformation Lead, Greg, continues to take part in HQ workshops to shape the future.

We will be approaching the Transformation Project in 4 phases : Understanding the Change, Planning the Change, Delivering the Change and Keeping things going.

We are currently in the first phase, where briefings for all stakeholders across the County are being carried out; what we hope to achieve and how we will go about it. To date we have briefed the County Executive Committee and also your District Commissioners. We are now following this up with Local Briefings for Group Scout Leaders and Exec Committees and the County Team. Three districts are already in the diary for their briefings, with more to follow. We will also be offering a Zoom call for any of those groups that have been briefed but have been unable to make a face to face session. In addition high level information has been sent out by HQ in a recent All Members email.