"- Russian Gilwell? Is it possible?
- DA, sir, absolutely..."
(from dialog of British and Russian Scoutmasters)
For years of revival of Russian scouting (since 1989) we have seen a lot of scepticizm from our foreign scout' partners concern adoptation of the classic scheme of Scouters' training course calles as Wood Badge or Gilwell course. Since 1996 we practice Gilwell scheme in Russia among Russian Union of Scouts leaders and have seen (and sure) how it is effective!!!
BUT. Last year Wood Badge showed that some Russian scout leaders not ready to be learned!!! We have rest just 2 scouters (in beginning of the last year course group consist 11!!! scouters). It is very pitty and the same time very good example - we need to work hard and long time! Recognition of ARNSO by WOSM as only National Scouts Organization of Russia confirmed our experience collected for last 5 years.
At the moment me as National Training commissioner - and my good and old freinds scoutmasters - Max Vorobiev and Igor Borganov will try to use Wood Badge scheme for all ARNSO leaders. We will start on Moscow' region courses with National status (October 13-14'2001) in Egorjevsk, Moscow region.Than in January training course in Nizhny Novgorod.
We planned to have a big training course in Siberia (Omsk) Febr. 2002.
During National Jamboree Vetluga'2002 we plan to have WB reunion and as parallel camp and even separate event Russian INDABA (forgotten scoutmasters camp which were popular in 60-th).
WE WILL APPRECIATE YOUR ADVISES AND PARTICIPATION IN OUR COURSES, IF YOU WILL BE ABLE PROVIDE SOME MATERIAL SUPPORT (WOGGLES, McLAREN SCARFS etc.) IT WILL BE GREAT DONATIONS TO OUR REVIVAL MOVEMENT!!!
Any case you can contact me for more information.
Yours in Scouting, Slava E. Chernykh, scoutmaster, ARNSO Training Commisioner
Gilwell course ę Wood Badge Ľ. Training course
The scout leaders of different levels - as though they were not named - instructor, scoutmasters - are the people, without daily and voluntary activity of which will cease to exist scoutís motion, without which will be interrupted almost centenary scoutís tradition, without which care will not do anything even most reckless scouts.
To be scout leaders - to understand, that your guys will be similar in everything to you, sometimes even outwardly is a large responsibility.
The first stage - junior instructor, it is possible to become him per 16 years, under the guideline of the experimental chiefs - scoutmasters, having given Instructor Promising, having tied a crimson tie. This is preceded with some introduction courses, on which the main fundamentals of activity and cooperation of the chief with scouts are comprehended. Without kindness and paternal insistence, training and cheerful customs, mother attitude and brotherly friendship to scouts, it is impossible to be the instructor.
For Akella - the chief of junior scouts the own parent experience is completely irreplaceable, but his / her assistants can be and junior instructors.
From month per month, from year to year instructor should find out more new of scoutís life, traditions, pedagogical fundamentals of scoutís Method; to think out new (or to recall forgotten old?) games, training for scouts etc.
" The Instructor Corps " of Russian Union of Scouts, which member can become any scout leaders, helps in activity of scoutís volunteers by methodical techniques and advices. Carries out regular seminars and trainings. There is no such task, which we could not decide together with hundreds chiefs from I.C.
It is traditionally considered, that the person who works with scouts is named scoutmaster, it goes from times of B-P, when the adult person became a scoutmaster "on - duty" starting to work with children. The traditions Russian scouting differ from English and "scoutmaster" is the rank, instead of position.
Any rank - from scout of the first class up to the instructor can be received from the senior scoutís chief after passing training courses appropriate to this level.
In scouting it is very much frequent that solutions are received subjectively, you see that only formal fulfilment of the necessary requirements is not enough, the senior scoutís chief always accepts responsibility for making decision. So, the scoutmaster can assign a rank of the junior instructor to a scout who was only 16 years, knowing, that it is necessary to do it right now for supporting motivation of this young man in scouting and seeing his perspectives. So the responsibility is born which bears the scoutmaster.
In the already folded system of scoutís interorganizational activity the self-proclamation of the certain chief a scoutmaster is impossible. But there still meet so independent scoutís troops and their leaders, that there is an impression, that they are independent and of sensible mind, and from B-P with Oleg Ivanovich Pantukhoff (Founder of Russian Scouting), and frequently they did not hear anything about them. Can you imagine how funny looks such "scoutmaster" with his own system of categories on a method of pirate Silver, with scoutís lilies by the way of Cheopsís pyramids etc. The grabbing of ďnear-to-scoutsĒ terminology and self-confidence, sincere conviction, that scouting is invented by him ( have you already recognise somebody?).
To 1991-93 years under the initiative of the World Scout Bureau number of Russian children's leaders were engaged in different time for 4-5 days in England, where they lived in Gilwell park. Therefrom they went by excursion, acquainted with life of English scouts, having returned in Russia some of them sincerely trusted, that have finished the Gilwell course (meaning Wood Badge). Much to our regret, there nobody has explained to them in what difference of 3 day time courses for patrol leader, fact-finding introduction seminar " to the guys about animals" and a year and a half-two year courses Wood Badge on Gilwell method. To this day in some foreign scoutís organizations attempting to assist in development ours scoutís of squads there is a sincere opinion, that Russian scouts (we with you) need to be taught correctly to use a map of the Munich area, gas cooker and chain-saw in the camp, correctly to knot a reef unit and precisely to say "GuudmoRning".
Probably they donít know, that the majority of the present scoutís chiefs have an experience of a service in special army forces behind their back, almost ďprofessionalĒ woodcraft experience with real survival, that the construction of sauna in a camp for a long time has ceased to be exotic activitity, and the dialogue on one or several foreign languages is ordinary for the majority of scouts and leaders.
The visitants scout instructors can only try to transmit to us spirit of scouting and world-wide scoutís brotherhood, those ten years' scoutís tradition, which, on - will of destiny, Russia was dispossessed. And to do it is better without false smiles and mentorís tone, and in really scoutís, brotherly - benevolent conditions.
So under the proposal of B-P Association of scouts of Great Britain in 1994 there was conducted a classical Gilwell course Wood Badge in Russia. The trainee (we call them courseíants) were leaders from Russian Union of Scouts and őRUR, one of Federation of Scouts of Crimea. Successfully have finished the first stage of a course and have received leather woggle - a clamp of the special form - 12 leaders. Have completed a course 5 courseíants from RUS and one of ORUR; the solution of Advice RUS and training commissioner to them assigns a rank "scoutmaster". By rest, on what that is granted to reasons not graduating the right at any time, as agreed with the training commissioner RUS to try to complete it.
The history of derivation of Gilwell course is very interesting and indicative. The explosion-imaged development of the global scouting in the beginning of century has pushed B-P to development of a special training technique and scheme permitting to make of income of competent scoutís chiefs in motion constant and qualitative. The ending of the First World War has made hundreds of operational scoutís leaders and beginners to search for ways of perfecting of Scout Method, itís adaptation to the new global order. Scoutís newspapers and the brochures did not manage this function. There was also other reason -many of the talented people engaging one business - always threatens to that the idea will be either is misinterpreted or is transformed up to unrecognizability. Not to suppress creativity and initiative of scoutís chiefs B-P has decided to define frameworks of this probable transformation, those boundaries, where scouting terminates and something starts other.
In 1919 one of the old friends of B-P W.F.de Bois Maclaren gave scouts a manor Gilwell Park near London, for usage as a place for camps and training courses of the The Scout Association.
September 8, 1919 by a draft sharp sound of a horn of Big Kudu (one of largest antelope of Africa) B-P is started with the first course for scoutmasters of Wood Badge. Upon termination of a course the graduates have received beads of a hard tree from an ancient necklace of the Zulu leaders extracted by B-P in 1888 as a trophy in Africa. Later together with beads of scoutmaster they started receiving a sand-pink tie with a tartar in a corner - cell-like stripe of colours of Scottish clan of Maclaren in the sign of the recognition and memory of his gift to all scouts. In 1929 B-P becomes a peer - member of the Chamber of Lords (a knight title he has received in 1909 from the King Edward VII) and choose a title of Lord Baden-Powell of Gilwell.
According to "scoutís legend", it is considered, that to the end of his life B-P had six beads and such quantity can not be for any scoutmaster.
In 1920 B-P published a special manual determining of the technology and a technique of realisation of courses and their ideological fulfilment "Aids to scoutmastership ". At the same time the large place in the book is given to the requirements advanced to activity of scoutmaster and his activity with scoutís squad.
With year after year, to the death in 1941 B-P considerably has improved the scheme of a course. At the present moment it is represented enough unified at the world, but has the certain different approaches in a degree of rigidity, age of the cadets, conformity to national differences and traditions. But the main task of B-P - creation of an international course and peculiar club of the people adequate for quality of scouting, conformity to its initial "recipe" and idea - was reached.
B-P has defined the tasks of a Wood Bagde course, as nonseparable connection of its three parts:
The scoutmaster being a Training Commissioner that we have named as the training commissioner in the organization has the right to conduct a course. Only scoutmasters help him, already past course earlier - is not admitted presence at a training command of other scout leaders.
The classical scheme of realisation of a course is simple:
The course reputes an extreme readiness of the trainee - the participant of courses to a meeting the requirements of the trainer - scoutmaster, the chief of courses.
Some stages of a course can show strange and not pedagogical from the "school-teachers" point of view, but we spend a real Wood Badge in its classical type. You see having thought up the Wood Badge Baden-Powell put before himself the task not only the selection of the best leaders, preservation of Scout Method, but also its creative addition, creation of international club of scoutmasters - "savers" of Scout Method and traditions from year to year, from one decade per one decade. That is why course is conducted only by experienced scoutmasters-trainers.
Scoutmaster - maximum stage of the chiefís "ladder". As against the junior instructor (crimson tie), the instructor and scoutmasters have a green tie. The rank "scoutmaster" is assigned by the solution of Advice of organization, the instructor become under the solution of scoutmaster, working with the given squad or group.
The scoutmaster is engaged more in organizational and training-preparatory activity, but perfectly possesses skills and methods of activity with any age group of scouts, can conduct occupations on many specialities, has finished some specialized training courses, " the Wood Badge" is preferable. Additional scoutís trainings and seminars, such as, " PR in Scouting", " Formation of publicity", "Fundrising" are conducted as required for scoutís chiefs with the experience.
It is necessary to know, that modern beads are not made of that rare African tree, and are played back the diplomatic copies those first from beech or yew-tree. Units of the very first beads can be seen in scoutís museum of Gilwell Park, Copenhagen.
In Russia the First course of 1994 the most experienced scoutmaster conducted, having five beads, Ivan Brentnall, training commissioner of B-P scouts of Great Britain. Now training commissioner having the right to conduct a course " on two beads " is your humble servant having three - on one are more than the level of a training, spent by him.
If you feel in yourselves determination to pass Russian Gilwell course and to become a part of a National training team of Russia, if you are off-the shelf to benevolent friendly insistence of other scoutmasters, already graduating, if you are off-the shelf to failure, but are customized on victory - send your application forms for participation in the answer we shall send you more in-depth conditions of passing of a course.
Training Commissioner of Russian Union of Scouts and All-Russian National Scout Organisation
Slava E. Chernykh