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What a Cub Scout needs from their Leader


A friend of mine is about to change roles in Scouting from working with Beavers (6-8 year olds) to working with Cubs (8-10 year olds).   

She’s nervous about making the shift and asked for some advice.  

This is what I wrote to her:

What would you want from your Leader if you were a Cub?    I know what I’d want.  And what I’d need. 

  • Someone who will be completely fair and consistent in insisting that games and activities are run completely to the agreed rules.
  • Someone who cares about me and my friends, has no favourites and has the highest expectations of me.
  • Someone who isn’t afraid to say “I don’t know” – but who’s prepared to find out new things and help me to do the same.
  • Someone who has integrity, with whom I know I will be safe, who won’t try to be something they’re not.
  • Someone who encourages and makes use of my friends’ and my ideas, but also has ideas of their own – that help to stretch my experience and encourage me to grow – physically, intellectually, spiritually and socially.
  • Someone who sets boundaries, explains why they’re setting them and then rigorously insists on those boundaries being respected.
  • Someone who isn’t afraid to tell me and others off when we’re naughty – and when we inevitably transgress those boundaries, but who always strives to praise and encourage us.
  • Someone who relishes life’s adventures, recognises that everyone gets nervous and uses their personality to help the loudest and the most nervous to recognise each other’s qualities.
  • Someone who lives by their Promise – whatever version they choose.
  • Someone who wants to leave this world a little better than when they found it.
  • “This above all: to thine own self be true, And it must follow, as the night the day, Thou canst not then be false to any man.”

Facebook Comments


  1. CJ CJ

    Mr May, you have such a wonderful way with words. I wish we could clone you so that every District could have one of you to inspire people!

  2. I still remember your talk about cotton wool parenting.. Keep up the inspirational advice..

  3. Great post. Could I translate it on spanish and publish it on our blog La Roca del Consejo? I’m sure many spanishspoken scouts leaders will feel identified to your words.

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