SCOUTS CANADA - Scouter Jim Hicks opens a family camp fire over the summer. The local troupe has seem immense growth over the past five years.

SCOUTS CANADA - Scouter Jim Hicks opens a family camp fire over the summer. The local troupe has seem immense growth over the past five years.

1st Sylvan Lake Scouts, Beavers and Cubs see tremendous growth in 2016

Local Cub, Beaver and Scout troupes were seen going door to door in Sylvan Lake recently in support of the Sylvan Lake Food Bank.

Local Cub, Beaver and Scout troupes were seen going door to door in Sylvan Lake recently in support of the Sylvan Lake Food Bank.

The annual troupe food drive has collected hundreds of pounds of food for the local organization over past years and Michelle O’Connor, 1st Sylvan Lake Scouts Group Commissioner, explained this year was no different. O’Connor explained that not only is the food drive an outstanding way to help the Food Bank, it also teaches the young men and women in the organization how to think about others.

“Even though our kids may have lots of food on the table, the food drive reminds them that there are many people including kids their own age, especially in this economy right now, who might not have enough to eat,” said O’Connor. “The kids were excited to have filled their wagons with food and were happy to be out that night.”

Each year the club participates in a number of community based fundraisers and activities including their popcorn sale, a bottle drive and the annual Lake Shore Clean Up. This year’s clean up for the group at Gull Lake where they collected 50 lbs. of garbage and

O’Connor explained 2016 has been a big year for the local group as they were able to have a Scouts aged troupe for the first time in a number of years.

“We had one scout here and there that would usually go to Red Deer,” said O’Connor. “Now we have ten scouts and they have been great in the revitalization of the troupe.”

The local troupe currently consists of 10 scouts, 12 Cubs and 40 Beavers.

“We try to run a really strong program,” said O’Connor on the groups increase of memberships over the last few years. “Over the last five years we’ve been able to attract a strong volunteer base to help us with organization. We’re getting out there through word of mouth and people are seeing that we are an affordable option to engage young people.”

Due to the high increase in membership this year she explained they’ve been able to venture even further into the community and have even struck a partnership with the local Lion’s Club which sees the young men and women of the Scouts volunteering to do dishes once a month at Lion’s Hall.

The Beavers do an annual trip to the Bethany Centre and all three groups will be involved with upcoming Remembrance Day ceremonies.

“I think Scouts, Beavers and Cubs teaches young people to have global perspective,” said O’Connor. “It teaches kids to love and respect the outdoors while also giving back to their community.”

In addition to a number of exciting field and camping trips throughout the year Scouts, Cubs and Beavers O’Connor added the organization teaches youth applicable real world skills with an emphasis on teaching both ‘Duty To Others’ and “Duty To Self’.

For more information on the local Scout, Cubs and Beavers contact Michelle O’Connor at 403

editor@sylvanlakenews.com