Last week I was lucky enough to attend the Asia Pacific Region’s annual workshop on marketing and communications. It was a great opportunity to meet other keen Scouts from around the region, and to discuss how we can help to achieve the goal of growing Scouting from 40 million members to 100 million by 2023!
How to make Scouting sexy was the (somewhat controversial) question asked to us by Mr Ong Hock Chuan, a former journalist and PR and communications expert. He reminded us that young people hold the key to it all. He also told us about some truly innovative social media campaigns. Have you ever heard of banana trophies? Check out Dole Banana’s campaign to see some really outside the box thinking!
One of my favourite sessions in the workshop was on crisis management. We had to work in teams and act as spokespeople for a made up crisis occurring at a local jamboree. It started off as a bridge collapse, and throughout the course of the afternoon escalated into a situation involving terrorism! Maybe not the most likely situation but definitely a great learning experience.
All in all the conference left me with a lot to think about – imagine if Scouting in Australia was an important part of schooling (like it is in Indonesia), or if it was featured 2-3 times per week in the media (which happens in Sri Lanka), could we have a celebrity spokesperson to represent Scouts (also in Indonesia)?
It was a great four days of networking, learning about Scouting around the Asia-Pacific region, and learning about the host country Indonesia. And don’t forget, if you haven’t already, create your profile on scout.org to join our permanent Jamboree!
Leah Gibson is a volunteer with the Marketing and Communications Team in Scouts Victoria, coordinating the peer-to-peer media program, and is also a Venturer Leader.