It can be pretty hard to get a Crew set up. There often isn’t enough Rovers in your Group to really get stuck into Rovering. Even if there is enough for a Crew it is difficult to get going. You are Rovers now though so it’s up to you to make it work and get it going. A good Rover Advisor can help with the motivation of the Crew (but that’s a post for a different day).
In general Rover crews are quite different to the other small working groups in Scouting. Your crew doesn’t necessarily have to be linked to a scout group but could work at county, province or even national level. Maybe your crew was together in ventures but is now spread across the country but you still meet up and Rover together from time to time.
If you are in the unfortunate position that you only have a small few Rovers or indeed a lone Rover, start sending emails and see if there is a cohort of Rovers elsewhere in your county or province. You’re also welcome to drop us an email at Roverscouts@scouts.ie and we’ll see if we can put you touch with some other rovers.
Stay tuned thought, we have some exciting some new projects aimed to support lone Rovers and small crews in the works!
Meetings no longer need to be physical weekly meetings, open up Whatsapp or Skype and get the conversation flowing. This is how I do most of my planning and discussion on different projects, then all members of the Crew go off and get work done. The only time we’d meet up at times is on the weekend the project physically takes place.
Getting out there
Whether you have a Crew or you want to start a new one, motivation is a bit of an issue. Start with a small project that’s easy to organise (ie doesn’t need a bus and trailer full of gear to travel 200 miles away), within a short period and make it work. Do the same two or three times mixing it up with different activities/projects. The Crew will then get used to how things work in the Crew life and gain an awful lot of enthusiasm for the next project.
Open up that group chat and get a plan together. We recommend that your first activity is a simple overnight (camping/hostel/scout den). The latter two being easier to organize. We recommend overnight because they give your crew the best chance to bond. It was those horrible nights stuffed into a Icelandic tent in Scout when we made our best friendships.
A sample itinerary would be:
Saturday afternoon: Meet up at den/hostel/campsite.
Saturday afternoon: Do some easy activity (Go to the movies/paint ball/ ice skating etc)
Saturday evening: Head back to your accommodation and have some dinner
Saturday evening: Bring a few broad games, ice breakers etc.
Sunday morning: Breakfast, review, arrange a date for next time,
Goodbye and hugs.
A Rover crew doesn’t need to be mothered anymore. People can arrange their own transport and food the weekend if they want. The most important point is that the crew is hanging out together, hopefully already planning the next bigger and better project.
Our best advice is keep it simple for your first activity, Rovers together will always find some way to have the craic.
The next steps
Motivation is like a flowing river, sometimes it’s strong and other times its weak. Don’t let the motivation die after your first activity. Try and regular schedule for crew activities, once a month or something and stick to it. Don’t expect everyone to attend everything either!
A little word on numbers
Get used to small crews, don’t be surprised if your first hosteling weekend is no more then a car full of people. Rovering is still a growing section. Speaking from experience I can confidently tell you that it gets better, the first few times are going to be hard. Once people start to hear that you’re doing something regular they’ll make more of an effort to join in.
Some final words
Getting a Crew up on its feet takes a bit of patience and a lot of work, but it’s worth it. In the jumbled mess that is your life now Rovers can offer you an excuse to get out, start living life and making a difference.
Some resources to help you along the way