16th WA Canning Vale 2019 Report

Boys’ and Girls’ Brigade run concurrently on Monday evenings (5pm – 7pm) at the Community Centre in Canning Vale.

The boys and girls do separate activities but come together for a light meal each night.

A new initiative that we tried this year was to have a Mums’ night and a Dads’ night.
During these events, boys and girls brought a parent (or other relative) to participate in a special night of activities, games, competitions and a meal. Both events were well attended and provided a good opportunity for families to see what the children do at brigades and for us to get to know the families better. It also provided an opportunity for the older children to gain experience in planning and running events. We will plan to have more of these in the future.

Some of the Senior boys stopped brigades in 2019 to focus on their studies (in upper high school). This seems to be a common trend and significantly reduced the size of the Senior group this year. One of the Senior boys came back as a helper/leader which is encouraging to see. There are also 6 Junior boys who are due to start Seniors next year. This will bring the Senior boys group back up to the 2018 number.

It is sometimes difficult to plan activities for Seniors because the numbers vary considerably (typically due to study commitments). This also affects their willingness to attend leadership training events. The younger boys are less interested in weekend events if their older friends are not going (eg due to sport or study commitments). It also seems to be more difficult to motivate boys to put in the work required to earn badges and awards. The social aspect seems to have more influence than any awards that may be on offer (particularly if they involve written assignments).
A few leaders are not able to continue next year which will leave a gap that needs to be filled. We are hoping and praying that God will raise up new leaders to fill the gap.
Peter Kuilenburg