Never forget to invest in youth, it pays dividends!

Wood Badge holder Jill A Rainier-Pope lives in Newlands in Cape Town. She moved back to Cape Town in 1995 after living in Vereeniging for 30 years with her three sons and late husband of 55.5 years, Chris Rainier-Pope.  This is her Scouting story:

“I hail from Cape Town and was a Brownie and a Guide in Rondebosch. Guiding had made a great impression on me and thus I was always interested in young folk and the Baden Powell methods. I had been brought up with a father who was interested in everything and so as a family we had to join in all his activities, ranging from learning the names of the stars while being bitten by mosquitos and looking through the telescope to combing fields for mushrooms to identify, riding horses, going deep sea fishing off Simon’s Town, etc. There was never a dull moment!

I married a man of the same caliber. He was interested in everything and had a wonderful time teaching the lads and subsequently Scouts the botanical names of plants, taking them mountain climbing in the Drakensberg on a few occasions, participating in District events, etc.. When my eldest son became of age to attend Cubs, we entered him.  Parents were asked to attend a meeting where we were told that the Three Rivers Cub Pack was full, but that the property sported a Guide Hall as well as the Scout Hall and so it was proposed to start a second Pack. One of the mothers had helped with Cubs in Rhodesia (as it was called in those days), and ADC Cubs Stella Brune said she would assist to get the Pack going, but this meant adults were needed…  Thus, I joined. We had 4 Sixes and a grand time was had with District camps and many outings such as visits to Animal Welfare, a newspaper publisher, a car battery factory and SAA where the Cubs took over a large plane and got to sit in the pilot’s seat. We also got to watch a pilot training on the simulator. It was exciting for both the Cubs and the Adult Leaders!

My sons were also involved in the Movement. My eldest son achieved his Springbok, my middle son gave up after some years and my youngest carried on at school in Bloemfontein. He is currently involved in a Scout Troop in Rondebosch where his daughter is a Scout. He also volunteers for the Senior Scout Adventure.

I remember when I did the GSM/ D. Comm. Wood Badge course, there was a bank manager there who told me he could not believe what we were doing. His bank paid a small fortune to send staff on courses such as what we were experiencing. When I think of the value of the Wood Badge training on my life, I have found one of the most important items has been counselling. In my church, in my place of work and also many times needed in situations with friends and family, relating to young people, understanding how to speak to them and to show interest in their activities are important skills.

At my tender age I am no longer involved, however I was really delighted when my granddaughter recently invited me to be the guest of honour at her cooks badge evening dinner. After all my years in Scouting I believe that we should never forget to Invest in youth as it pays dividends! I also still wear my scarf and beads on BP Sunday to church.

Jill’s life motto is:

“I live by Biblical commandments as well as the Promise and Law. Once promised, it cannot be deleted as in computer language!”

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