United Kingdom

Uganda Network

Families and Friends

''''Children have the right to be with their family or with those who will care for them best''

Being part of a family is something most of us take for granted. Whether the family just involves one other person or is a extended family of uncles, aunts, grandparents and so on doesn't really matter. The important thing is that we know there is someone who really cares about us and our welfare.

It's all very well talking about being part of a family, but sometimes being reminded of it sounds more like a judge passing sentence than a helpful comment. This can be particularly true for young people in the Scout age range



An extension of this is the Scouting family. When someone is invested, we welcome them by reminding them that 'You are now a Member of the world wide family of Scouts'

These activities let Scouts explore the importance of families in our own society, and then consider the role the family plays in Ugandan society.

You may feel that these activities are particularly useful for supporting.

The Explorer and Chief Scout's Awards. But they also serve to support the community and commitment parts of the earlier awards.


United Kingdom
Total population  57.2 million 18.8 million
Annual number of births  786,000  985,000
Life expectancy  76  52
Secondary education  100%  25%
Number of T.V. sets per
1000 population
 435  6
Number of radios per
1000 population
 1146  99

Note the population of Uganda is now believed to be over 21m according to the Department of Poulation and Census

Know your Spuds(15k)

Programme ideas

1. Know Your Potato

This game is unusual, good fun and helps everyone realise that all living things are different and unique and that this applies to human beings too.

Every member of the Unit needs to have a potato. Get to know your potato and describe it to the other members of the Unit for instance size, shape, dimples and so on.

Put your potato back into the middle of the circle and mix them up. Close your eyes and search for your potato. As well as helping you with observation and description, this activity can be used as a starter to discuss everyone's individuality

As we are all unique, we all have different skills and strengths. A typical group of people consists of five or six individuals and is characterised by its strengths, skills and individual personalities. It is amongst our families and friends that we can test out our skills and learn of our strengths.

This activity also shows that despite all the differences of each potato, it is only when several are cooked together

2. Skills on Show

Ask each Patrol to use their imagination and think of a means of communicating the skills and strengths within the Patrol. This could be a radio broadcast, a short video film, a poster or a mime. It is important that the Patrol Leaders make sure that everyone is included.

Scouting is a family with over 16 million Members world wide. In Scouting we all make our Promise and do our very best to live up to our Promise. It is important for Scouts to realise that Scouting crosses many of the barriers that divide people; age, social class, colour, culture, religion and nationality. When undertaking the activities on Scouting in Uganda it would be helpful to emphasise the similarities rather than dwell on the differences.

The Scouts should be aware that young people in Uganda join Scouting for many of the same reasons that they do, to enjoy the fun and in Uganda older children and Scouts are often involved in child care because mothers are working in the fields or have to fetch water. In the United Kingdom many families consist of two children who are close in age so young people of Scout age often have little or no experience of looking after younger brothers and sisters.

3. The Young Ones

Ask the Patrol Leaders to look at providing a range of activities which would give all the Scouts an opportunity to work with young children. The activities, under adult guidance, could range from working with the Beaver Scout Colony for a period, to spending time helping neighbours or family friends with their children or helping with creche facilities at a place of worship or Scouting event.

After this service the Scouts could share their experiences and tell the other members of the Patrol:

  • What they enjoyed most.
  • What they found most difficult.
  • What they found most surprising.

Identify opportunities they would like to follow up.

Young people in the Scout Troop are beginning to make decisions on their future. Participating in decision making in Scouting is part of this process. The next activity helps young people to think about their future and what responsibility they have to make their dreams come true.

4. Lifeline

Ask each of the Scouts to draw a lifeline and include important steps in their life so far and what they would like in the future

This is both done with pairs of Scouts who are the same age

Ask them to identify one or two of their goals or ambitions and identify the steps required to achieve these goals

5.Who Needs Friends?

Patrols are groups of friends who do activities together. This is an activity to help Scouts look at what friendship is and identify these characteristics in their friends in the Patrol

Using the cards with the following characteristics. Each Patrol is given a set of cards and then each person takes a card reads it, gives it to an appropriate member of Patrol without speaking. Once all the cards are distributed, each Scout takes it in turn to read out the cards which describe their characteristics.

Again it is useful to explain this activity to the Patrol Leaders and ask them to make sure everyone receives a card.

Contact the Uganda Network Copyright © The UK Uganda Network - 2002
Last modified 6 January 2004


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