March 17, 2017
At YCIS Shanghai, supporting the community is an important part of the school’s philosophy and mission, and through various partnerships, the school is able to provide additional, extra-curricular programmes for YCIS children and families. One such example is the Boy Scouts of America programme, and this year, YCIS Shanghai has become the official Charter Organisation for the Boy Scouts of America in Puxi. As the Charter Organisation, the school provides equipment and supplies, as well as staff support for logistics and administration, and hosts weekly and monthly meetings for the Troop 12 Boy Scouts and the Pack 12 Cub Scouts.
On the weekend, the campus becomes a lively hub of activity for families with events for both groups. This year, among other things, the Boy Scouts have conducted a collection of toys for children in need called “Toys for Tots” in conjunction with the US Consulate, have earned a wide variety of merit badges, and have gone camping a number of times. According to Tony Ho, a YCIS parent and Assistant Scoutmaster, “It’s been wonderful to see the boys’ growth throughout the year as they have focused on the importance of serving others and their own personal development. As a parent, we appreciate that the Scouts helps to reinforce important values, helps the boys make great choices, and develops strong leadership skills. It’s been a fantastic experience at YCIS this year, and the Troop has quadrupled in size”!
The Pack 12 Cub Scouts group has also grown this year, nearly doubling to almost 100 boys, which is large in comparison to the average 30-member Pack in the US. The monthly Pack meetings on campus are exciting, fun learning experiences for the boys and their families. Starting in September, Pack Meetings have included the “Cub Scout Olympics”, “Cub Scouts Carnival”, “Cub Scouts STEM Challenge”, and recently, the boys participated in the annual “Pinewood Derby” event, wherein each Cub Scout, with the help of his parents, builds a small racing car made of wood. The Pinewood Derby is a traditional event for the Cub Scouts dating all the way back to 1953. As usual, the school opened up its facilities for the event, complete with a YCIS-sponsored purpose-built racing track imported from the U.S., music, and refreshments provided by local food vendors. Families got in on the fun by cheering on their Scout, and with many YCIS parents volunteering as Cub Scout Den Leaders and helping at the event, participating in Scouts truly involves the whole family.
The Pinewood Derby was followed up shortly thereafter with the Cub Scouts "Blue & Gold Banquet", which is an annual celebration of the founding of the Boy Scouts of America. This year, the Pack celebrated the 107th birthday of the organisation, with an evening event that featured a number of skits, a centrepiece contest, a buffet dinner and ice cream dessert bar, and a photo booth for fun family and Den photos. The evening culminated in a special honour for YCIS Shanghai, with a ceremony during which the Cubmaster and Pack Committee Chair officially presented the Charter to YCIS Shanghai.
According to Dr Richard Swann, Co-Principal at the school’s Gubei Campus, “The service learning and personal development opportunities that come with participating in the Boy Scouts and Cub Scouts are tremendously valuable for the boys’ future, and we couldn't be more thrilled about serving as the Charter Organisation”.
Families at YCIS can get involved in a variety of ways, including participating in activities such as the Boy Scouts of America. To learn more about the welcoming community at YCIS and about ways for parents to get involved, please click here.