GIRLS AND BOYS
Bruce Ward (wardb@AGRIC.NSW.GOV.AU)
Wed, 8 Feb 1995 09:20:38 +1100
I have been off the air for a while, taking a holiday after the Australian
Jamboree, so if I am covering old ground, my apologies.
I think Claudia has some good points about the differences between boys
and girls. BUT don't let us get too sterotypes, and make our youth
conform to our ideas of what they should need. Most girls have different
needs to boys, and they certainly develop at different rates, but there
are some girls who suit the Scout Program FAR better then the Girl Guide
program, at least here in Australia.
I run a Scout Troop with both boys and girls. My son is in my Troop (poor
boy), but my daughters are both in the guide movement. The oldest (a girl)
is definitely not suited to the Scout program, but fits in great with the
Guide approach. The younger daughter is a Brownie Guide, and fits in well
there. But she would fit in JUST AS WELL in the Cub program.
At the Australian Jamboree, for the first time since BP visited Australia
(they had a combined Jamboree then I think), 100 Guides participated in
our Jamboree on an equal basis. They were in mixed Troops, one I visited
having three patrols of Guides and three patrols of Scouts. The general
opinion seemed to be really positive, except from a few Guides I know who
were not able to go because their State Headquarters declined the
invitation (without asking the Troops of course!)
So I agree that there may need to be a different program designed to meet
the developmental needs of girls, but why do we need separate
administration, training resources etc etc etc. Don't we have different
programs within both movements to meet the needs of different age groups?
Why can't we have the girl's programs running within a united organisation?
I suspect the separation has more to do with long standing differences and
adult politics, power games and the like, but lets work towards a better,
perhaps united future.
I have been a bit long winded, but a closing point. If you accept my
proposition that some girls needs are better bet by the Scouting program,
are there any cases of the reverse, where a boys needs may be better met
by the girls program? Challenges a few concepts of masculinity but worth
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City