The Following is from a memo sent to all Council Commissioners and CED's in 2008
For many years Scouts Canada has successfully partnered with a variety of public safety agencies to provide Theme Based, or as it was previously know Vocational Venturering, opportunities for Canadian youth. A highly visible example of the success of these programs was the 80 MedVents that provided professional quality emergency medical service for us at CJ07.
From our experience we have come to realize that those groups who are most highly successful, some operating with crews and companies of 50 to 150 members, form a strong partnership and bring to bear the best elements of Scouting with the best elements of the public safety agency. In these instances both partners are fulfilling their mission, but more importantly the youth involved come out the winners. They get to experience first hand what a career might be like while developing skills and knowledge that will assist them throughout life regardless of their ultimate career decisions.
From Scouts Canada’s perspective, the Venturer Handbook and the Venturer Advisors Handbook and BP & Play the foundation for Theme Based programming. Perhaps not to surprisingly most of our partners are not well versed in our documentation and rely upon their own policies, procedures and governing laws when considering how the program should be administered and operated. A lack of clarity or decisions based upon assumptions can result in unforeseen risk should an unfortunate mishap occur.
In order to provide clarity some groups have created documents that layout protocol, procedure, training, administration and so. At the request of some of our current partners, as well as potential provincial and national partners, for a more formal agreement, and the desire of Scouts Canada to have a standard agreement, we have created a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) template for theme-based programs.
The MOU template as well as a PowerPoint presentation explanation is attached. You will note that the template allows some flexibility to define the program and the program aims. We anticipate that most of the theme based programs will fit within those described in the supplemental materials provided in the Venturer Handbooks. Should you encounter theme-based programs or activities (other than Sea Scouts) that are not referenced, the program or activities will need to be specifically listed in the MOU. CED’s or CC’s may wish to consult with Ian Mitchell prior to entering into agreements for programs outside of those listed. We are by no means discouraging you from providing theme-based programming beyond what is listed, we are however cautioning you to research the potential risks and liabilities before doing so.
An additional benefit of this process will be the identification of all our theme-based programs and groups. We encourage you to forward any materials or operational guides to Ian Mitchell. We will use these as examples to assist in the development of new theme based groups.
It is our expectation that Council’s working with the Groups will complete a Memorandum of Understanding for every theme based company or crew with their partners during this Scouting year
Should you have any questions or require additional information please do not hesitate to contact Ian Mitchell, Director Scouts, Venturers and Rovers.
The MOU Template and PowerPoint Presentation attached to the original memo can be obtained from Ian Mitchell at the National Office.