Top Award for Scout Leader
Roger Mitchell, who has been an adult volunteer in Scouts for 37 years, has been presented with the highest award in Scouting “for services of the most exceptional character”. Roger is Group Scout Leader in Cupar, and was presented with the Silver Wolf at a special Burns Supper held in Cupar Scout Hall. Guests included Cupar and North East Fife leaders, Cupar Explorers, the Cupar and North East Fife group executive committee, Alex Duncan and Callum Farquhar from East of Scotland region, and Roger’s family.
Roger has been an adult volunteer in Scouts since 1986 holding the role of Cub Scout Leader previously as his main role. Currently, he is the Group Scout Leader (GSL) at the 10th Fife (1st Cupar) Scout Group.
As a very experienced leader, Roger regularly attends all other sections to assist in the provision of the programme and the development of new leaders. In his main role of GSL, Roger has led the group through the Covid-19 pandemic effectively and has ensured the group was in a good position to bounce back from this difficult time. As GSL, Roger has also brought together a new group of parents to fill the roles of the group executive giving them effective leadership and direction.
Cupar is a relatively large group so his GSL role is time consuming. Roger dedicates many hours every week to help the group run effectively. In addition to his Cub pack duties, he is generally to be found at the Scout Hall undertaking maintenance and helping out in each section when there is a shortage of leaders. He also holds the roles of North East Fife district Duke of Edinburgh Awards advisor, district training advisor, district nights away advisor and holds a winter T2 hillwalking permit. Roger is picture below (centre) with Donald Jenks (right) leading Cupar Explorers on a recent winter walk near Glenshee.
North East Fife district commissioner Donald Jenks said Roger’s experience and good judgement is recognised by his whole team at Cupar and beyond, adding: “Roger has taken on the role of Group Scout Leader in addition to maintaining his links with the Cub Scout pack. In that role he has worked tirelessly to improve the amenity of the Scout Hall at Cupar. He has done a great deal of work to improve the common space outside the hall making it a useful area not only for Scouting activities but improving how it looks to the passing public.”
Donald adds: “Roger has a number of additional roles in Scouting dedicated largely to outdoor pursuits. In the last few years he has led in the region of 24 winter hill walks and at least as many Duke of Edinburgh expeditions over two, three and four days. Countless Explorers have completed their Duke of Edinburgh awards at bronze, silver and gold either through Roger’s direct involvement or through his support for Explorer leaders at Cupar, St. Andrews, Balmullo, Auchtermuchty and the East Neuk.”
Describing Roger as a “quiet unassuming character who quietly gets on with the job in hand”, Donald adds: “It is difficult to put a number on the hours that Roger spends providing and supporting scouting in Cupar and beyond but it would be equivalent to a full-time job. Roger will shortly celebrate his 75th birthday. At a time many would have been putting up their feet Roger’s continued commitment to Scouting is inspirational. His enthusiasm for Scouting in undiminished and he is still offering of his experience to younger leaders. As District Commissioner and a lifelong Scout, I can think of few who are more deserving of this award.”
Roger is also a member of the local choir and helps with Cupar in Bloom.
Feature image: Roger Mitchell (left) receives his Silver Wolf award from Callum Farquhar, Scouting’s Regional Commissioner for East Scotland.
Thanks for reading!