Explorer Scouts are young people, usually aged between 14 and 18 years old. They make up the fourth section of the Scouting family after Beavers, Cubs and Scouts. Our Explorer Unit meets weekly, and sometimes teams up with with other Units in Barnsley District, so we can take part in an even wider spectrum of activities.
Explorers work on the Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme alongside equivalent Scout Association Awards, giving them ample opportunity to demonstrate their proficiencies and expand their interests.
Ardsley is an Explorer Air Scout Unit - we do everything that 'normal' Explorers do, plus the occasional air activity.
There are three challenge awards for Explorers, the Chief Scout's Diamond and Platinum Awards, and the Queen's Scout Award - the highest award in Scouting. The Award requirements are closely aligned with the Duke of Edinburgh Award Scheme.
Explorers are encouraged to take an active part in running the Unit and planning the programme. There's very little we can't do by way of activities; anything is possible, from abseiling to zorbing.
You can do the Duke of Edinburgh Award at 3 levels, Bronze, Silver and Gold. You achieve your Award by completing a personal programme of activities in four sections (five if you're going for Gold). You can start your Bronze Award at age 14.
You can join Explorers (or transfer up from Scouts) at 14 years old. It doesn't matter if you've never been in Scouting before.
Each year, at the start of the summer holidays, we run a week-long camp. This year we enjoyed a glorious week at Ferny Crofts Scout Activity Centre in the New Forest.
Highlights of the week included Pony Trekking, Mountain Biking, Archery, Zip Wire, and days out at Beaulieu motor Museum, the New Forest Show, and Boscombe beach in Bournemouth.
In March 2014 a team of five Explorers from Ardsley took part in the Barnsley Night Challenge, an overnight incident hike organised by the Silverwood Active Support unit. The teams had to navigate a 6 mile course, completing a series of challenges along the route.
Our Explorer team completed the event around 3am, having collected a total of 556 points, enough to make them the overall winners of the competition.
This is us last October, carrying out a conservation project with the park rangers in the Peak District National Park. Over a weekend we cut back trees obstructing footpaths and cleared an area of overgrown hazel.
On a previous conservation weekend in April we helped to improve the drainage along a mile-long stretch of the Pennine Way near Glossop. We have two further conservation weekends planned for 2014.
Check out the requirements for the Queen's Scout Award here
Find out about the Bronze, Silver and Gold Duke of Edinburgh's Awards
Find out about Service opportunities in other Scouting sections.
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