Becoming a Young Trainer - by Alice

Alice is a Young Trainer in Woodcraft Folk. Here's how it happened:

My Woodcraft background

I've grown up with woodcraft as a strong part of my life. In the past I've attended regional camps, international camps, protests against pretty much everything, played fiddle at Hamsterly's 10th birthday (such a long time ago now!), hostel weekends and bivvis. During uni I drifted away from woodcraft temporarily. But after volunteering in India for 10 weeks, I realised that global issues, helping others and all the Woodcraft morals are still really close to my heart. So I'm now an Elfin and Pioneer leader, running local group nights and providing experiences that I had growing up as a child with Woodcraft.

What made you think about doing the Young Trainer training?

I've always had an interest in empowering young people and youth participation. I felt that Young Trainer training would equip me with the skills to get more heavily involved in Woodcraft beyond my district in the North East. It seemed like a very good stepping stone onto further development. I'm also applying to do an MA in Youth work, so young trainers has been a massive help in the youth work application process. I also hoped to make friends and meet new people.

What did you get from the training?

New ideas and skills. It was also a very enjoyable weekend and I felt like iId achieved a great deal. Young Trainers also gave me the opportunity to be involved in the youth participation weekend at Lockerbrook, which has been one of my most enjoyable residentials yet! I learned that silliness and taking things out of the box is one of the best ways to deliver training!

What have you done as a Young Trainer?

At the Lockerbrook practice-sharing weekend I delivered training on the A-Z of a Good Discussions. I also managed to bring jaffa cakes into the training! In the future I hope to attend more weekends and expand my training skills as far and wide as possible. Seeing people’s reactions at the end of a training session is probably the best part of being a Young Trainer.

Any advice for other young Woodcraft Folk who want to take on a new role?

I think that whatever project you're going to take on, whether big or small, go in with a blank canvas because it can be or become anything you want it to be. Taking on new roles can at times be fun, rewarding but also hard work. When I was in India I found this out the hard way, but then realised that I was there for the children I was teaching and this became my main focus for the 10 weeks.

I'm not saying you need to travel half way across the world to develop new skills - there’s always a lot of opportunities much closer to home. I think that becoming a Young Trainer opens doors to more opportunities. You should go into any new project with a lot of enthusiasm to give, but also the need to learn new things that you don't quite understand yet. The two combined and a determination to help others will make you a fantastic Young Trainer.