#BB15for2015 – Trivia question number four!

Below is the latest question in Fifteen for 2015’s Trivia section.  You can still join up by registering here!number-4-2

Over the last week, we have been paying tribute and giving thanks for Sir William Smith, founder of The Boys’ Brigade.  In which town was he born? 

Keep a note of your answers for the final submission of your challenge at the end of the year!

If you’ve got any questions, please email 15for2015@boys-brigade.org.uk

#BB15for2015 – Question 2

As part of of our new national challenge, Fifteen for 2015, please see question two below:question 2

In the past two years, BB Scotland has run two Giant Sleepovers involving over 800 Junior Section members at which Glasgow attraction?

Keep a note of your answers for the final submission of your challenge at the end of the year!

If you’ve got any questions, please email 15for2015@boys-brigade.org.uk

‘The best week of my life!’ And this is from a member of staff?!

BB Scottish HQ’s Training & Development Officer, Alan Hunter, oversees the training delivered across the organisation in Scotland and even finds time to coordinate some of The BB’s biggest national events too!

But, for a couple of weeks each summer, his focus is firmly on supporting BB young leaders, aged 17 to 22, in the KGVI Youth Leadership course.  The residential training experience is like no other the organisation offers and equips BB young people with the tools, skills and attitudes to be effective BB leaders, which takes place at the National Training and Recreation centre at Carronvale House.

Once he finally caught his breath from the seven days and six sleepless nights, Alan reflected on yet another frantic, but rewarding week of KGVI!

Alan Hunter, Training & Development Officer

Alan Hunter, Training & Development Officer

‪#‎KGVI60 complete…and now I have that weird mixture of sad and happy all rolled into one! And then I remember that wonderful quote, ‘Don’t cry because it’s over, smile because it happened’.

What an amazing week, shared with another excellent bunch of lads, who each brought their own individuality to the course, but gelled very quickly into strong team. But what makes KGVI any different from something like Queen’s Badge? I suppose it’s the fact that the participants are all there because they want to be, they have chosen that path, to complete training and become officers…in their words, ‘giving something back’ for the positive experience they have received, rather than perhaps just ticking a box.

And then there’s the staff team, what can I say, a great bunch that I am proud, not to call colleagues, but good friends. Like the Cadets, a group of individuals, who come together to produce an awesome team. I always say that KGVI is the profit sharing of my job. Would I change all the work that’s required before and after? Not a bit of it, it’s a great privilege being part of the team, but even moreso being able to put that team together. Do I always get it right? No, not always, but I reckon the two teams this year were spot on.

Rt Rev Dr Angus Morrison, Moderator CofS General Assembly, spent time with Cadets

Rt Rev Dr Angus Morrison, Moderator CofS General Assembly, spent time with Cadets

60 years on and whilst I don’t know what the early years were like (before anyone suggests I was there) I am fairly certain that the ethos and impact of the KGVI experience is still the same. The packaging and content may have changed, keeping it fresh and fit for purpose, but the foundations are still intact. Society tells us that young people don’t do Christian Faith…oh I think you should think again society…it’s certainly alive and well in KGVI. For me, The Lord’s my Shepherd last Wednesday evening is a memory that will last forever. The power and feeling behind those words, which have supported many people over the years, was breath taking and the only word I could use to describe it was…WOW!

I’m often asked, “Which KGVI course was the best?” And that one is easy to answer, it’s the one that you were involved with. Each course brings with it a new bunch of Cadets and a fresh staff team. For the last few years I have been the only constant and whilst that might sound unexciting, it isn’t because I get to be part of the KGVI experience for the first time, with each new group that comes along. Each course will have its highs and lows, the tears and the laughter, but like the groups, has its own individuality, the spark that makes that one special, the uniqueness that doesn’t work in another course. Anyone who has completed KGVI will know exactly what I mean.


Tackling the ‘alpha scenario’!

Do I have a disappointment in KGVI? Yes, no one told me about it when I was the age to come along as a Cadet. I would have loved the experience. I was shy, probably painfully so, at that age and KGVI might just have been that confidence boost I needed. I reckon I probably still am shy, but the remedy for that comes from working with today’s Cadets over the past 16 years.

If there’s a highlight of that time, other than working with some amazing people, it was getting the KGVI experience levelled and credit rated on the SCQF. To have the learning recognised at Level 7, the equivalent of an Advanced Higher or and HNC, adds so much weight to what is an already amazing experience. Seeing the 13 credit points KGVI carries mean the difference from getting into university or missing out on a place, is quite humbling and with exam results arriving during the course itself, you get a sense of walking that road with the Cadet and being able to support them, whatever the outcome may be.

To all the Cadets from this year…good luck for the coming year, you are amazing and you’re going to make a huge difference back in your companies. For those who completed this year: we have the Graduation to look forward to; for those who finished New Entrants last week, the pleasure of doing it all over again! 🙂

You can find out more about the KGVI experience by visiting the website.  Alternatively, drop Alan an email alan.hunter@boys-brigade.org.uk

And….Check out this video made by one of this year’s participants!

Tales from the City of the Seven Hills – YLN let loose in Rome!

BB young leader in 128th Glasgow, Sean Smith, recently returned from BB Scotland’s annual European excursion.  This year it was the turn of the Italian capital Rome to host this merry group of seniors and young leaders.  Sean took a moment to reflect on the three day venture.

Photo 22-06-2015 13 22 30

Having been on the two previous Young Leaders’ Network (YLN) European trips, I had a faint idea of what to expect. The sleepy drive to Edinburgh Airport, the trip to Boots to pick up this year’s forgotten item (last year suncream; this year a toothbrush) the moments of panic when you think you have lost your passport and once you arrive: the heat and the excitement of being somewhere new and foreign and getting to experience the wonders that the city has to offer.

But nothing could have prepared me for the sheer beauty and indeed near perfection of Rome. When you walk up and down the cobbles of the city, every building: whether it be the Sistine Chapel or a regular supermarket seems worthy of taking a photo of. What is perhaps the most amazing thing about Rome is that the buildings are both aesthetically pleasing and designed to maximum efficiency; a rare combination that puts most modern day architecture to shame.

The holiness and spirituality of the Vatican, St Peter’s and the Basilica are almost overwhelming. The architecture and artwork is not only stunning but also highly significant both historically and to practisers of the Christian faith.

My personal favourite venture on this year’s trip was the tour of ancient Rome and the colosseum. Taking no less than 3 hours, the history behind ancient Rome and the colosseum is vast and fascinating. It would be worth going back to Rome just to take in the tour and the history behind it once again.

And the food. The food.

But what made this and all previous YLN trips was the group of people on the trip. The self – dubbed ‘old – heads’, the not so old old – heads and those on the trip for the first time from all over Scotland, lead expertly by ‘uncle’ Bill Stevenson and Niall Rolland is a potent combination that leads to laughs and fun all round.

If you are interested in history, warmer climes, ‘selfies’ and meeting a great bunch of people whilst retaining the key principles of the BB then the yearly YLN European trips will be perfect for you.

Arrivederci & Grazie.

Keep track of news, events and opportunities for seniors and young leaders by checking out the facebook page

Photo 23-06-2015 12 15 36 Rome group Rome dinner.

BB Member seeks to be voice for young people on national stage

Brian Iroegbu, member of 25th Stirling (Dunblane) Company, is standing in the upcoming elections for the Scottish Youth Parliament (2nd – 13th March 2015).  He took time away from the busy campaigning schedule to share more about him, his inspirations and ideas for the future.

Brian for SYP What inspired you to put your name forward?

The bad public perception of young people has denied them of potential opportunities and does not encourage young people to be ambitious. With adequate support we can overcome this challenge. I want to be a voice for young people. I want to help amplify the message that young people like I try to get through to adults. If elected as MSYP, I would use the opportunity to promote the issues youths face and, form a positive public image that promotes the achievements of young people and improve their reputation so that major public see them in a better light.

In what area are you standing?

I am standing for young people all over Scotland but particularly for young people living in the Stirling Parliamentary constituency. Stirling constituency has rural and urban diversity covering approximately 600 square miles with a population of over 70,000 and with about five main high schools and an average student population of 4000.

Why do you think it’s important young people participate in decision making?

Young people are leaders of tomorrow. Their jobs contribute to national development and pay for a growing old population in Scotland. It is important that what they think about is used in decision making. IT technology, computer software and applications are now seen in every area of our lives such as hospitals, education and marketing. Young people are involved in developing this technology so this is key to economic growth. I think it is important for young people to participate in decision making because government decisions on education, employment and welfare have huge consequences on their lives. Young people are best placed to come up with solutions to address the challenges they face as a result of the government’s decisions.

If you were to highlight three challenges facing Scotland’s young people, what would they be?

I would say that three challenges facing Scotland’s young people are: Getting into full-time work; Getting onto the property ladder; and knowing what to do with their lives after education.

How can The BB do more to encourage more to encourage youth participation / social action?

There are various steps I think The Boys’ Brigade could take, including: teach the boys how to be confident and practice public speaking;  increase the voice and value of the young people; have more social events that young people can enjoy; identify local issues that affect young and work as a team to find solution; and invite youth Ministers to come and speak to BB and give opportunity to ask questions.

If you were First Minister, what would be your first priority?!

 My first priority as First Minister would be to find homes for every homeless person in Scotland.

What do you enjoy most about BB? 

Being with my friends and going to classes I find interesting.


My life ambition is to be successful.

And, finally, if you had the choice, which International sporting finale would you attend first, and why?

FIFA World Cup Final because the atmosphere and the good vibes!

You can find out the latest on Brian’s campaign by checking out his facebook page following him on twitter.