Skills for Life
Scouts: On The Way to Personal Growth
Scouting empowers young people to develop valuable skills for their personal and professional lives which also enable them to be active citizens. Skill building has always been at the core of Scouting, and that’s why we are looking forward to launching the Life Skills initiative, with a focus on leadership and interpersonal skills.
What is the Life Skills initiative?
The Life Skills initiative will apply and strengthen leadership and interpersonal skills transversely, emphasizing the importance of self-awareness and empowerment to build resilient communities.
The initiative empowers young people to actively acquire the knowledge and skills they require to shape their economic, social and developmental lives, and to meet the needs of their communities. Through the Life Skills initiative, young people observe and identify challenges within their community, empower themselves with the required knowledge, and seek to impact their communities in innovative ways. In other words, the initiative aims to equip young people with the necessary skills to thrive and be prepared for the future of work and life in their communities.
Navigating the Learning Paths
With the support of Adult Leaders, the Life Skills initiative will guide young people on an educational journey to develop their competencies for sustainable development.
Like all WOSM initiatives, Life Skills has a variety of learning paths that young people can take. They can explore one or all - it’s up to them to try as many challenges as they like.
There are four Life Skills learning paths:
1. Understanding Our World Through Interpersonal Skills
- Understand our world and the people within it
- Identify different interpersonal skills
- Develop their communication and emotional intelligence skills
- Develop and refine their skills in communication, empathy and emotional intelligence
2. Navigating Our World Through Literacies
- Navigate our world through observation, comprehension and application of tools and techniques
- Keep pace with the continuously changing world
- Develop comprehension, decision-making techniques and understanding of systems
- Explore the 10 new literacies of education, including digital, media, coding and more
3. Innovating Our World Through Entrepreneurship
- Innovate our world through an entrepreneurial mindset and critical thinking to address community challenges of today and tomorrow
- Develop skills such as questioning techniques, problem-solving, innovation and “thinking outside the box” to enable young people to be creative in their path to sustainable communities
4. Transforming Our World Through STEAM
- Develop competencies using one or many of the areas of Science, Technology, Engineering, Arts and Mathematics (STEAM) to address challenges in their communities and implement meaningful solutions
- Apply solutions to transform our world through science, technology, engineering, arts and mathematics
Life Skills Learning Process
The learning process of the Life Skills initiative enables young people to explore and define their educational journey in three stages, which are related to the three principles of Scouting:
- Set your vision: Young people will be aware of their own abilities, knowledge, values and interests, as well as the needs of their community. They will be creating their vision and setting goals to become proactive actors in their lives and communities.
- Be empowered: By acquiring competencies for their lives, young people will understand that the competencies they can acquire through this initiative are enablers allowing them to thrive and support their communities.
- Empower others: Finally, they will act with others to implement projects, becoming an inspiration for others and helping them to develop skills that are transversal and relevant to resilient communities.
How can young people embark on this journey?
To enable young people take this journey, National Scout Organizations can incorporate a challenge or the entire suite of Life Skills challenges as part of their national offer. NSOs will also need to incorporate their learning objectives and adapt them in the best way to fit their national guidelines.
Once the initiative is launched and NSOs have all elements in place, Adult Leaders at the grassroots level can introduce the initiative and challenges to young people.
To become members of Life Skills, young people will need to follow the established process with the support of their Adult Leader.
Who can take part in the Life Skills Initiative?
Everyone! It is a global network of young people and adults (ages 7 and above) willing to commit to being part of a global movement, acquiring lifelong competencies, fostering leadership, and strengthening interpersonal skills among young people. In turn, this will help address economic, social, environmental and developmental issues.
What will young people learn along the way?
In each learning path, Scouts will have the opportunity to achieve specific learning objectives tailored to the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) involved, as well as the topic of the challenge. While developing their skills, they can actively create a positive impact aligned with the global sustainability agenda.
We look forward to sharing more details about the Life Skills initiative, currently in its piloting phase with select NSOs, once launched in 2024! Stay tuned.