I’ve used this Scoutmaster minute during our vespers sessions on camping trips.
I asked everyone to bring a stick with them before they sat down around our campfire
When they were seated I gathered all the sticks into a bundle and held them as I stood before the fire.
“You’ll notice that none of the sticks complained as we collected them,” I said , “none of them tried to jump out of the bundle, none of the other sticks tried to shove the others away. When there’s a job to be done we need to get at it without complaining. When we are together as Troop or Patrol everyone is important – no one is excluded.”
I asked a Scout to select a stick and see if he could break it in two- he manged to do this very easily. I then handed him the bundle and asked him to break all of the sticks at once- try as he could it was too difficult.
“A single stick is easy to break,” I said “but a bundle of sticks can’t be broken. We are strong when we are together. We can stand up to greater challenges and bear more difficulties as a Troop or Patrol than as individuals.”
I asked a Scout to chose a stick see how far it would bend.
“Learning to adapt our skills in changing circumstances and tempering our strength with flexibility makes us useful to others.”
I laid the bundle of sticks on the fire.
“Warmth, support and encouragement come from working together – just as these sticks bring light, heat and cheer to the fire.”
Once the sticks are burning I removed one and set it off by itself.
“On our own the spark of intensity dims. We need the support and encouragement of others to maintain our enthusiasm.”
S–Supporting each other Sustains our Spirit.
T–Together we can Take on any Task
I– Intensity Increases when everyone is Included
C–Combined Courage Combats Challenges
K–Keep flexible in changing circumstances
S–Stay at it! Stick together!