Thousands of Scouts celebrate war hero and global humanitarian’s birthday
7 September 2017
Thousands of Scouts across the UK are raising awareness and taking action to improve the lives of disabled people, with parties and quizzes to mark war hero and global humanitarian Group Captain Leonard Cheshire’s 100th birthday this month.
The Scouts’ celebrations sit alongside a range of activities from the charity Leonard Cheshire Disability to honour the impact its founder, who would have been 100 on Thursday 7 September, made on the lives of disabled people during his lifetime.
The Scouts are in partnership with Leonard Cheshire Disability through the ‘A Million Hands’ initiative. Through the initiative The Scout Association is mobilising half a million people to make positive change in communities across the UK. Leonard Cheshire Disability provides resources and activities for Scout groups to learn about disability and also invites them to visit its care services.
One of the Scouts involved in a Leonard Cheshire 100th birthday party in County Durham, Alexis, said:
'Our visit to a Leonard Cheshire care home was eventful and we met many people there who had disabilities. I didn’t think they were different because they’re not- they’re like us. It was great to share skills and make new friends.'
Fellow Scout Sophie Britton said:
'We enjoyed meeting the residents and helping them learn new skills. We enjoyed playing the games with them and look forward to meeting with them again.'
Scout leader Ian Milburn from County Durham said:
'Over the last year we have held disability awareness sessions and we have had visits to a nearby Leonard Cheshire service to interact with the residents it amazing to see the impact we can have in our community.'
At his and many other groups across the UK this month, Scouts will use the Leonard Cheshire quiz and party packs to learn about the history of Leonard Cheshire and the work his charity does today.
Leonard Cheshire Disability’s Jocelyn Cole, who manages the charity’s partnership with the Scouts said:
'The parties and quizzes are designed to be fun, but also to help Scouts to learn and challenge preconceptions about disabled people. Many groups will go on to take action in their community to improve the lives of disabled people.'
Some groups also chose to raise money for the charity at their parties, supporting the vital services Leonard Cheshire Disability provides.
Group Captain Leonard Cheshire sadly passed away in 1992 after almost half a century of humanitarian work supporting disabled people around the world.
Continuing his legacy, the charity currently runs care services globally, and also has specific projects to widen education and employment opportunities for disabled people.
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