Reimagining Our Adventures: A New Vision for Scouts Canada’s Camps

 

  1. Why is Scouts Canada undertaking this project?
  2. Who is overseeing this project?
  3. Who is on the project team?
  4. How was the asset management partner selected?
  5. Can I join the project team?
  6. What do you mean by ‘adventures’ and ‘adventure centres’?
  7. What engagement opportunities will there be for members to get involved?
  8. How can I get involved in the engagement opportunities?
  9. What does this mean for my local camp?
  10. How will members be engaged once the vision is finished and individual camp decisions are being made?
  11. Will every Council have a camp redeveloped?
  12. Can I see a list of every property?
  13. What about camps that have restrictions on them?
  14. What does Scouts Canada intend to do with the proceeds from the sale of properties?
  15. If a decision is made to sell a property, must we sell all of it or could we sell a portion, using the proceeds to finance required facilities upgrades?
  16. Why would Scouts Canada consider buying new properties if we already have so many camps?
  17. Why would Scouts Canada sell inactive camps?
  18. What about properties that serve a purpose other than program?
  19. Who will be responsible for operating any redeveloped adventure centres?
  20. Is this project just focused on camps, or are all property types being evaluated?
  21. What does Scouts Canada mean by ‘Active’ or ‘Inactive’ properties?

 

Introduction

Scouts Canada’s current portfolio of camps and properties is not sustainable, nor is it meeting the expectations of our members and parents. Our camps don’t showcase the modern, relevant movement we are. This project aims to fix that! We want to work with members to reimagine the facilities and services Scouts Canada’s camps provide and then work towards that vision of better adventure centres -creating the infrastructure to help Scouters and youth facilitate great, safe Scouting adventures.
Everyone in the Scouting community can get involved through a series of surveys and other engagements to help us create a vision together.

 

Why is Scouts Canada undertaking this project?

Scouts Canada’s current camp & property portfolio isn’t meeting the needs of members, nor is it a reflection of the modern, relevant and fun organization we are. Scouts Canada wants to own and operate Adventure Centres that make it easier for youth and Scouters to pursue great, safe Scouting adventures.


Who is overseeing this project?

This project was initiated by Scouts Canada’s Board of Governors. The Board of Governors will also approve the project’s output, a new Vision for Scouting Adventure Centres. The Board of Governors has also appointed an Advisory Team to oversee and contribute to the project on the Board’s behalf. The Asset Management Advisory Team is made up of volunteers from across the country who have professional subject matter expertise that is applicable to the project.


Who is on the project team?

The core project team is made up of a Project Manager, the Asset Management Advisory Team and Scouts Canada’s Asset Management Partner, Colliers International. This team is also working with many other teams within Scouts Canada to ensure all perspectives and ideas are considered.


How was the asset management partner selected?

Colliers International was selected through a robust process including: Request for Expressions of Interest, Requests for Proposals, in-person presentations and reference checks. In total, Scouts Canada received 5 proposals from qualified firms, but was happy to select Colliers International due to their alignment with Scouting’s mission and strong proposal.


Can I join the project team?

At this time the project team is set, but there may be additional roles created as the project progresses. Please watch ScoutScene for any such opportunities. As of right now, the best way to get involved in the project is through the engagement opportunities. We encourage you to provide your detailed thoughts on what your ideal camp or adventure centre looks like.


What do you mean by ‘adventures’ and ‘adventure centres’?

One of the core elements of our program is adventure. Within the context of our program—The Canadian Path—an adventure generally means doing something new or exciting: a first-time experience visiting somewhere, participating in an activity or practising a skill. Adventure Centres are a play on that core element of our program, and emphasizes why Scouts Canada has camps and other properties: to help youth and Scouters facilitate adventures for their Sections. Our camps and other properties should be places where members go to participate in activities and have new adventures.


What engagement opportunities will there be for members to get involved?

Throughout the spring and summer of 2020, there will be a series of surveys that initially gather some information, but later will ask members to weigh in and provide feedback on progressively more detailed versions of the Vision for Scouting Adventure Centres. As the project progresses and the vision becomes more clear, there will likely be in-person engagement opportunities to view, discuss and provide feedback on prototypes or conceptualizations.

 

How can I get involved in the engagement opportunities?

We want to hear from you, so it won’t be hard to find us! Please watch all the Scouts Canada social media channels and ScoutScene for updates on the project and how to get involved.


What does this mean for my local camp?

At this point there are no decisions being made about individual properties. The goal of this project is to understand what members’ preferences are, so we can create a detailed vision for the future of our adventure centres. Once we have a vision, we will evaluate the whole portfolio to understand how we can make that vision a reality.


How will members be engaged once the vision is finished and individual camp decisions are being made?

As decisions begin to be made around investing in individual adventure centres, members who are local to each camp will be engaged in consultations regarding development plans.

 

Will every Council have a camp redeveloped?

Not necessarily. As part of this process to develop a new vision for how we facilitate quality adventures, we need to ensure that each adventure centre is financially sustainable enough to cover its operating expenses and capital reinvestments. Adventure centres will be distributed and scaled based on a
number of factors, such as local Scouting membership, local market factors and the opportunity to attract external users. Additionally, some Councils are located in densely populated areas where it likely makes more sense for multiple Councils to share one larger adventure centre, rather than develop multiple smaller ones.


Can I see a list of every property?

A detailed list of every property in Scouts Canada’s portfolio is not being made publicly available for safety reasons (i.e. publicly identifying inactive/vacant properties). Please see the Scouts Canada Property Portfolio Fact Sheet for summary information regarding the portfolio.


What about camps that have restrictions on them?

Scouts Canada is aware that some camps and properties have restrictions on them as a result of by-laws, zoning or as conditions of donation to Scouting. These restrictions will be taken into consideration when identifying camps for redevelopment.


What does Scouts Canada intend to do with the proceeds from the sale of properties?

Scouts Canada intends to work with members and Councils to invest the proceeds into the development of our Vision for Scouting Adventure Centres, or other mission-aligned initiatives.

 

If a decision is made to sell a property, must we sell all of it or could we sell a portion, using the  proceeds to finance required facilities upgrades?

All options will be investigated, but it is premature to discuss specific scenarios since we still do not understand what facility upgrades members are looking for or their cost.


Why would Scouts Canada consider buying new properties if we already have so many camps?

If we discover that none of the camps in the portfolio meet the requirements members are looking for, then Scouts Canada would consider acquiring a new property. For example, the requirements could be related to the properties’ proximity to an urban centre or the properties’ natural features.


Why would Scouts Canada sell inactive camps?

Inactive camps and properties do have a cost associated with them for insurance, site security, etc. It’s also important to note that these inactive or underutilized properties have an ‘opportunity cost’ associated with them. Scouts Canada wants to develop adventure centres that drive our mission and meet the needs of our members; we have the opportunity to use the proceeds from the sale of some properties to redevelop other properties.


What about properties that serve a purpose other than program?

As part of this project, we intend to evaluate properties for any mission-aligned activity or purpose. Additionally, we are also evaluating properties for their potential to create recurrent revenue streams for Scouts Canada. This additional revenue could fund a variety of other mission-aligned initiatives.


Who will be responsible for operating any redeveloped adventure centres?

Scouts Canada’s Property Operations team will be responsible for operating any redeveloped adventure centres, in consultation with local Councils.


Is this project just focused on camps, or are all property types being evaluated?

All property types (camps, offices, Scout Halls, cabins, etc.) will be evaluated as part of this project. Regardless of the type of property, the goal remains to develop mission-aligned properties, which reflect our brand and make it easier for Scouters and youth to pursue great, safe Scouting adventures.


What does Scouts Canada mean by ‘Active’ or ‘Inactive’ properties?

Scouts Canada has safety and operating standards (which incorporate legislated safety requirements) that all properties need to meet in order to be open for use. Properties that meet these standards are considered ‘Active’.

Properties that are ‘Inactive’ fall into two broad categories:
1) Those that do not meet Scouts Canada’s operating standards and have been closed by Scouts Canada; 2) Those that are permanently closed due to lack of interest from members, they’re inaccessible or a variety of other reasons.

 

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