When Brett Gallant thinks back to his days in scouting, he remembers all the outdoor activities he took part in with his patrol, with leaders who were encouraging and supportive.
So, after the Miramichi man become involved in the mainstream scouting program with his children, he wanted to try to recreate that experience for his kids. That's when he discovered the Baden Powell Service Association and began doing some research about it.
"I stumbled across this organization that really spoke to me. It closely aligned to what I did when I was younger."
Gallant realized he had the opportunity to offer the outdoor youth program in the Miramichi area and began the process of creating the group and finding volunteers to help build a team of leaders..
"The response was very, very positive. It was nice to see that another another option was welcomed and needed. So it was quite rewarding to take a leap of faith."
Gallant describes the program offered by the 1st Miramichi BPSA Scouting organization as being something old presented in a new way.
"We believe in the patrol system which follows this: teach them, trust them and let the youth lead. So a lot of times what that means is the experienced or older youth are going to show the ropes to the new and inexperienced youth."
The program is open to youth and adults from ages 5 and up, who can join a section for their age group.
Gallant said the intent is to teach them the skills they need in the outdoors, let them put then into practice and if they need help, an older patrol member or leader can offer that. Its focus is to get them out of the church hall or community centre basement.
"There's a lot of opportunities for growth when you give these youth a chance to lead and teach and trust and to work in these systems."
The group has just began it's second year and Gallant said it continues to grow as more girls and boys join. And while he said its nice to see it grow, he has realized the program is something more.
"Sometimes it's not really about that. It's about having given the youth experience."
Gallant said he'd consider the program a success even if only three youth were involved, as long as they had the opportunity to experience the outdoor program to learn new skills.
"But I do see it growing, because it it just natural that these children talk to each other about that kind of experience."