Zoom and Scouts team up to tackle child loneliness in the UK

Zoom Video Communications, Inc., a leading provider of video-first unified communications, has proudly announces the impact of its partnership with The Scout Association – the largest coeducational youth work charity operating in the UK.

Since the beginning of the pandemic, isolation and loneliness amongst young people has significantly increased. Working with Zoom, The Scout Association has been able to continue to provide a sense of community and connection during ongoing national lockdowns. Especially as, for some, weekly Scout meetings are the only time they get to see their friends.

As a result of its partnership with Zoom, The Scout Association has provided virtual experiences for 475,000 young people aged 6 – 25 years. Supported by 163,000 adult volunteers, the organisation has facilitated and enabled opportunities to develop the fundamental skills needed for school, university, job interviews, and later life.

The Scouts worked with Zoom to ensure they created materials to show how to connect safely as well as how to take full advantage of the platform to make meetings both fun and interactive. This included using digital whiteboards and breakout rooms.

Since March 2020:

  •   The Scout Association has clocked up 135 million Zoom minutes as part of 300,000 different programme sessions and support meetings 
  •   99% of the organisation – including 7,727 local groups – have signed up to the platform
  •   7,482 Zoom licenses have been activated for use by local Scout Groups, Districts, Counties and Regions
  •   Enabled 475,000 young people and 165,000 adult volunteers to take part in Zoom enabled education and support sessions

Matt Hyde, CEO of The Scout Association, said “This partnership has been key to allowing us to continue to operate effectively throughout the pandemic. Zoom hasn’t just helped us with regular meetings, it has also enabled us to try new things, such as allowing the UK Scout Group to take part in a virtual camp with other groups around the world. With the platform being so secure and easy to use, we’ve had everything we’ve needed to communicate in one place. It’s easy to underestimate the positive impact this has had on the mental well-being of our young people, but none of it would have been possible without Zoom’s support.”

Phil Perry, Head of Zoom UK and Ireland, said “We feel incredibly privileged to be in a position to help people stay connected, especially during such a difficult and uncertain time. The very nature of our platform lends itself to collaboration and teamwork, both central tenets of The Scouting Association. It has been both humbling and exciting to witness how our work with higher education institutions over the years has translated into a viable solution for The Scouting Association. The organisation has such a positive impact and influence on young people across the UK, it’s essential for these services to continue.”

Hyde concludes, “Since we started working with Zoom, we have not only delivered our youth programme but the experience has made us think about how we organise many of our internal processes. Even when young people go back to face-to-face meetings, we can see a future for Zoom in helping us carry out regular meetings of trustees, supporting our training and appointments process, supporting our volunteer management and engaging with the parents of our youth members.”

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