Ceremonies play a very important role in the life of a Scout Group. They usually take place to mark special occasions for a youth member, adult or some part of the organisation.
Scouting Ireland uses a number of approved ceremonies in its programme; including investitures, link ceremonies, badge presentation and award presentations.
The golden rule of all Scout ceremonies is that they be Short, Simple and Sincere. It is important to create a sense of scouting atmosphere for your ceremonies. This can be done by thinking about the location (a scout hall, a campsite, the top of a mountain, etc.) the props you use (a campfire, a pioneering structure, etc.) and the content of the ceremony itself. What is important is that the occasion is special and that the ceremony is relevant for all the participants.
Presentation of Awards/Badges
During their journey through Scouting, youth members will receive many badges, adult members will also receive awards from time to time. A common practice is to organise an awards night where the presentation will be made; inviting a Scout dignitary is also popular. This is could be your County Commissioner, Provincial Commissioner, a local member of the National Management Committee, etc.
There are certain protocols to follow when you are inviting a guest to visit. These are mostly about providing the most information possible to help with the address they make. Also please give the guest ample notice and wait to get a reply before announcing their attendance.
Two weeks prior to the event, submit the following invitation; date, time, name of venue and directions to the event (map is possible). Other details should include details of the programme for the event, time the guest should arrive, who will meet them, is there a guard of honour, details of their participation, etc. The details of participation should include names and order of speakers, names of other VIPs and/or professional staff members.
Ceremonial precedence for national flags can be spilt into four styles;
Precedence and display. The national flag takes precedence in the state over all other flags. When the national flag is flown with other flags on staffs of equal height, the national flag must be on the right of the line of flag(s); this is on the observers left if they are facing the flag. Where, however, one half in a group of staffs is higher than the others, the national flag must be flown from the right-most staff in the higher part.
Scout flag at half-mast. The Scout flag shall be flown at half-mast at the Scout den at which a member of the Scout Group has died. The flag should be raised to the top of the flag pole and then lowered to half-mast position. When taking down the flag it should be raised to the top and then lowered from this position.
Flag compliments. Flags shall be dipped by way of compliment or salute on the following occasions; during religious ceremonies and during funeral or memorial ceremonies.
Scout funeral, draping of coffin. At a Scout funeral the coffin shall be draped with a ceremonial Scout flag; it shall be placed lengthways and evenly on the coffin. It shall be removed from the coffin before it is lowered into the grave.
Funerals of members or others
Sadly this is an aspect of Scouting you might have to know about in your time with us. Before any involvement is planned, consult with the family of the deceased with regard to uniformed presence, pall bearing, guard of honour or Scout flag on coffin. Generally speaking, members should attend in full uniform. Also please read SID 87.12 Scouting Ireland - Funeral Guidelines