It is time for Student Spotlight again!
Our February edition features Elsa Cassar, a first-year medical student. Elsa is a scout, being a member of the National Youth Scout Council (NYSC), as well as being a member of the Mosta Scouts Group. As a member of the NYSC, she had the opportunity to co-ordinate a campaign last summer that promoted physical activity.
With the World Organisation of Scout Movement celebrating Founder’s Day last week, we have caught up with Elsa to get to know about her experience as a scout.
Listen to what Elsa had to tell us:
Why are you active within the Scout Association of Malta?
I've been in the Scout Association for 11 years and I consider it a major part of my identity. I joined because I love the adventerous aspect- I've abseiled upside down, I've slept several nights on a raft and I've hiked for days. I also have a passion for organising activities and events. A massive project I'm participating in right now is the planning for 'MedJam18' - a 2,000-person international camp which will take place this summer in Malta - in which my role is to plan the programme for the 8-day event. It's an amazing learning opportunity and I'm really enjoying it!
Elsa wearing the NSYC scarf- the colours represent the colours of the different age sections, showing that it represents all youths
What is the purpose of the National Scout Youth Council?
The National Scout Youth Council is a group of ten youths elected by fellow scouts, where our aim is to highlight and advocate for youth issues. Our vision is the main basis of Scouting -youth empowerment- by providing young people a platform to initiate change. I've been in NSYC for just over a year now, during which time we've done a campaign to promote being active, worked on internal policies and organised large-scale events.
Could you elaborate on the campaign that you have carried out?
I was project coordinator of Explore, a campaign that NSYC put up last summer. Our aim was to get youths to be more active, physically and socially. We got some funds from Agenzija Zghazagh and put it into creating this nationwide challenge, with a variety of different tasks, each with points. There were five winning teams, depending on the amount of points gained, with first place winning flights with AirMalta.
Elsa addressing the closing of this campaign, with the President H.E. Marie Louise Coleiro Preca, and Parliamentary Secretary for Youth and Sport, Hon. Clifton Grima
What does scouting offer to its members?
Children can start in the Association from as young as 5 years old. As they grow older, they enjoy more challenging activities, particularly in the outdoors. Eventually they may take up leadership roles where they teach what they have learnt to the younger ones. Through this journey, scouting provides thousands of young people in Malta with adventures, friendships and valuable skills. For us, our scout group becomes our second family.
How do you balance your commitments within the National Scout Youth Council, and your academic studies?
Like most, I work best under pressure. I'm used to having a busy lifestyle, with countless meetings and emails. I guess it's really important to have an outlet for stress. For me, a relaxed night out always does the trick.
Thank you Elsa for being our February entry of our Student Spotlight initiative! We commend the Scout Movement for the values they instil in our youths.
Do you know of an MMSA member whose work deserves to be recognised? Then nominate him/her by sending an email to email@example.com!