News Release

Jack Lytras receives the Queen’s Scout Award


On Saturday 10th August at Gilwell Scout Park in Gembrook, Victoria, 18-year-old Jack Lytras received the prestigious Queen’s Scout Award – the highest award in Venturer Scouts (14–17-year-olds). Only a small fraction of Venturers in Australia earn this award; it’s an exceptional honour. The other part of the award is the ‘Royal Certificate’ which Jack will receive from Victorian Governor the Hon. Linda Dessau AC at Government House in October.

Having previously attained the Grey Wolf Award (peak award in Cubs) and the Australian Scout Medallion (peak award in Scouts), Jack explained that to achieve the Queen’s Scout Award he had to be disciplined and know what he wanted to do.

“For each of the 18 badges I had to earn, I had to present my plan to my unit council, often finding and nominating my own suitably qualified examiner and explaining their expertise in each field. When I’d completed my goals, I had to get the right things signed and make a written report back to my unit council for approval. A couple of times I was sent back to provide more evidence or include more in the report. The process taught me accountability.”

Jack’s activities included: a week’s preparation of a Bundaberg beach, QLD, for turtle egg laying season (he saw loggerhead turtles lay their eggs); completion of an advanced 4wd course; compilation of a photo book about a family road trip across the USA; first aid qualifications; work on a 1940s tractor to return it to running order; a leadership course; assistance to Gembrook Cubs weekly for 6 months, under the auspices of leader, Louise Ciddor.

Jack’s younger brother Sam, also in Venturers, built a Ninja warrior obstacle course on which Jack trained over several months. His finish time diminished drastically from 7 mins 40 to 3 mins 50. The youngest sibling, Ben, attends Cubs and is fast following in his brothers’ footsteps.

The highlight of Jack’s time in Venturers was the 2015 world scout jamboree, for which he raised $7000 to attend a massive temporary camp in Japan, along with 45,000 other scouts from across the globe.

“The activity I most enjoyed was the 1-day hike on Mt Fuji, seeing how impressive it is and knowing it’s a [dormant] volcano.”

Jack acknowledges his leaders’ and parents’ involvement in his success. His dad, Lorin, affirmed his key contribution was: “Taxi-driving across Victoria every weekend!”

“We’re very proud of Jack. This is a real honour for him and represents hundreds of hours of work, skill development and service,” said Jack’s mum, Anika.

Of the whole experience Jack remarks, “It’s helped me grow as a person. I hadn’t tried a bunch of things before, so it’s made me more confident and organised for later in life. It was hard. Sometimes I asked myself ‘Why am I even doing this?’ I prayed to get motivation and strength to finish what I had to do to achieve my goal.”

So, what’s next for Jack? He’s completing VCE and is a VET student at the Academy of Interactive Entertainment, Melbourne. He’s also preparing to serve a 2-year mission for The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints around the end of 2019. He attends the Pakenham Ward of the Church in the Melbourne Australia Gippsland Stake.

For more information on the Queen’s Scout Award and other Australian scouting awards, see:

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