Introducing our Youth Commissioner Team: Ben Hodge
In this series of blogs, we introduce members of our Youth Commissioner team. This blog should help you get to know Ben Hodge, our County Youth Commissioner, a little better.
Ben, how are you feeling about being Merseyside’s County Youth Commissioner?
I’m so happy and excited to be supporting YouthShaped work across Team Merseyside! I’m really looking forward to the next few years and what it will bring for YouthShaped Scouting
What attracted you to becoming part of the Youth Commissioner team?
I have always felt that being YouthShaped should be at the forefront of what we do as an organisation. As an organisation for young people, I passionately believe that giving young people the choice and freedom to create their own Scouting journey will really give them Skills For Life that would not otherwise be gained outside of Scouting
Tell our members a bit about yourself?
I am in my first year of University studying Media and Performance. I began Scouting aged 9 and progressed through the movement to where I am today. I’ve had so many wonderful opportunities through the past 9-10 years of being a Scout such as sailing on a tall ship around Scotland, being a part of the British Youth Council delegation, speaking in parliament, going to pride, going on so many different camps. I once went on nearly 30 camps in 2016 alone! Scouting has given me so many skills which I use all the time in my day to day life. When I completed the National Citizen Service, I was the only one who could map read!!
Aside from being very involved in Scouting, I am a trustee for the Michael Causer Foundation and do a lot of LGBT+ activism work. I hope to one day either work in the media for the purpose of giving under-represented groups a truthful voice, or become a stand up comedian
Last album you listened to?
Dear Evan Hansen soundtrack
If you could choose any meal what would it be?
Loaded nachos with home-made guacamole and hummus. Yum!!
If you could turn any activity into an Olympic sport, what would you have a good chance at winning medal for?
The busiest schedule event. I never have time to sit down so I’d win gold every time! Team GB I’m coming for ya!!!
The Breakfast Club
What could you give a 40-minute presentation on with absolutely no preparation?
The experiences of LGBT people in the North West. I could probably go over the 40 minute mark with that :P
What is something you think everyone should do at least once in their lives?
Everyone should try camping at least once in their lives. No electric hook-up, no posh toilets or showers. Just a nice relaxing time laughing with friends around a proper campfire
What is something that your friends would consider “so you”?
Making terrible…. terrible jokes constantly.
What can you not get right, no matter how many times you try?
I can’t do a single push up. Not one. I just collapse on the ground.
Do you have a claim to fame?
I’ve been on BBC Three’s Youtube channel a few times
Ever met a famous person?
I met Bear Grylls at his Endeavour show in 2016. Then got on stage with him as well to help put up a tent. Needless to say, my explorer leader was jealous
If you could make a 20 second phone call to yourself at any point in your life past or future, when would you call and what would you say?
I’d call my past self and say ‘everything is going to be ok, don’t be afraid to be who you truly are. Also, get a haircut!!!!’