Goodbye to Gold Beaver

The ranks of the Barbados Boy Scouts Association were recently weakened by the death of Assistant Chief Commissioner Rosaline Bend.

Rosaline, or Gold Beaver as she was known to the Beaver Section, was a very dedicated member of the national association.

When the Chief Commissioner, Dr. Nigel Taylor decided that there was to be an additional Section to be formed in Barbados, he indicated that the leaders interesting in being specially trained to administer this section, would have to spend many more hours in specialised training, as this section, though active in areas like Canada, was extremely new to Barbados.

One of the first leaders to indicate an interest was Rosaline Bend and she was also one of the first leaders who became a part of that selected and special group, spending hours and hours being trained by the Chief Commissioner to administer this Section.

Later, she was appointed and warranted the first Assistant Chief Commissioner of the Beaver Section of the Barbados Boy Scouts Association. On January 15, 2004, when MP Cynthia Forde, who was then the Parliamentary Secretary in the Ministry of Education officially opened the Beaver Scouts Section at the Headquarters of the Barbados Boy Scouts Association, no one could have expressed the joy which was present like Rosaline. This was a dream come true.

In order to make sure that the new Beaver Leaders, the new members of the Beaver Colonies and the parents understand the programme of this new section, the entire national activities of the Beaver Scouts were concentrated at Headquarters.

Every Saturday, there would have been a sea of boys and parents working with their leaders, making kites, playing games, working on many badge activities, being part of tours to the fire stations and the many animal farms which would place them closer to the much sought after award, the Chief Scout Bronze Award.

Rosaline was a very involved person. She was a Gilwellian, having completed her Wood Badge in 2000 and she also received two national Scout Award, the Order of the Bronze Star in 2001 and the Order of the Flying Fish in 2005. Additionally, she worked with the Scout band but many who saw her operate with the Beaver Scouts would state without any apologies that they knew it was her first love in Scouting.

One of her last duties before her passing was to lead a contingent of Beaver Scouts to St. Vincent as part of the celebrations of the Centenary of Scouting in Barbados. She was of the view that as the many Sections were celebrating the Centenary with Camps, she desired the Beavers to have a camp as well.

The interesting things is, Beaver Scouts are only permitted to camp overnight and Rosaline presented a case to the Chief Commissioner requesting special permission for the Beaver Scouts not only to travel overseas but to be able to camp for two nights in the Caribbean country.

After that permission was granted, she made sure that national camps were in place prior to the overseas tour sparing no quarters to prepare and sensitise the boys and their parents as to the realities of an overseas Beaver camp. With the help of her fellow Beaver Commissioners and Leaders, she led a very successful overseas camp.

If one heard of the accomplishments of the camp or even saw the programme, one would never believe that Rosaline and the group could have accomplished so much in such a short time. The sky was the limit for Assistant Chief Bend and her Beaver Scouts.

The Chief Commissioner, the members of his Headquarters’ Commissioners of which Rosaline was a member, all the District Commissioners and members of the Scout Movement in Barbados thank God for her life and dedication to Scouting.

As the first Beaver Scout Assistant Chief Commissioner, it is certain that she can join that Biblical leader, the Apostle Paul in stating as recorded in 2 Timothy 4:7: “I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.”

Or better yet, the translation from the Aramaic Bible in Plain English epitomises Rosaline’s spirit, “I have fought an excellent fight; I have finished my race and I have kept my faith.”

Everything was personal to Rosaline. The prayers of the Association are with her family.

At the time of publishing this article the funeral arrangements had not as yet been made public.

May she rest in Peace.

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