Monday 17 December 2018
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Nick Paluch: Five things I'd change about Guernsey

Friday 07 December 2018

Nick Paluch: Five things I'd change about Guernsey

First and foremost he's a husband and father, with two sons under the age of three, but you may know Nick Paluch as the Bailiwick Commissioner for Scouts.

That's a volunteer role which basically means Nick is responsible for the running of Scouting operations in the islands and for guiding the organisation forward.

"I manage nearly 200 volunteers working with over 600 young people across 15 groups (hopefully soon to be 16). I’ve been involved in Scouting since the age of 6 and have enjoyed every minute of it including some fantastic trips away to Canada, Sweden, Switzerland and more. My day job is a Manager at Livingroom Estate Agents where I head up the Local Market Sales Team and in my spare time I’m a keen gardener and am in the process of renovating our house!" he said. 

Nick Paluch

Pictured: Nick Paluch. 

We asked Nick what five things he'd change about Guernsey:

shutterstock do nothing

1) Nothing!

Guernsey is a beautiful place filled with great people so I’m inclined to say don’t change a thing, however - this would be a short article if I stopped at that! 

It’s often said that if you stand still while the world moves forward you’re effectively moving backwards. There’s room for some improvement in Guernsey but we need to stay true to our roots and remember what works!

Our coastline is stunning, our town is quaint and we are, in my opinion, perfectly placed to embrace innovation. Where else in the world can you have such a simple connection with government and with the wider community - we just need to work together!

shutterstock volunteering

2) Incentivise volunteering

Our island relies on the third sector to function and we are blessed to have so many caring and generous people here but it’s not inherently sustainable. I volunteer because I want to give something back to the community and I find it hugely rewarding but it’s not always easy with a full time job and a family. I think there should be some discussion on how we get more people to volunteer for charities and how we can make it easier for those who already volunteer - at the end of the day we will all know someone who has been supported by a charity and most of us will directly benefit from one at some point in time.

Could the States provide tax incentives to businesses who encourage volunteering in work time? Could there be a scheme that recognises the fantastic efforts of volunteers Island wide?

cycle pavement 

3) Cycle infrastructure

Most people have an opinion on the traffic on this island and it’s fair to say that it’s a controversial subject, however, it clearly needs to be looked at.

As part of the new Island Development Plan I think that there should be a mechanism for drastically improving the cycle infrastructure and to really aim to make it so easy to cycle around that we don’t have any excuses!

You can ride on a single cycle path across the whole of Europe now but Guernsey’s only got the short run from Bulwer Avenue to Town…

solar 

4) Solar subsidies

Electricity on a small island has very much been in the news recently but it does highlight that we need to generate more sustainable power on the island. It wouldn’t take much to dramatically improve the number of households taking up renewable power sources but at the moment there is no incentive and the buy-back rate for electricity is low in comparison to many other countries around the world.

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5) Scouts for all!

Ok, I am a bit biased but I think Scouts is an organisation that every young person should join. We not only teach important life skills but we also encourage community interaction, team building, self confidence and all this while having fun!

We have over 600 young people and 200 adults involved in Guernsey which is great but we would love to grow the movement and welcome any new comers.

See scouts.org.gg for more information. 

Pictured: Nick Paluch. 

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