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Welcome to the Boy Scouts of America! By becoming a parent of a Boy Scout, you are setting your son out on the grand adventure of Scouting. This is a tremendously important and rewarding endeavor that you will be able to share with him.
What is it all about? What will you be expected to do? What does it cost? We have prepared this booklet to answer these questions.
The participation of adults during scouting functions is vital to the success of the troop. Many times the question is asked, "What can I do as a parent at troop meetings and campouts?" Great question, here are some answers. First of all we encourage all adults to register as a Troop Committee member. The Troop Committee manages the adminstrative aspects of the Troop's operation.
Unlike Cub Scouting, which many of you are familiar with, Boy Scouting is a youth-run organization. The boys learn how to organize and lead the Troop. After training, and with supervision from the adult leaders, the boys run the show. (And yes, we do expect them to make lots of mistakes)
The boys in the Troop will be working towards their First Class and then Eagle ranks. As they travel on their trail to Eagle they will not only learn how to lead a team to a goal, but they will actually lead teams of scouts in a number of situations. Many Eagle Scouts put their accomplishments on their resumes and find they are often considered in obtaining acceptance into college or the work force.
Boy Scouting also provides for growth of moral strength and character, teaches citizenship, and enhances the development of physical, mental and emotional fitness. This is all done in the spirit of fun and adventure.
Meetings are held to:
- Provide leadership opportunities for the boys
- Plan and prepare for various troop activities
- Enjoy lively games, competition, and other recreational events
- Provide experiences toward advancement and merit badge attainment
- Feature occasional speakers on a variety of topics of interest to the boys
- Reinforce the principles of Scouting
Parents at Troop Meetings:
- Get your boy to the troop meeting on time. Come early if you can, so you can help with setup.
- Participate during the opening ceremonies (flag, pledge, oath, law).
- Listen to the announcements. Often important information is conveyed. It is amazing how little our youth often retain!
- Try to watch the noise level of the adult conversations. Even if the adults are speaking softly, the combined effect of several conversations can interfer with the meeting program.
- Make payments on time. Campout payments are due the second Tuesday before the campout. Summer and winter camp payment schedules are distributed.
- Get involved! Speak to the Committee Chairman or the Scoutmaster about where the Troop currently needs help.
- As a registered Troop Committee member, help out with Boards of Review for Scouts that are advancing.
- Chaperone and even participate in the game
Parents on Campouts:
- Please come! Parent involvement has been a long tradition in the troop and it is great to be in the outdoors with your son.
- Offer to drive! We always need cars/vans/pickups.
- Safety is the top priority on our campouts! If you see an unsafe condition, talk to the Scoutmaster or, if necessary, take immediate action.
- Camp Leader: The leader in camp is the SPL (Senior Patrol Leader). He is supported by his Patrol Leaders, the Scoutmaster and a designated Assistant Scoutmaster.
- Remember that Boy Scouts, in contrast to Cub Scouts, is a boy run program. Let the boys do it themselves! They need a chance to test their leadership skills, make mistakes and learn from them! If you have a suggestion for the youth, try to resist the temptation to offer advise (exception is a safety issue, then you are expected to take action). Instead, pass your suggestion to the Scoutmaster or Assistant Scoutmaster. They will talk to the SPL (the youth in charge) who will appoint a youth to coach the boy(s).
- When you arrive at the campsite, your job will be to set up your personal tent.
- There will be plenty of opportunities to help. Just ask the Scoutmaster or one of the Assistant Scoutmaster what you can do. If you like to cook, there is lots of cooking to be done. If you already have outdoor skills, offer your services. If you would like to learn a skill, watch what the boys are doing and learn it yourself. If there is nothing needed, sit back, relax and enjoy the outdoors!
Parents need to Always:
- Encourage and bring FUN.
- Get Trained! The Committee Chairman can tell you where ane when.
- Read the Scout Handbook and Merit Badge books so you can be a resource and inspiration.
- Lead by example Live by the Scout Oath, Law and Motto and the Scouts will too.
Check out our troop activity calendar. (There is a .PDF file and can be found on the main page of this web site.) You will need Adobe Acrobat to look at it. This can be downloaded for free. (Also from the main page.)
Please take a few minutes to read Chapter 1 of your son's Boy Scout Handbook.
A Question and answer sheet may be downloaded NewMembers.pdf (Also on the main page of this web site)