Making Blue & Gold affordable

The season for Blue & Gold Banquets is upon us. The Blue & Gold tradition is to celebrate the birthday of Scouting in the United States. It was on February 8, 1910, that the Boy Scouts of  America was established, and the first Scout troops formed that year. Twenty years later, the younger-boy program, Cub Scouting, was instituted, and the Blue & Gold Banquet came along as a way to celebrate each year.

There are no hard and fast rules about how to plan and carry out a Blue & Gold banquet. Continue reading “Making Blue & Gold affordable”

Q&A: Chartered organizations, adult training

Time to open the mailbag and answer a couple more of your questions.

First, from the chartered organization representative of a Cub Scout pack:

We’re chartered by the Parent-Teacher Association of the elementary school that we serve. Up until now, the PTA has been a affiliated with the school, but they are separating and the PTA is becoming a separate entity. They are filing to become a non-profit organization with the IRS. Do we need to take any action or file any charter paperwork with the council?

Continue reading “Q&A: Chartered organizations, adult training”

Fill in the blanks – the right way

With fall comes our surge of new members in the Boy Scouts of America – mainly in the Cub Scouting program – and with it comes the paperwork. The BSA membership of our current members gets renewed at recharter time, but those new to Scouting or new to our units (including transfers from other packs) need to complete a membership application. And of course, this means both youth and adults.

For the last year or two, it’s been possible to submit applications online. This allows the new member to complete a paperless application, have it routed automatically to the unit leader or committee chair and chartered organization representative for approval, and forwarded to the council for processing. Key unit leaders must be registered on my.scouting.org, and will receive emails to notify them of new applications needing their action. The system makes the process smooth and foolproof with no paper to handle.

For various reasons, though, this approach isn’t optimal for many units: Continue reading “Fill in the blanks – the right way”

How do you onboard new parents?

As young people cross over from Cub Scouts to ScoutsBSA‘s programs, their parents frequently follow. Often, the more involved adults have been volunteer leaders in their childrens’ packs, and it is this source of talent that many troops seek to help do the many things that adults do for the Scouts.

The ScoutsBSA program differs substantially from Cub Scouting in that the responsibility for carrying out the program rests on the youth members rather than on the adults. The transition is meant to be a smooth and continuous one for the youth, but can be disruptive to the adults who have been used to running the show for the last several years. Continue reading “How do you onboard new parents?”

Roll out the welcome mat!

This fall, we’ll be joined by families new to Scouting. Curious about the flyer they might have picked up at a school assembly or by what their excited son or daughter told them about Cub Scouts, they’ll be walking through our doors into what – for them – is a great unknown.

Think back to when you were brand new to Scouting. Was there someone who welcomed you in and showed you what our program is all about?

If not, there should have been, and now we have that someone who can help your new families feel welcome and get them into the swing of things. Continue reading “Roll out the welcome mat!”