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  • Charter Orginazation

    I was a Tiger parent last year, and I have no prior scouting experience. At the end of last year the Cub Master decided to call it quits and left. No one stepped up to take his place, so now I am a new Cub Master. Prior to volunteering for the position, I knew there were some problems between the Pack and the Charter orginazation. I had no idea how bad it was until I became directly involved. Other than a place to have Den meetings (pack meetings are at the school)there is no involement between the church and the Pack. At times it appears the church does not even want the pack to be there. Last month we had our Father son cake bake, a local business was wanting to donate $500 wourth of prizes to be given as rewards, but they needed a tax number. The church refused to give the tax number. At the begining of the year I had to argue with them because they wanted a security deposit for the den space. The reason I was told that 10 years ago two Tiger scouts tossing pebbles and one of the pebbles came close to a window. When I refused to give a security deposit, it took them nearly two months to decide if they wanted to continue to have us there. This is just a few of the ridiculous immature things I have been confronted with over the past few months. I have been thinking of finding a new charter orginazation but I don't know what I should expect from one, or should I be happy with a place to meet. There is no committee and I do not believe our DE really even cares. I guess my question is....What should I expect from a charter orginazation?(This message has been edited by Pack 180)

  • #2
    Before jumping ship.. Think.. How much Pack Equipment and money in the bank does the Pack have? You don't own it, your Charter Org does.. If it is a breakup under bad terms they can choose to keep it. If it is a mutual agreement they don't want you, you don't want them, they could still keep it or release the equipment/money to your new Charter organization.. It will be there call, and not something you can sneak off without telling them. I believe they must sign a release form..

    Better to try to work out the problem. Best way is to have a meeting and figure out what the problem really is then just taking rumor at gospel.

    They might not like you, because they have heard that you do not like them.. We have had people in the past who wanted the unit to move so purposely caused the tension by playing the unit against the CO.. Without communication by those wanting a good relationship, they will get the CO's ear and cause damage.

    Can the unit do a service project for your CO?
    Let them know that BSA has insurance, if something is broken, you can put in a claim to BSA.
    Do you do anything with them for Scout Sunday.. Come in uniform to the church.. We also put on a pancake breakfast that sunday.. We make a slight profit, but it is low cost Bfast for them, and we run looping Videos of our past years events so they know who we are and what we do..

    A good relationship between CO & you.. Goes both way.. And may lean more to being the responsibility of the unit to maintain the good relationship.


    • #3
      Give your DE a call and tell him you are about to fold and he will be losing some numbers, I mean members. THAT WILL GET HIS ATTENTION!

      1)Do you have a unit commisioner who can help?

      2)Do you have a District Commissioner who can help if there is no unit commissioner?

      3) have you attended a Roundtable, and talked to folsk there?

      The Charter Organization (CO)actually owns the unit: supplies, money, etc. They are suppose to help you get leaders, supply a place to meet, represent the unit at both the district and council level, and a bunch of other things.

      Some COs get it, must in mu experience don't. Some are involved, most don't want to get involved, and some just want to let the unit die a prolonged, slow death as they do not want scouting there at all.

      If memory serves, there is a Charter Organization Representative fast start on MYSCOUTING.ORG that may be able to give you some good answers.


      • #4
        Even the best behaved Scouts can be tough on a building and if the CO isn't seeing an upside to Scouting it may not seem worth it. Moosetracker has given you some good advice about improving the relationship and the pitfalls to moving.

        I will share one thing that has helped us. Our CO's Women's Organization does a semi-annual rummage sale both as a fundraiser and community service. In the past few years a few Scouts showing up at the end to help clean up has done wonders for our reputation at the church. All of a sudden any little wear and tear on the building is just seen as boys being boys. Most churches I have seen are really run by the women, regardless of what the official leadership may think.


        • #5
          Well, first of all, congratulations, Mr. Cubmaster.

          Others with more experience will probably chime in with better information, but here's what I would do personally in your situation.

          First, do your best to maintain cordial relations with your CO. Obviously, they don't view themselves as the "owner" of the Pack. Many CO's are in that same category, and it can still work well. If paying deposits are burdensome, then start shopping around for alternate meeting places. On the other hand, I would try to keep at least _some_ meetings taking place at their facility, just so that you can continue to foster whatever "ownership" interest they might still have.

          I would consider doing some sort of service project on their behalf. For example, our Pack raked leaves at our CO, even though they are also very hands off.

          It would be nice if they provided more resources, but they are doing a favor by signing the charter renewal every year. So if you can't get more, make sure you at least preserve that.

          And please, stop tossing pebbles at their windows.

          But I would also start discretly putting out feelers at other potential CO's, and see if one of them might be interested. Obviously, the existing one doesn't take much "ownership" interest. And it's possible that at some point in the future, they will be presented with a charter renewal and decide not to sign it. So having other options available might be prudent.

          I would try to get a committee going, and try to interest someone in taking the role of committee chair (CC). Even though you probably have an "official" CC, it sounds like you're really doing that job right now, which isn't really the best way of doing things. If your existing CC isn't up to the task, then I would get the process going by holding "monthly parent meetings" of all interested parents. Slowly but surely you could get the parents who show up at these meetings to become registered members, at which point you will have a committee.


          • #6
            Do you know who your chartered organization rep. (COR) is? I would have the 3 of you sit down and discuss the concerns. Explain what the Pack provides and the benefit to the youth. Some of your comments indicate that the CO doesn't understand the nature of the relationship. Asking for a security deposit is nonsensical. The pack is an arm of their organization, and any money that the pack were to provide is technically the CO's. Show them that whatever problems they had are in the past and that this is a worthwhile program for them to support.

            Let them know that BSA has insurance, if something is broken, you can put in a claim to BSA.
            This is inaccurate. The CO is is the chartered partner and party to the contract with the local council. BSA liability insurance is for claims by 3rd parties. Convince them that you have the trained leadership in place to supervise activities. There is always some risk that something might get broken, as with any program, but those risks are outweighed by the benefits of scouting.


            • #7
              Yeah, The Blancmange, I wrote that just before leaving work, I was just thinking window, and remembered an incident where insurance kicked in for a similar problem with a window.. On the way home, I thought about the ownership angle, and that insurance wouldn't pay for something that happened to the owners property.