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Thanking leaders @ Summer Camp....what would u like?

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  • Thanking leaders @ Summer Camp....what would u like?

    I am a COR of a pack, troop and crew. Most of the leadership attending summer camp with the youth take a week of their vacation time in order to attend. I like to find ways, at summer camp, to thank them for volunteering. As an aside - the summer camp the troop attends most of the time is patrol cooking for every meal - which means the adults also function as a patrol and do all of their own cooking and cleanup. The pack eats in a dining hall.

    Things I have done in the past include
    - Cooking 2 or 3 large dutch ovens of lasagna from scratch, french bread and a salad. I take care of all of the cooking and cleanup.
    - On Friday afternoon, while everyone is out doing the mile swim, silver bullet, golden arrow and scoutmaster belly flop, I setup a giant nacho bar with all the fixings. They can make burritos, nachos, whatever when they get back.
    - Create a dessert bar one evening - cobbler (of course) with ice cream, pound cake, a bunt cake, or something out of the ordinary I can find a recipe for.
    - Take the boys out to earn their forestry activity pin, while the dads all stay back at camp and take a nap (usually a couple of other packs join me)
    - Take the boys on a night hike while any leader who wants to stay back and relax around the campfire without any youth around, may do so
    - Take the boys geode or arrow head hunting on an afternoon to give the dads some down time.

    You get the idea - what I am looking for are other ideas. What have other leaders in your unit done for you while @ camp to say thank you OR what would you like to see done given a "perfect" world for you at camp to make your week just that much better.


  • #2
    I think adults would appreciate going to camp for no cost. They are already giving their time.

    My .02


    • #3
      HMMMM tricky.

      One of the best thank you's I ever had was having staff work with our troops one nite while all the adults in camp went to a lodge at another part of camp where the SE cooked us some steaks and gave us the opportunity to not only enjoy a great meal, but also talk about improving camp. Being a young, growing leader who has been on the COPE course that week, I ate two 16 ounce steaks as I was hungry.

      3 years later when I was at PDL he remembered me b/c I ate two steaks.

      Besides paying for them, I think you got winners all along.


      • #4
        Our camp is not far away. I'm going for the week and a couple otehr leaders will be rotating. The committee, unbeknownst to me decided to cover my camp fee. That was great.


        • #5
          I think the best thank you I could get would be a sincere handshake and word of thanks from the Scouts.

          While we all hope our Scouts are thoughtful enough to do that on their own, we need to acknowledge we are here to teach the boys to be Scout-like -- they don't necessarily show up that way on day one. As the COR, you're in a good position to plant a seed or two for that sort of thank you.


          • #6
            what your doing is excessive.......

            Picking up their camp fee and saying thank you at a court of honor is enough.


            • #7
              A few things I thought of:

              1) Framed photes with all the scouts' signatures on the back.

              2) Camp T-shirt with signatures on the back.


              • #8
                I love the idea of cooking them a meal or giving them the opportunity to take a nap. I'm always grateful when someone offers to teach my boy something new. If you want to give them a trinket, I like the photo much better than the certificate. I always seem to receive certificates which look great in my scrapbook, but a photo would look even better. Be sure to include names, the date and the place on the back of the photo or the frame. Signed tshirts are a great idea, and don't forget patches, scouters love patches. I received a small leatherman tool at the last leader meeting I attended. The scouter who organized the meeting worked for leahterman, so he was able to get some small tools donated. He had invited a couple hundred cub scouters to a presentation designed to inspire them regarding a spring time recruitment drive.


                • #9
                  Sand Hill Scout Reservation does not charge a fee for the first two leaders. Since it is policy to maintain 2-deep leadership we realize the commitment that the adults must make to attend camp. If additonal adults want to come to camp for the week, we charge a reduced rate of $75.

                  Adults that stay the full week get a gift from the camp. It's been stainless steel coffeee mugs, or laptop bags. On Thursday nights we take sliced, chilled watermelon to every troop in camp and thank them for coming.


                  • #10
                    Get to know the crew officers and help them arrange a dinner in which the recognize their advisors.

                    The recognition itself can be as simple as a toast or a song.

                    No plaques, please.


                    • #11
                      Last summer, our troop instituted a fee per night for adults (the troop, not the camp) to, apparently, make camp cheaper for the kids, as well as dissuade too many adults from just coming and overtaxing the accommodations. For me, I'm on a limited income, and when it comes to Scouts, I don't give to FOS, I don't go to the expensive council dinners, etc. I give my time, my experience, and my efforts for the boys. I suspect many adults have the same attitude, and many have the same predicament.

                      Even beyond that, I find it a bit odd for adults to be charged for volunteering their time, especially when many are taking valuable vacation days to be there to facilitate a great, safe, and supervised experience for the boys.(This message has been edited by Bando)


                      • #12
                        I still treasure (and use) an old school coffee mug that was given to me when I was SM at camp 25+ years ago. It was a standard mug with the camp emblem plus "thanks" and the year included. Simple, useful, and given in a heartfelt manner.

                        Concur with with paying all or part of the leaders' fees--great idea.


                        • #13
                          our camp does a SM meal - they normally cook up some nice chops and the boys that have been working on cooking MB cook up some great desserts in the dutch ovens. we get a little "trinket" but last couple of years it hasn't been that great of one. and we all fill out evaluation forms.

                          from the troop - they cover the cost for adults, though a little worried as this year we have more adults than normal and more than we need so hopefully that doesn't end. We have a family night potluck on thursday night and the parents coming up will bring along extra food for the adults that are staying and don't have family coming up - plus dishes for us to use.

                          if we did patrol cooking - having someone come up each night with a meal for us would be great, but we have dining hall so it wouldn't be necessary. time for naps - we actually have a good routine of who naps when and who showers when too so coming up for that isn't really necesary. the camp we attend gives free camp shirts if you sign up by a certain date and we always make that so we get a shirt.

                          really I can't think of anything, but any sort of thanks is great - especially for those that take the week of off work. I don't work so that isn't something I have to worry about, and now that my other child is old enough my husband doesn't even have to take time off though if he comes up for family night he'll take a 1/2 day.


                          • #14
                            At our camp they take a group picture at the opening flag ceremony, when everyone is still looking good in uniform. At the end of camp the leader receives a print of this picture in a frame that incorporates a digital clock, alarm, and thermometer. I'm looking at 3 of them on my desk right now! It's a great way to remember the camp, and more importantly, your scouts.


                            Hey - that was my 1000th Post! YAY!!!!!(This message has been edited by eagle90)


                            • #15
                              Dale, great suggestion and congrats on 1000!

                              This is 1000 for me too!