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How does Camp Staff get treated?

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  • How does Camp Staff get treated?

    While posting in the 4th of July topic, I was thinking of several conversations I had with staffers this past week at our local Cub Scout Camp. I have heard them tell stories of thier being treated as the baby-sitter or even worse by the adult leaders in the Packs. I heard several tell me that when the go to camp sites for Pack Out night (The Pack cooks dinner in the camp site for the boys) they are often ignored by the leaders or expected to cook dinner for and entertain the boys while the adults relax.
    Is this normal? Is this your experience?
    We treat our staffers that show up as honored guests, they are served dinner with the boys (before the leaders) and are welcome to participate in the evening's fun as their spirit moves them. Now we are known as a fun bunch and attract a bunch of staffers for that reason but I feel we just treat them nice, nothing special, is this now "special treatment?"

  • #2
    Sounds like a failure of the Camp Program Director and Camp Director to establish expected behavior standards and expectations.


    • #3
      For parents night, we invited any camp staff that we or our scouts worked directly with, and those who didn't have other plans or invites to join us for dinner.

      When those who accepted our invites showed up, we intruduced them as our honored guests, let them be the first to get served, and talked and chatted with them after eating while the boys played capture the flag.

      A few nights later, we invited those same staff members for our cookies ice cream social. SM went out and bought a bunch of ice cream, topings, and cookies on his own dime.

      During the friday night campfire, we gave troop made individually personalized mementoes ( leather necklaces ) to the PD, CD and the staff that our boys worked with.

      But I do suppose how you treat the staff is entirely dependant on how they treated you.

      Our camp staff was entirely professional - with the exception of one who tried to bribe the scouts out of doing his job by signing off the weeks worth of MB cards on the first day so he could play ultimate frisbee - so we gave them the respect that the earned and deserved.


      • #4
        When I worked staff back in the day, leaders were in charge of their units, particularly in their campsites. We were program resources and instructors, and visitors/guests in the site.

        The exception was the staffer assigned to each pack/camp den, known as a program specialist / cowpoke / squire / first mate, depending on camp theme. That person came pretty close to living with their den, leading them from place to place, singing songs, organizing games, carrying water cups in a backpack, helping them navigate camp rules, etc. We realized that most Cub parents had never done this before, and in many cases were utterly untrained in the ways of Scouting, if the DL or CM was unable to attend.

        Perhaps the units in question had previously attended a camp like that.

        That said, I'd consider that type of chatter and gossip unprofessional. Staffers aren't supposed to tell stories about other units like that. It'd be like your doctor complaining about his previous patient. Just isn't done.


        • #5
          Well, I would consider it unprofessional if they gossiped about pack 325 doing such-and-such.. And the CM of pack 522 being a lazy and loud..

          But, and overall general statement of "We enjoy visiting your group, because you treat us so great.. Most times, this happens.." is not telling tales on specific units.


          • #6
            No, it's not, but it's still unprofessional. Comes across as complaining and even whining. A far cry from the positive attitude staffers are supposed to present to campers.


            • #7
              OK -- never though this would go down this road but I will supply more information to set at ease those that feel the staffers are telling tales out of school, the staffers that told me this were, respectfully, 2 eagles out of the sister troop that the adult leaders going had known for over 4 years, a personal family friend of mine that I have known for 15+ years and a former student of mine that I have stayed in contact with through scouting for the last 5 years, these were not people we had just met and no idenities were released to protect the guilty. It was more friends talking about they days at work than staff/campers.


              • #8
                Once posted, you never know where the trail will wander.. We may end up examining the plumbing under your kitchen sink before we are done here.