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    • Online accessibility is definitely a problem -- even if we have parents who would allow the patrol to have the tech. For example, my solution (or any of the other cloud related solutions that I've proposed) requires the scouts be at lest 13. Works great for a crew or ship, not so much for a young patrol in a troop. In this case, I think Field Notes (it's actually a brand, but scouts could make their own) are a good idea. The youth would maintain the records required by their position, then at meetings have a responsible adult snap a picture and save it to the cloud. Actually, you don't even need to be net dependent. there are lot's of old scanners and workstations with a good many years of working life remaining. (Our Goodwill actually has a store dedicated to them.) Cloud storage is nice, but probably overkill for what most troops need. I honestly think paper + digital image backup is the ideal mode of operations for 21st century groups.
    • Scoutreach is a great program. But each one has its own unique circumstances. Is your focus urban or rural? They carry different challenges.  The biggest thing is to keep a GREAT Scout spirit and an attitude of perseverance. Remember, what you are doing is very important and could very well change the lives of youth in our area.  I say that because it can be a daunting task, due to socioeconomic, geographic and other issues. Be prepared to, and know you WILL, fail at times. The key is to pick yourself up and continue to move toward the goals you have set. Goals? Yes, goals. Make a plan on what your team wants to accomplish and a plan on how to get there, and a back plan as well.  Packs, Troops and Crews will spin up and down faster than other areas, so stay on top of things so you can see the possible problems that may crop up and deal with them in a timely manner. But don't beat yourself up if you miss some, you will, no matter how hard you try. Of all the programs in Scouting I have worked on, this is the toughest, but possibly the most rewarding.  I went into Scoutreach as an experienced Scouter thinking I would set the world on fire. Looking back at the end of that first year was sobering. I realized I needed a much more sound plan to move forward. Things have worked out much better since then. But better is relative. Scoutreach is a long term strategy, success is less frequent, and success today does not guarantee success tomorrow. Savor your successes, learn form the failures and keep keep moving forward and remember it is all about the youth you serve. You will get to see things many of us take for granted, the pride in a uniform, a youth getting out of the concrete jungle and into the wood for the first time, the look in youths eyes at a Summer camp or high adventure experience, the first Eagle Scout (or even Scout) in a family and more. If you have specific questions, I will be glad to help. The hard work is well worth it.  Good luck!
    • What can the scouts do to take ownership at the patrol level? What can the troop Scribe do to fulfill his POR?
    • (Side note: I keep laughing because our new SM is a fan of the adult beverage of the same name. So, deep breath, get beyond the sillies ....) Yes, recognizing the different ways that others hew to ideals is a big "reward" in the scout who does it. Usually that scout is in the middle of his/her teen years, and isolation will be a threat to his psyche for the next two or three decades. One form of isolation is thinking that you are the "last good man/woman" standing. By looking out for the good in others, you discover that that's not true. You'll find someone working through their ideals to everyone's mutual benefit and be uplifted. That's why "recognition" is specifically a method of venturing: it's synergistic with "ideals" and essential in the life of a maturing teen.
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