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    • I understand BSA does not give a lot of direction on this issue but I am trying not to recreate the wheel for our 1st year committee. When it comes to spending money on purchases, does your committee always vote? Our committee wants to buy some tents for our new troop for few hundred dollars. Trying to get us to decide on 2-3 tents is as hard as trying to get a bunch of scouts to decided on the same - too many options, too many opinions. As such, we are now weeks into discussion without new tents. For this and other items, how does your committee handle it? Does someone eventually just make the decision or are you able to come to consensus? I don't want to steamroll the other members but I also don't want paralysis by analysis. On a side note, know of any good tents for sale? 😵   Ideally, we have them in hand a week from how for our COH.
    • A nice set of lightweight (carbon fiber) trekking poles would go great with those boots.  Unlike the boots, you can adjust the trekking poles, so they will not outgrow them in 6 months.😃  
    • Good hiking boots would be a good gift also.  Sadly I am not sure if my sons feet are done growing yet.  He will be 13 in March and is in a men's size 11 shoe.   
    • The International Scout Organization (scout.org) has a membership report that lists numbers of registered scouts in each country with a national scouting organization.  The report (as of December 31, 2016), shows six countries had a scouting organization with more than 1 million registered members. 1.  Indonesia:  21,599,748 2. India:  3,647, 843 3. United States (BSA): 2,536,872 4. Philippines:  1,934,255 5. Kenya:  1,312,422 6. Bangladesh: 1,112,293   Source Report:
      https://www.scout.org/sites/default/files/library_files/Grand Total Membership with Genders at 31 Dec 2016_0.pdf 
    • I agree fully. I've told this story many times, but it seems to apply a lot; after the scouts went to their activities on a campout, I was walking a trail with an ASM that had joined 6 months earlier. He had also been on 6 camp outs so far. I asked him what he thought of our troop after six months, he said, "I'm surprise to learn that even though the adults try to keep a measurable out-of-sight distance away from the scouts, their behavior very much mimics the adults'. Role modeling is very powerful and their attitudes of everything will eventually be seen through the scouts. Even if the adults detest the uniform, but force themselves to wear it, their scouts will eventually express (or expose) the adults hypocrisy. Which is why I agree with ParkMan's other point, "As Scoutmaster you want adult support for transformative decisions.". The more successful troops recruit adult staffs who agree with the Scoutmaster's program. All in, or not welcome, is the unmentioned rule of successful units because while Scoutmasters can verbally direct scouts to act like scouts, a cohesive scout culture intuitively builds the scouts naturally. I learned over the years of observing troops that the two most challenging methods for both the adults and scouts is "Uniforming" and "Advancement". Ironically the reason those methods are a challenge is because each group have apposing priorities for using the methods in their scouting experiences. Adults typically want uniforming and advancement for their vanity of showing off the idealistic scout. Uniforming and advancement are just bothersome actions that get in the way of the adventure youth want from the scouting program. The purity of role modeling is the middle ground where the two groups come together, even they don't see it. So, the more pure the program goals are for the scouts, the more pure the adults will role model the program. And the more authentic the scouting experience will be for the scouts.  Barry
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