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Amangi Mizin

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About Amangi Mizin

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  1. @ Tolka, Nice to talk to another VP of Program... Its more difficult than you think as the Council Commissioner is my father. I'm not having difficulties with my volunteers but as you know, council events reap no benefit "on paper" toward JTE. We can put on the best Merit Badge University or Parent and Pal Cub Scout weekend but that doesn't keep the kids involved in their units it takes a quality unit program. My committees want to reduce our council events and concentrate on unit program to keep kids engaged and involved. Perhaps those are portions of the commissioners duties but does any council truly have a core of commissioners who help build program, help with finances, makes sure units are advancing, and keep leaders trained and up to date in each of their units? Its a lot to expect out of one commissioner. I think of it like this; If you consider a unit a car then my committees would be tools for the mechanic who is the commissioner. The mechanic can assess the situation and pick which tool he needs to fix the car but the mechanic has to have the tools. Almost like a matrix style management where each committee has a chair but each member can be pulled onto a project(unit program issue) lead by the commissioning staff. But thats a perfect world with a functioning commissioner. Not always the case.
  2. Volunteer Recruiting Methods... 1. Work as hard as the people you ask to volunteer and make sure they see it. Its not showing off it helps people get a feel for the level of effort you expect and that they are not alone in working hard for the cause. 2. Give praise were praise is due. 3. Make sure they understand their part in the grand picture and that they've bought into it. 4. Start new people out small (staffing a single event) and challenge them to progress. I've had many that went from staffing an event to running it in 2 years. I've had people run an event to running a committee. 5. Push what positions you need filled but take any volunteer that wants to work. With that said be there if they change their minds or want to move up in the volunteer ranks in another path. 6. Something I think is important is being there for transitions. I lost my cub scout program chair and I sat in on 4 meetings making sure it moved forward as well as convinced a person they could handle the meetings since they did so well running our Parent and Pal weekends. It took 4 meetings of hand holding but he is up and running now. 7. Guilt can be a powerful tool  Hope those help.
  3. @ SeattlePioneer Not to go off topic but the reason we are looking at this change is the JTE. My Program committees (We have them broken down differently than the regular 4 committees) put on great events but they are tired of reaping no benefit in terms of the JTE (minus my camping, advancement and training committees) Right now our roundtables are non-existent. Most commissioners are in name only and the ones that are active aren't equipped to handle all the needs of the units. It has been my and my chair's hope that if they send some of their committee members into the units themselves, the scouts will benefit more. This group also wants to put on monthly program meetings focusing on training, activities, advancement, etc... just like roundtables do. Thanks for the compliment on attracting volunteers. In the 3 years Ive been VP weve gone from 3 active committees consisting of 19 people to 9 committees with 44 members. This change if it does occur wont happen until 2014 so we are still in the discussion mode but I still think to ask one committee like my Boy Scout Program committee to run 6 events a year when troops are still losing member or lacking in program, an incorrect use of volunteers.
  4. I'm VP of Program for council. I consider events anything outside of summer camp that's a 1 - 3 day event. We serve roughly 1400 scouts in the council but events range in size from 60 to around 200 participants. These do not include OA events either. Thanks for everyone's continued responses. These help. My committee chairs and I are discussing a program transition; having less council events and using those volunteers to reinforce the roundtable program and provide an "extension" service where my program committees will visit units to help with their finances, training, membership, program, etc.
  5. Hello All, My committee and I are thinking about reducing the number of events we have on a council level (very small council so no district events). I am interested in how many events other councils/districts have each year. Here are my numbers Boy Scout 6 Cub Scouts 5 Venturing 1 Misc 1
  6. I would like to know how many events your district has for Boy Scouting and Cub Scouting and how it fairs with mine. We are doing 6 BS events and 5 CS events a year. These our council events but since my council is about the size of most districts, I would ask it in that manner. I personally believe this is too much and would like to trim it to 3 a year for each. (Fall, Winter, and Spring event each) There are multiple reasons for trimming it down (lack of volunteers, resources required to plan, budget, and staff, not required for JTE, etc.) but I would like everyones opinion.
  7. All, Just wondering is there a set "term limit" for Council Presidents, VP, Council Comissioner, etc. If not is there any recommendations on term limits that councils have imposed?
  8. MattR, TO Answer your questions Do you want to take this on and how much time and effort do you want to put into it? - I want to see the lodge be successful and serve the youth, the council and camp so whatever it takes, we are in the long hall. Given that you have 20-30 adults that get things done (a really great resource, by the way), do you think they'd be willing to change the way they do things? Would they listen to you? Could you get them together to brainstorm ideas? Not to brag but they would listen to me. My family is well known in the council and they all have seen me grow up in the lodge. How many of these adults work well with scouts? - That is a great point. Some are good and others are not. Thats why they need a "point man" that can work well with the youth. How many scouts are there that you'd call leaders? Self motivated, dedicated, confident, team players? - 5 Roughly speaking, the goal is to get more scouts to see what the OA scouts are doing and say to themselves "I'd like to do that." Do you have ideas that you know will work to achieve that? Can you keep the scouts around for, say, at least 4 or 5 meetings? We have lost a lot of our leadership that promoted it... thats the problem. It is coming back through marketing, wearing the sash, and having activities during council events. Can you simplify what the OA is responsible for down to the point where the scouts you have can be successful without burnout? - Also very hard. With a small council, OA is depended on for council event staffing, fundraising help, etc. Looking at some other posts I do like the idea of combining events to help reduce burnout.
  9. Shortridge - Of course the youth comes first. The adults are always there for the youth but just giving an example, Brotherhood weekend we might have 20 youth arrowman and 10 members going through their Brotherhood. We will have 30 adults there. 3 adults in the kitchen, 1 adult with the brotherhood weekend chief, 1 helping with the ceremonial team, and 1 helping with Nimats. We usually have the 4 or 5 that just want to drink coffee and converse but that leaves 20 adults for the weekend. Instead of 20 adults nagging the youth where can they help and overwhelming the brotherhood cheif, now through the committee the committee chair is directed (By the LEC and brotherhood chief) what tasks to do, review upcoming events and potential concerns to lift to the LEC, review "pet projects" on the LECs to-do list to see if they can help (an example coming to mind is a display case for our lodges headdress used in the first ceremony). The committee organizes the work and breaks the committee into groups to work on different issues. They don't work independently without LEC approval just like any other committee in the lodge... they just happen to be adults. I agree the youth always come first but if they don't call upon the adults to help or they use a select 6 or 7 adults, how else do you fulfill the needs of the other adult arrowmen looking to serve?
  10. Thanks for the responses. To clarify this is a group of adult arrowman who were tired of coming to meetings and events with nothing to do. They approached the LEC and asked if they could form a committee to organize themselves to better serve the youth like rotating kitchen duty, being advisers for events and committees, things of that nature. We are a small lodge and about 15 adults could handle that but with 30 active adults and growing, that is why they took on more tasks... with the approval of the LEC. Seattle - to your comment, most of these guys are district and executive board members who love the OA and use this to "get their hands dirty" and do front line community service and helping the youth... something they don't get to do much when you are a board member. I think they would stay away from FOS and things of that nature cause they already deal with that on a larger scale. I'm just wondering what other lodges with large active adults use them for other than trade skills.
  11. With OA membership in my lodge approaching 50/50 youth and adult, the adults want to take on more items. We have formed an adult committee were we assign advisors to all committees and events. Adults help advise every aspect of the lodge but thats not enough for some. The committee now has brought up having adult committee work days and adult committee picnics. It is slowing becoming like an Elks Lodge or Lions Club but interest is growing as adults now have functions, focuses, and are active. I know in other councils Woodbadge seems to be the social club of the council but OA is much stronger here. The adults are always there when the OA youth need it but only a handful of adults are ever asked by the youth to assist well short of the amount of active adult members. Is there anything wrong with this? Are we as a lodge sliding down a slippery slope?
  12. Im sure I will get crucified for saying it but I would like an honest discussion about it Our lodge has gone through many ebbs and flows in youth leadership. We are starting into a dry spell which is causing membership to decline. We have the same 20 30 adults that make up the core group of the OA that keeps the lodge moving. At our low points, we have adults running activities, keeping track of membership, fundraising for the lodge, etc. Then after a year or so a strong leader comes in and starts taking back youth functions as he builds a strong LEC. I am one of those adults and we have gone through this probably 4 times since I was an Ordeal member in the early 90s. [side note: Does anyone else see this? Do you agree/disagree with our approach?] The reason I bring it up is because this might be the worst one yet and even our core group of arrowman are getting older, tired of caring the lodge, and are not sure we can survive the drought. What happens if we just abandon our adult leader role and go into adviser mode? Is it worth loosing the lodge over youth run policy?
  13. My grandfather had a broken arrow ceremony preformed and we did one just last year for an arrowman that has gone home. Just some things to think about or ask your group... 1. Did they confirm the arrow they are using? - Both people we have done it for had arrows specified. My grandfather had his from his Ordeal. The other, an arrow from his regalia as a boy. 2. Does the family want a part in the ceremony? - For one, the family wanted to pass the arrow to the characters, in my grandfathers ceremony, they brought it out with them. Just a couple things to think about.
  14. Like I said in a previous string, my lodge continues to tap out however it is closely monitored. The youth have found a way to cup their hands to make it sound like the whacking I received when I was tapped out. Id have to agree with Mr Boyce, it wasnt hazing when I was put in. As a mater of fact you only got a hammering tap if the chief liked you and thought you would make a great arrowmen which inspired a lot of youth.
  15. John-in-KC, the answer to all your questions is a resounding yes except for the election team. They are trained but not well and a place for improvement in our lodge. In our council, the OA is the work horse. They are the ones who staff camporees, maintain camp, initiate and sometimes fund camp projects, run council fundraisers, and make up 80% of the camp staff. Because of this, The Supreme Chief of the Fire (SCOTF) (aka the council exec) and other adult advisors keeps a close eye on the lodge and the SCOTF does have veto power but thats another hot item with me too so I wont go there. Quality lodge is pushed by the SCOTF and the section. I agree with emb021s take on the section and yes our lodge does have a make-up ordeal and brotherhood weekend. Im glad to hear that not everyone is concerned with numbers. Unfortunately financial issues and recruitment reign supreme in my council and I think it hurts the quality of the program.
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