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Jeffrey H

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Everything posted by Jeffrey H

  1. I served as a CM for 2.5 very active years. It was fun, but I needed to step away and transition out earlier than I had originally planned. I gave 3 month notice to the Pack. I let the Pack Committee and Pack leadership know of my resignation date and how I could help with a transition of leadership. Fortunately, our Assistant Cubmaster was more than happy to step up and the transition went pretty smoothly. That said, if no one had been willing to step-up and take my place, I was going to have to leave anyway. Those that were considered good candidates for CM were approached individually
  2. I could not have devoted my time as Cubmaster without the loving support of my wife. She was not registered with the Pack, not on the Pack committee, but she morally supported me. It is critical to have that support if you care about your marriage. Awards are nice, but make sure that you take her on a very nice date(s). Spend your money and time on her.
  3. Had a similar experience in my Pack. Eagle Scouts that sign-up as leaders are no guarantee of good performance.
  4. We use PackMaster (Cub Scout version of Troopmaster) and it does a good job. No complaints.
  5. Did not know the commitee guidebook had such low expectations of an outdoor program.
  6. Agree with others. The uniform requirement "while traveling so you can be insured by the BSA" is a myth that appears to have no end in sight. The uniform is not required to a member of the BSA or participate in BSA activities, therefore members out-of-uniform will receive BSA insurance coverage. We wear the uniform to proudly identify ourselves as members of the BSA, but that's about it. Whatever your Pack decides to do regarding the uniform is up to your Pack. Have a great outing!
  7. Our council provides scholarships for camps, registrations fees, and uniforms based on financial need. Scholarhsip forms are filled out confidentially by families and submitted to the council office. Direct financial assistance from our Pack is done on a confidential case-by-case basis. These are rare occurrences since families can pay for most of the cost of the Pack through participation in our annual fundraiser.
  8. Viewing the video, I would say they were having quite a "joy ride." Safety for the kids? Yea, right. Two lessons here: 1) Don't break the law and respect nature. 2) If you can't follow #1, remember that everyone has a video camera on their cell phones and they can feed it to social media pretty quick.
  9. I prefer open water with a course. It's easier to "fudge" the rules in a swimming pool so it should a last resort for a mile swim. If using a pool, judging should be diligent (i.e., no touching the bottom, no touching the sides). I agree that making the turns at every end of the pool is tiring because momentun is lost and has to be re-gained which makes it an equalizing factor. As a last resort, swimming pools are sometimes needed in some areas because of low lake levels that occur during extended periods of summer drought. Extended periods of drought sometimes bring harmful bacteria
  10. The age of the cub scout has first priority when determing what den he should placed in. If he is held back a grade in school, he should not be held back in scouts. He moves on with his peers as he becomes a year older. A good guideline is this: When they become 9 years old before school starts by September 1st, they should be starting in a Webelos Den.
  11. Trail Life will work out just fine and be great for some folks. It will grow but will likely remain small compared to the BSA. The BSA, on the other hand, has it's own issues and bloated professional bureauracy that takes the joy out of doing volunteer work. I will not miss FOS campaigns and always wondering why the money is being wasted.
  12. This happened to us a few years ago and were concerned that we would have a gap. The next year, quite a few 2nd grade boys joined up and filled the gap and one of the dads volunteered to be the den leader. Long story short, the gap closed. As long as you emphasize good recruiting each year, you should be fine. As others have mentioned, occassionaly we will have Tiger recruits that will drop out withing a few weeks because their parents cannot be Tiger Partners and be at every meeting and event.
  13. You really only need to know a few knots for camping and backpacking: Square, double half-hitch, taut-line, overhand, etc. The ones I use the most are the ones I remember. I keep a field manual with me for the ones I use rarely. The same with scouts - If they go camping frequently, they will get it through practice. If they are parlor scouts, they will forget. Self-reliance in the outdoors is a major mark of a Scout and knowing knots are essential to that end.
  14. Are Scouts receiving merit badges that are not earned? Yes. It does happen. The quality control of issuing merit badges to the boys rests with the diligence and honesty of theTroop program.
  15. Respectfully ask the the new recruit if his religion will conflict with staying in the Boy Scouts. Then, when the opportunity presents itself, you can have a respectful conversation with his parents. It's possible that his family's JW convictions may be weak and they are thinking about leaving the religious group. I would accept him in the Troop if he is willing to follow the joining requirements. How far he will go with the Troop is up to him and his family.
  16. How your Pack spends it's money is up to the Pack Committee and/or your Charter Org. Our Pack's budget focuses on the cub scouts. The only part of our budget that involves spending on adults is our annual end of year picnic for our pack families and a small amount on leader appreciation gifts. There is nothing wrong spending a little money on appreciation gifts or even a meal or two for your tireless adult volunteers, but be careful. Too much spending on "non-scouts" can have a negative perception among the parents and the possibly your local community.
  17. Yep. You can give directly to a Troop but it may not be tax-deductible if that is what you are looking for. Discuss that with a professional tax preparer or CPA.
  18. Technically, parent pins are not supposed to be on the uniform per the Guide. That said, our parent/leaders wear them on and it looks okay. I don't call them out on it because I have more important things to to deal with - thank goodness! I guess you can say I'm "looking the other way" in regards to the uniform guide, but It's a "guide" not a rule book. I try to lead by example myself and I follow the uniform guide but I back off other leaders when they take a few liberties with their uniform.
  19. You are correct in your decision to step aside and do less. You are burned-out and frustrated. In every Pack, like many volunteer organizations, there is the 80-20 rule: 20% of the people do 80% of the work. That's the way it is. Be grateful to those that step-up and don't worry about those that don't do anything. Quite frankly, some of the parents are better off not helping out - Trust me on that one. As Cubmaster, I don't want some parents at events because they do nothing but complain. I would rather have a few "happy" volunteers than a bunch of grumpy warm bodies hanging around.
  20. This history of archery is the history of hunting for animals for food and clothing. Use animal targets if so desired.
  21. The troop I was in as a Youth in the 70's did nothing but "primitive camping" meaning no running water was available, no bathrooms to walk to, no electricity to hook up to anything. We had to build fires if we wanted to cook even in rainy weather (yes, you can get a fire started from wet wood). We did not cancel campouts due to inclement weather. Yes, we did leave camp one time for shelter due to a very severe thunderstorm but we never canceled an outing. We had better outdoor skills and training because it was forced upon us. We sometimes backpacked into our campsites. Building self-rel
  22. Yep. We welcome all faiths and no-faith. All people are God's creation and must be honored with respect and dignity. Attendance at our Scout's Own services are optional and we only do them maybe twice a year. When we do them, they reflect the values and beliefs of our Church Charter Organization.
  23. Which part is not true? The BSA is not Christian because it does not have a Christian confession of faith, nor any confession of faith. The only thing that could considered faith-oriented is the "duty to God" component of the Scout Oath.
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