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Posts posted by misnwyo

  1. Bob and "Fat",


    Thanks for the replies. I guess a little more description is in order....


    Fat, right now, we have two Webelos I patrols - one with 17 boys and two leaders, and the other with 15 boys and two leaders. We realistically need to create two more patrols for Web I.


    Doubling up leaders to take the slack off the leadership responsibilities is paramount here at Yongsan. While I'm a civilian here, a lot of people are military and go TDY (short trips with work) a lot. Having two leaders keeps the dens moving if one leader is out for a short period of time. Everyone, including me, goes TDY quite regularly.


    Another problem: the military has a one-year cycle of rotation for soldiers here. This year, due to leaders leaving the pack, we started our pack of 111 registered boys with FIVE experienced leaders with a total of 9 years of experience between us. We have 14 dens in our pack, and so far, nearly all of our volunteer leadership has come from parents and or outside adults who have stepped forward. Only two of our newly attracted leaders have prior Scout leadership experience. Parents have stepped forward to help with the dens on an ad hoc basis, but again, the help is spotty due to travel and military exercise scenarios.


    Bob, to answer your question - We have gone to all the pack parents for help. We have sent flyers to the PTO (our version of the PTA) and have canvassed command offices for help from single or unaccompanied soldiers. We have gone to churches, talked with NCO and VFW clubs, and have registered with the Army Community Center's volunteer program to attract volunteers. I have even spoken with the commander of the Army support command and with other youth groups here at Yongsan to try to attract help. Suffice to say that when I claim that we've exhausted our possibilities for attracting leadership, I mean it.


    We normally don't have the usual family support structure here on post.... meaning that we can't contact grandparents, former scouts who are now adults, college volunteers, etc. We are a rather small, compact "town" of Americans here in the heart of Seoul. Scouting is also not the only youth activity here on post that requires a broad level of adult volunteer support. BSA gets intense competition for leadership from organized sports, church youth activities, PTO (98% parent support), Jr. ROTC, and other youth clubs such as Girl Scouts, 4H and the Army's School Age Service programs. Added to this is the fact that we do live on an Army base. Like it or not, the needs of the Army on everyone here comes first, meaning that everyone's job comes first. More than several den meetings have been cancelled due to a leader being called to the field or TDY on short notice.


    The other packs in the area are LDS sponsored, and these packs tend to place some serious restrictions on scouts and leadership from "outside" influences who want to join them. A case in point is that this year, the LDS decided not to serve Tiger Cubs. The result? We got 14 Tigers from the LDS packs integrated into our pack. As you may guess, the LDS leaders - in deciding not to support Tigers in their packs - sent their boys to us, and have decided not to supported us either.


    We received all of our current leaders over a month ago, and in the last 45 days have not been able to attract another leader, despite the searches through some pretty creative channels as illustrated above. Our pack has reached the point of critical mass here with Web I boys, and with nearly two months of the Scout year lost, if we continue with the numbers we have, the program will suffer. Our Web I leaders are inexperienced, and have drawn the line on the sheer number of boys.... and I can't blame them.


    Now you know the story. So my question again: where does there exist a set of guidelines or an SOP that addresses what the BSA's rights are in turning boys away from a pack (hopefully to another pack). Parents have been appraised of what the pack's plans are going to be, with vigorous complaints from some parents who simply will not become leaders to support their son's program. Again, we have at least three parents who can't understand why the scouts with parents in leadership positions within the pack get first dibs to stay in the Web I program. Logic should tell them that if a boy with a parent who is involved in the pack is cast out in favor of a boy with a parent that will not become a leader, then we're back to square one with a lack of leadership. Some boys have to go if we can't find leadership. Some of the parents do believe that we're a babysitting organization.... plain and simple.


    Anyone's help in finding guidelines would be apprciated.


    Ken Ferris

    Cubmaster, Pack 89

  2. I'm a Cubmaster with Pack 89, Korea District, Far East Council.


    Our pack went from 56 boys last year to 111 boys this year. (All packs should be so blessed.) Our problem is that we have a lack of leadership for our Webelos patrols, and with two months down on our Scout year, we've exhausted our possibilities for leadership, and will have to turn boys away to other packs in the area, or turn them away completely.


    Several parents of the Webelos have expressed their dissatisfaction at our decision to turn boys away (but of course quiet down immediately when it is suggested that they become leaders to remedy the problem...) I want to make sure that our pack is conducting this action in a fair and equitable way. I'm certain that BSA guidelines exist on this subject, but I sure can't find them online.


    Common sense tells me that boys will be retained in the pack in this order: 1. if the boy has an active parent in the pack, committee or district. 2. if the boy was a scout in the pack last year. 3. if the boy was a scout in a different pack last year, and finally, if the boy is new to scouting and the pack.


    If BSA guidelines or an SOP exists, I'd like to quote them when our action begins. It's a shame that we have to turn boys away due to a lack of den leadership in our small American community here in Seoul.


    Advice anyone? Where can I turn for guidelines?


    Ken Ferris, Cubmaster, Pack 89, Yongsan Army Garrison, Seoul, Korea


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