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chrisg478 last won the day on July 19 2015

chrisg478 had the most liked content!

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About chrisg478

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    Junior Member
  • Birthday 04/26/1966

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    Office clerk
  • Biography
    Wife, mother of 3, grandmother of 2. Involved in Scouting for 17+ years. Proud member of the Bobwhite Patrol NEIV190 and 3 time staff member (NEVI69, N6-81-11, N6-18-13). Semi-retired from Scouting with only 1 official hat - Campmaster!
  1. I love working with the kids, especially the Cubs. They get so excited about things that adults take for granted and they always want to learn more. Most of my run-ins with parents come when I try to enforce the rules or even just common courtesy. Like - Kicking a kid off the archery range because he would not listen to directions (he had shot archery before so he knew it all) and he pointed a bow, arrow nocked, string drawn, at another child (his sister). According to his mother he was just fooling around and would never have actually shot his sister. My response was accidents happen, we don't "fool around" on the archery range, and it's MY RANGE. I am the range master, I make the rules, I get to decide who is allowed on the range, I am responsible for the safety of everyone on the range and your son must leave the range. She reported me to the camp director who informed her that it was MY RANGE, I make the rules, I get to decide who is allowed on the range, I am responsible for the safety of everyone on the range, and if I felt her son should leave the range then that's what should happen. She wasn't very happy with me or the camp director that day. Same day - I am in the latrine (one hole) and a man walks in with his 2 kids (boy & girl). I said excuse me, could you all please wait outside? When I was finished and went out the man proceeded to yell at me because his son got a glimpse of my rear end sitting on the toilet. I replied that he should not have removed the "occupied" sign from the doorway (attached to a chain drawn across the doorway) and just barged in on me with his kids. His reply - "How was I supposed to know that's what that sign meant". I just walked away, shaking my head.
  2. I have heard, and over the years I have found, that the best volunteers & leaders are the busiest people. We all work for a living. We all have family members to care for, homes to maintain and tons of other responsibilities. The difference between good Scout Leaders and the "I don't have time" crowd is that good Scout Leaders MAKE THE TIME. The "I don't have time crowd" will never know the great things they are missing. .
  3. Received the Silver Beaver Award at our Council Awards Reception the other night. The ceremony was ok but I really wish Council would have just mailed the thing to me. The thing that made the evening worthwhile was getting to spend time with some really great friends and my wonderful family. And I guess this is a good end to my scouting career.

    1. packsaddle


      Congratulations! Enjoy the good feeling.

    2. qwazse


      Congratulations ... and don't stop scouting. Just scout differently!

    3. chrisg478


      Qwazse - I am not leaving scouting entirely. Scouting differently sounds really great. I just need some time to figure out what that means for me.

      I have served at the Unit, District and Council levels and I really have no desire to repeat or go back to any of those jobs. I've had to slam those doors shut and lock them to keep from getting sucked back in.

      I think for now I will continue volunteering at our local camp (my home away from home) and see what doors open up there.

  4. My pack and troop are lucky enough to have their own "scout house" behind the CO's building (local Moose Lodge) but we are one of the few in our area that have our own space. There are pro's and con's to having your own space - Pro - you can have meetings whenever you want Con - you end up having den meetings in a building with no heat in 20 degree weather because you didn't budget for a new furnace this year. Pro - I can store equipment, supplies and materials at the scout house instead of in my house/shed/garage. Con - Other people "borrow" my equipment, supplies and materials and don't take care of them or replace them. Pro - Everybody enjoys using the scout house for all types of activities. Con - Nobody wants to help with general clean up and maintenance like taking out the trash and mowing the grass. We also have the added benefit and problem of 2 separate units sharing the same space. When the troop and pack are both strong with good leaders it works out great. But if one (usually the troop) feels that the other (usually the pack) isn't doing their fair share to help maintain the building or pay the bills it gets really ugly really fast.
  5. So how did you convince your District to do this? On our District Committee - We have a new DE, fresh out of college, this is his first "real" job, and he doesn't know his head from a hole in the ground. We have a new District Chairman who is following the clueless DE because he doesn't know any better. And we have a recycled District Commissioner (2nd time as Dist. Com) who can not wait until her term is up on June 30th so she can get away from the other 2. There are also a bunch of names on a piece of paper that says they are all members at large. In the 8 years I have been on the committee I have never met most of these people. And then there is me on the verge of calling it quits. Any suggestions on where I go from here?
  6. ~~My fear is that another awesome professional scouter and friend will loose his job because of the unrealistic expectations of our council leadership.- - - I hate it when I am right. The only part I was wrong about was my friend quit before they could find a reason to kick him out. At least he got to leave more or less on his terms. ~~My dream is that our local council leadership will remember that this a volunteer run organization and the professional scouters job is to support the volunteers. - - - If the first 2 months of the year are any indication, council will never get it right. Less support for volunteers and events run by "professional" scouters that only care about the numbers (dollars, people, etc.) seems to be the wave of the future around here. ~~I look forward to "cutting back" on Scouting in 2015. - - - The sooner the better, I can't wait for it to be over. I turned my training team over to the new coordinator 4 months early. Only 2 training events left and then I am out of here.
  7. In my area most Chartering Organizations don't know they sponsor 1 or more units and the unit leaders don't know who their Chartering Organization is or who their COR might be. How can we support each other if we don't know who we are and don't speak to each other? A sad example - Last year our DE was having problems getting a units charter processed because he could not find someone to be the COR or IH and sign the paperwork. He said he was going to go park outside the Chartering Organization (a VFW) on Friday night and he would get the first drunk that stumbled out to be the COR and sign the paperwork. Of course he was joking (it's a really bad joke) but it says a lot about the relationships between the units and the Organizations that sponsor them. And I know it sounds obvious that you have to make yourself visible if you don't want to be invisible. But that is what it boils down to. A better story - There is a pack in a small town near where I live. A few years ago (5 or 6) they had about 6 scouts and 2 or 3 leaders that were trying to keep the pack running. They wanted the pack to grow, they wanted to teach their kids to be involved in their community, and they wanted the community to know about their Pack. They started doing service projects for the church they meet at. Things like food drives, clothing drives, raking leaves, etc. They also participated in community events like the Christmas parade, the local spring festival and Veterans Day Events. Most pack events were publicized in some way - local newspaper, facebook, twitter, church bulletins etc. The next year, for the first time in a long time the school let the pack hold a recruiting night at the school and passed out flyers inviting all the boys to attend. The pack grew a little bit. They continued doing service projects and more organizations from their community would contact them and ask for help. They helped the school with the spring carnival. They held a community flag retirement ceremony on Veterans Day. And they continued to publicize as many events as possible. Over the next few years they grew and participated in more service projects and community events. This pack now has roughly 50 kids with enough adults that they have at least 1 den leader for every den, a CM and an assistant, as well as a full committee. This pack does thousands of service hours for all different types of organizations all year around. They have the full support of the local schools and many churches in town. Last year the Pack received the Governor's Award for Community Service from their state Governor. This year a local restaurant donated a full pasta meal, with salad and dessert, for over 200 people, to the pack for their Blue and Gold Banquet. As a result of "being seen" the pack is now reaping the benefits of having the support of their local community. It was not easy. I know most of the leaders from this pack and they are very dedicated people. And I personally witnessed how hard they worked to get where they are today. But I am sure they would tell you that it has all been worth it to see the great things that can happen when local communities come together to help and support the people,
  8. Getting back to the original topic, I have some other suggestions on how to promote scouting - 1. Become active partners with your chartered organization. Do service projects for them. Do they have a newsletter, bulletin or other publication you could get an article or picture in. Have the SPL, SM or CM go to an appropriate meeting and give a "state of the Troop or Pack" report once a year. Thank the organizations leaders (pastor, board of directors, etc.) for their support. 2. Get your unit involved in your community. Do service projects (long & short term) for other organizations. Participate in community events. Once people see you doing things they will ask you to do more. 3. If your CO is a church, see if the boys can "serve" as ushers, ministers, cantors or other positions in the church. Is there a children's service or Sunday school program your scouts could help with? A youth group they could partner with. Are there church events where the boys could lend a helping hand? Have them wear their uniform (field or activity) to these events as often as possible. IMHO scouting has become "invisible" because we have let it become that way. We participate in Scouting activities but most of the time those things happen far away from the public eye. If you want to be seen, you have to do things when and where people can see you. You have to make people pay attention to you. And if all people ever hear is the negative things then we only have ourselves to blame for not sharing the good things scouting does. I am not ashamed to be a Scouter and I tell other people about the good side of scouting all the time. Yes the membership issue can be a touchy subject for some people. The couple of times I have been asked about it my response has been that National sets the policy and my opinion doesn't really matter. If they still want my opinion I tell them that there is no place in scouting for any type of sexual behavior, period. I believe it is none of my business if someone is straight or gay or whatever. When I recruit leaders their sexuality has nothing to do with the qualities I am interested in.
  9. When the politics and BS from my District and/or Council outweigh the FUN. Which is happening now. They (council) are firing and/or forcing out all of my friends (volunteers & professionals) as I write this. I can see where this is headed and I am taking the high road out rather than waiting for them to beat me down and drag me through the mud. So much for the Scout Oath and Law. And the funniest part of all is the Council Training Chair just asked me if I was interested in taking over his job in the fall. I guess he missed the memo.
  10. Mark, Since this topic was started several years ago I am sure things have changed including that e-mail address. Rodney Scout Reservation has a facebook page and the e-mail address is rsr@dmvc.org. I am sure if you contact the camp director either by e-mail or facebook he will be able to help you. .
  11. A suggestion - Why don't you show the YPT training video to all the parents before going on your next pack overnighter? Your District Training Chair should be able to help you locate a DVD copy and/or run the training for you. I have several units in my district that do this training with all the parents that are going to summer camp with the pack/troop. They feel it is helpful for all the adults to know the rules ahead of time.
  12. Our local council camps have separate bathrooms/showers for youth males, adult males and females. We also have latrines (no shower) in most of the campsites. Most of our Cub Scout events or summer camps only last 2-3 days so most people don't bother with a shower. And in the summer most of the kids will say they don't need another shower because they had to walk through a shower to get into the pool. We do our best to get people to follow the rules about adults in the adult bathrooms, youth in the youth bathrooms but we are not fanatics about it. All females use the same bathrooms anyway. Younger siblings and a lot of the younger cubs go into the adult restrooms with their parents. I know there are parents that take their kids in the adult showers with them. But that makes it the parents responsibility to watch their kid and keep them safe. If we can keep the adult males out of the youth male bathrooms that is a success. In your case, as long as people are respecting other people's privacy, and parents are being responsible for their own children, I wouldn't get too stressed out about it.
  13. Around here the LDS units are just another unit. They do things thier way but we don't treat them any different. When my son was a Cub Scout he went to Day Camp, District events and Webelos Woods beside kids from the LDS unit. I attended basic Cub Leader training, PowWow and even Wood Badge with the Leaders of the LDS unit. Our District holds roundtable at the LDS church and we also have used it for other events. Our local LDS unit has always been very involved in the OA and their leaders help with training events and activities. The only real differences are they leave camp Saturday night, they don't attend our summer camps, do FOS presentations or sell popcorn. The only thing we discuss changing in regard to LDS units is to offer special IOLS trainings just for LDS members. That usually gets shot down and it is up to each training team how to best accommodate LDS members who say they can't stay overnight on Saturday.
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