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About Onslow

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    Junior Member

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    New residential contruction
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    Gardening, beekeeping, fly fishing,

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  1. Why the OA matters to my son: 1. As a scouts ages, they relate less and less to the scouts in the unit. OA lodge gatherings bring youth in similar phases of life to together. Arrowmen talk about college, and other aspirations. It is not uncommon for the entire chapter to pile in one adirondack while at a lodge event, and talk until 3 AM. See #2 2. Brotherhood...not the recognition. 3. OA High Adventure programs. These programs are more affordable and much more accessible to middle class folk then the generic scout HA programs, and do not require adult (parental) involvement. The local chapter has meetings once a month, but they are a snore. Most of the active arrowmen are reliable participants at lodge and section events. Yes, there are many kids who go through ordeal, and they are done, but they are faceless unknowns that have marginalized themselves, and are not legit. They may be statistic on a computer spreadsheet, but if they are not attending chapter meetings, lodge activities, NOAC, and HA, then they are not really arrowmen. My boy is planning on going on a OA HA every year until he ages out.
  2. Onslow

    Compare Scouting vs Sports ?

    I'm a believer of sorts in the scouting program. The most direct answer to your question is just follow the instructions in the Troop Leader Guidebook particularly in the areas of youth leadership. Scheduling, and executing annual planning conferences, PLCs, ILST ensure a degree of youth ownership. That being said, it is challenging to engage youth that do not possess any depth of foundational knowledge, and are apathetic and lazy. Regarding getting newly bridged scouts excited, 10-11 year old youth will want to hang with the big boys. Back when there were age restrictions on outpost camping and backpacking, I would tell the 11 year olds "I'm not supposed to let you come on this trip, but since you've demonstrated sufficient fitness and maturity, I'll let you participate in the upcoming outpost camping trip". This type conversation was worth more to the kids than giving them a Ben Franklin, and would elevate zeal and excitement for both general scouting, and the opportunity to spend time in the outdoors. The second level of baiting can take place as a youth nears OA eligibility. My son recently participated in the OA Northern Tier Adventure at Ely MN. It was a very tough slog for the lad, but he came back feeling more adult-like and just super excited about the national high adventure programs. He endured things never thought possible, and is now a walking advertisement for scouting. NT belts, belt buckles, shirts, water bottles, Summer Camp shirts, OA chapter shirts, OA lodge front plates are all on display at school. These examples aside, become acquainted with the all the High Adventure programs available at your council's summer camp, and national high adventure bases. Explain to the youth about the different paths that can be taken in the OA. In the OA, one can become involved in Indian affairs, pursue admin positions, be a consumer of high adventure, or be a camp staffer on the council level, or a national high adventure base. Always make youth aware of opportunities that are two steps ahead of their skill sets. Deep down in every person's soul is vanity and ego. Find it in your youth, and use for something positive. Droning on about advancement and badges gets stale quickly, but be warned, box checkers who want the Eagle rank, but are reluctant to give back to the community will not respond well to what I've suggested.
  3. Onslow

    Compare Scouting vs Sports ?

    I've never met an adult or youth who've complained about physical injuries haunting them later in life resulting from scouting activities. I have met a multitude of people facing knee and shoulder injuries due to baseball and football. There is a relationship between sports injuries and prescription drug addictions. In many locales, there is a toxic drug culture to be found in HS football culture.
  4. The underlying issue here is just lack of knowledge, and poor judgment. Any trip that takes place on a river with shoals, rapids, strong eddy lines should be planned carefully. A maximum flow benchmark should be established well ahead of the trip by someone who has a has many river miles under their belt, and is flow literate. The flow was 11,000 cfs. A reasonable moderate flow for a river this size is 2000 cfs. If one has no clue what a USGS gage is, and the relevance of flow rates, aforementioned person has no business planning a trip on such a river. Looking at the sat. imagery, I would have suggested a 3000 cfs max for the float. Sidenote: A river that is as narrow as 150-200' wide flowing at 11k will probably have water velocities of 6' per second. One can only imagine an unwary paddler unwittingly crossing an eddy line.....
  5. Onslow

    OA election nights

    The larger focus should be this; Being tapped for the OA is not a recognition award, but rather a call to service. I having a hard time believing someone who marginally qualifies to be to participate in an election would be contribute in any meaningful manner to the local chapter, lodge, council, or national, unless the youth scouter has entered scouting very late, and plans to serve with much energy and exuberance.
  6. Onslow

    Activity Differentiation

    I'm going with the gold doc. This is clearly a change from 2017. I suppose the GSS will catch up soon.
  7. Onslow

    My Way Or The Highway

    Based on what your saying, this guy is not conforming to the program leadership protocols. People who try to create their own program in lieu of what the BSA mandates should be not wearing the uniform. I would call your district scout exec and district commissioner about the whole key 3 issue. The SE should have the courage to have a conversation with both the CO and SM.
  8. Onslow

    Activity Differentiation

    Unsupported as in camping in spots where during the course of a float trip wherein external support is not feasible, or purposefully avoided.
  9. I've seen my fair share of shenanigans. My own son was awarded a 50 miler award when he only completed 1 hour of service work instead of 10. I've been pressured to sign off on on awards and have refused. I witnessed an adult leader be awarded a 5 year veteran award who had only been a leader for 38 months at the last district banquet. This stuff unfortunately happens all the time. Good ole boy nepotism ...... There was also a point in time in my early scouting career I did not have a complete handle on all the processes, such as differentiating in any meaningful the difference between discuss and demonstrate. I later learned the my errors and made necessary corrections. Some "shenanigans" are mistakes due to inexperience , and some are boorish purposeful fudging, while other incidents may be just plain laziness.
  10. Advancement is only one of eight methods of scouting. Personal growth is also a method, and I think most would agree it is much more meaningful. About 30 percent of our Troop is either ADHD, OCD, or ASD. It has always been this way, and it takes a caring, consideration, and time, to move a Troop forward in this situation, and still have the unit program to be youth led.
  11. I smell a little fudge.
  12. Onslow

    The liability of being a Boy Scout Leader

    These should be areas of focus for relatively new leaders (3 years or less experience): 1. Understand the BSA parameters. Constantly study the Guide to Safe Scouting, acquaint one's self with the Troop Leader Guidebook. Understanding what the is permissible or not is key. There is no help for an adult leader that haplessly blunders into forbidden territory. 2. Learn to use resources that measure conditions. For example, many flat foots head out Grayson Highlands & Mt. Rogers VA in the Spring for backpacking not understanding the relationship between altitude (4500-5500') and weather vs 400'. Many find themselves nearly freezing to death. There are resources that can help figure things out, such as Wunderground which used to have historic data on private weather stations in some places that are relevant to hikers. This may not be the case anymore, but the point being, be diligent. Comprehending river flow data is another skill. Use resources such as this https://waterdata.usgs.gov/mo/nwis/rt to stay on top of conditions leading up to a trip. Have parameters (max safe flows for any given outing) in cfs flow established well ahead of the trip. 3. Take the time to enroll in First Aid, and more importantly Wilderness First Aid. Make sure the WFA class is legit. Our local council just had a fella offer an 8 hour WFA. Those who are in the know understand this is not legit. WFA can/should inform folks how to run a tight ship, such as release form/health form management. Yes, I carry 4 pounds of health forms when backpacking. There are a multitude of other online classes that are helpful provided BSA. If your unit love rivers, take some ACA classes. An umbrella insurance policy won't bring someone back from the dead, or out of a wheelchair due to spinal injury. It is all about discipline, discipline, and discipline. Thus far in 6 years, our Troop has had more issues with adult crisis than issues with the youth. Heart attacks, and diabetes related issues loom large on the adult side. On the youth side, a youth experienced moderate secondary complications stemming from a tick bit, and one incident due to not using water purification equipment properly....GI issues. My biggest fear is an adult leader dying of cardiac arrest in the woods.
  13. Onslow

    Uniform Inspections

    My Troop occasionally perform uniform inspections for an arbitrary period, and recognizes the scout who best meets all the criterias. This exercise has improved the appearance of the scouts well past the exercise. I suggest doing this type of exercise in the Winter for 8 weeks. There isn't much going on outdoors this time of year.
  14. So older scouts want to get their game on with backpacking and unsupported overnight floats, but there is a strong presence of 10-12 year old scouts. There is never enough time, or committed adults to enable a satisfactory situation for all. No backpack trip in two years...Let's have a discussion about Outdoor Program management and fairness. I seeking examples of good activity management and Outdoor Program management. Also do you adhere to the age recommendations for backpacking...13 and up?
  15. Onslow

    Can a CO profit off a unit?

    I feel you're completely missing the point. Sectarian preaching is wholly inappropriate in the world of scouting imo. Whatever happened to "A Scout is Kind"? I once witnessed a hell fire sermon being preached at a camporee. I'm a Baptist, and I regret not reporting this to the council as an inappropriate incident.