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little dove

Recruiting New Boys

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I need ideas on how to recruit boys other than from the local cub pack. In my other posts, you know we started a new troop because of poor leaders. Anyway at crossover time, 8 crossed, 3 of them didn't continue to boy scouts, 1 came to our troop and 4 went to the other troop. We have 6 boys now but would like more, if possible. I have to arrange with the school for a scout night there in Sept. Our council doesn't do it here, but they will give you supplies to do it yourself. Is it okay to contact private schools or church schools ? How far can you go in a district or would that be stepping on toes? I found info on how to have an Open House and a few other ideas. Does anyone have anything that they have had success with?

Thanks,

little dove

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Call your Dist. Exc or your troop Comish. they may be able to help. Go to your local mall bus. office and get permission to set up a scout info (best on weekends) booth. Get posters from your scout shop (videos too) if you have a tv/video player. Be in uniform and pass out troop flyers and have applications ready.

GOOD LUCK.

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I would recommend contacting the private schools. I know of one parent who tried to get our Cubmaster to do that with the school her child attended. She had joined our pack because she hunted down Scouting.

 

Also, talk to local churches.

 

Does your community have a community craft fair or something similiar or school fall festivals? That would be a good time to have your boys set up a display. The boys could show interested boys scout skills, have pictures of things they've done, etc.

 

These are only my ideas, I haven't done any recruiting. I hear also that some troops have "invite a friend night". If the boys are involved in sports or other activities, talk up Scouting at every event with the other parents.

 

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We have found a few strategic joint actitivities with Webelos to be great ways to recruit. If you are trying to reach out to boys who have never been in scouting at any level, that is probably more difficult. Perhaps putting together an outing with parental participation would be effective. While scout outings are generally restricted to registered members, it is legitimate for boys who are considering joining to participate in some outings. As the prior posts suggest, contact your unit commissioner for help and advice.

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As someone who is in a troop that is the only active one in our district. We dont even have a cub pack to draw from. They are all younger cubs and wont be ready to crossover in years whatwe do is...

 

We are very active in the public eye more than normal. If there is a community event we are there helping out and recruiting. We recruit out of all our local schools we even have permission to cross districts to recruit. We even offer to pick up and drop off the boys after the meeting if they need a ride all the time observing YPP. We also have put posters up in the local hangouts and stores. The biggest thing is always be visible and be ready to talk up scouting all the time.

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This is something I love to talk about. For over the last three years Ive had the fastest growth rate in council and have won their Build a Troop award for the last two years. Youll find plenty of help with the scout office, school night etc. but here are some additional ideas:

 

1. I budget yearly dollars for recruiting:

 

a>. Each scout that recruits a boy gets $5.00 in McDonald gift certificates after their recruit joins. Works really well with the 11-12 yr. old scouts as they seem to like McDonalds.

 

b>. Every A they get on their report card they get a $1.00 gift certificate at McDonalds. Kids with no As can get one if they make improvement. Ive had kids go from Cs to As to just get the certificate. Then parents talk to other parents and before you know it youve got momentum and need lots of certificates :-).

 

c>. Do a scout night at the school and advertise it in the paper. I do this with a coupon that if used entitles you to signup for $1.00. Do this in Oct and registration is prorated and its fairly cheap and tie it close to your popcorn sale and take a percentage of sales. We take 5% for the troop, with this approach we succeed by volume.

 

d>. Run a recruiting theme for a month; take every kid that recruits to a Saturday movie after a month.

 

e>. Every youth that got another youth to join got a $50 US savings bond for college. This actually costs you $25.00 but it can be done.

 

f>. Ive also tied time limits to rewards; your friend joins and is active for 6 months you get 45% on popcorn instead of 30%.

 

2. Invite a friend that wants to join scouting on a trip and the friend goes free. If they join you get one free campout.

 

3. Create a cool class-b shirt that rocks. Kids wear ours to school all together on a certain day. I didnt even do this; they did it just because they thought it would be cool.

 

4. Create a cool leather jacket for scouting; I use a WWII bomber jacket. The jacket is only available to 1st class scouts and above (they pay for it too) but they want it and it represents something theyve earned.

 

5. Let them run the program. They run it and stick to it. No matter how goofy they make things, sit back at let them run it. Your kids are your best recruiters.

 

6. Challenge the kids to grow the troop, let them try their ideas.

 

7. Ive got a boat that they love to tube behind (also have other parents with boats too). I hold a special camping trip for only the kids that had new members join. They pay the $15.00 just like any other camping trip, but we water ski, tube, and camp on the beach. The only way they can go is to have recruited someone since the last boat trip.

 

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Thanks everyone. I have been pushing to be in the publics eye. On Memorial Day we hooked up with the local VFW to be in the parade and ceremonies they performed. They were estatic about it. They said they had been trying for years to get Boy Scouts involved. Our two towns have cordinated the ceremonies to have one after the other, our school band plays in both. Our old SM wouldn't allow the troop to be in the second towns(ours)ceremony. Same with the local festivals, only one was allowed. He could have his car in the seconds car show but the troop was not allowed to do anything there. I thought this was rather rude since half the troop at the time was from that town. We will be in our towns festival this year with games for the kids (something they have never had), everyone gets a prize. They were so happy to have a troop they gave us an entire corner and gave us permission to setup camp and the boys could spend the weekend. They will let us even put up some pioneering projects. So on the corner we will have our camp, a get to know us info booth, vegetables from a parents garden to sell, the boys made wood knick knack shelves to sell also, our 3 games, we will get paid to run and the bounce room and paid to empty the garbage cans, they supply gloves and bags. So we will be in the publics eye all weekend and be getting paid to do it. We also will be in the parade. We are also working on having a haunted house for holloween. Have to stop, getting long winded.

little dove

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Little dove,

Wow, that sounds wonderful. Not only will you be in the public's view all weekend, the boys will be busy and sounds like LOTS OF FUN!

 

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The American public overwelmingly supports scouting. It is only the medis thats reports on negative stories. Troops need to have more public (easily seen) service. Set up tables at farmers markets, offer a color guard for local events, plan community service projects where people can see the work; what scouts do will attrack new members

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