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Conservation Project Ideas

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Anecdote time -- years ago, when my sons were both Cubs, we volunteered for a "town-wide cleanup day" that was held on Earth Day, which was on a Saturday that year. We basically picked up trash on town roads and properties. The woman who organized the day was very nice -- most people didn't have a place already picked out, and she would say "I would choose something close to home, something that you see every day -- then you'll appreciate the results". My wife, kids and I had an interesting time doing it, even though you can't expect much out of a 7 year old and a 9 year old.


All the while, I was thinking "next year, I'll get the pack involved...and if I talk to every Scout unit in town, I can probably get at least a hundred extra people out." BSA alone, that was at least 3 packs and 4 troops, the ones I knew about. I wasn't sure how many Girl Scout groups were out.


So the next year, I started "recruiting" a couple of months in advance. First roadblock was talking to the local DE, the first time I'd talked to him. It was simple, I wanted to talk to a unit commissioner for our town, who then might be able to contact every unit with the project idea. No deal -- our town didn't have a unit commissioner. I got names for every unit leader, though.


Girl Scouts were tough. I saw on the council website that they had service project ideas listed for Earth Day, the most challenging of which was to plant flowers outside the council office building. When I tried contacting someone there, they flat out refused to give me any contact names, telling me it was a privacy issue. They said they would tell units about the Earth Day service project, but nobody ever showed up on the work day.


It was just as bad in my own unit. A grand total of two other families besides me and one of my other sons (out of about 40 families in the pack). That's when I realized that most families in the pack were after the trinkets and not really interested in anything that didn't relate to a trinket. No pack outings, no day camp, no service projects, or parades. Nothing.

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Will you be attending the Council facility in a camping format (Resident Camp, Day Camp, etc)?

If you are, you might talk to the Camp ranger or Camp director to see what kind of projects they have available for the Cubs.

When our Webelos attend resident camp, there is usually a camp award for a conservation project done during camp week. All we had to do was go ask, and we were put to work. One year, our project was to clean up all the dead branches that had fallen around the camp site. Spent about an hour during one of our free time sessions taking care of it. We ended up being the only pack to take the ranger up on his offer. Everybody else thought it would be too hard to do. You don't know until you ask.

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