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Forming a Pack Committee?

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First off LOVE these forums. I'm learning soo much. Our pack is only a year old and we do not have a pack committee. When a decision needs to be made we discuss it at parent meeting or by email and then everyone votes on it. It's worked okay so far, but sometimes we spend too much time discussing little things. EVERYONE has a different opinion and our meetings can last almost 3 hours. We have 4 parent meetings a year. In reality though, most parents don't really care and the few that do make most of the decisions. SO I'm looking for a better way to run our pack. No one parent has volunteered to be the CC. On paper our CR is also our CC. She is also the head of our CO. Her son moved on to Boy Scouts along time ago and the original cub pack stopped being active. Last year we had enough boys to start it up again. She wants to take a back seat since she no longer has a son in our pack and just be our CR and head of our CO. She also has health issues. I've been doing most of her job for her to help her out. I also do just about everything else committee wise, treasures, registration, advancements, secretary, etc... Im basically a pack committee of 1. Without the official titles or veto power its getting difficult. I get emails and phone calls a couple times a week filled with Cub Scout drama and everyone is starting to expect me to do everything. I want to nip this in the bud before I burn out. I wouldnt mind being the CC but my husband is the CM and loves it. Im strongly against H/W being CC and CM. I think its time to form a committee of 3-5 parents to make our decisions and meet monthly. Most of our active parents are DLs or ADLs. So who should I recruit to be on the committee? Would you recommend DLs and ADLs also serving actively on the Committee, especially as a CC? I think they should spend their time focusing on the boys and leave the business to some one else. Is anybody out there doing both? Since no one person wants to be the CC has any pack ever split ALL the pack committee jobs including CC into 3-5 hybrid committee positions? I know we'd still need a CC on paper, but is it possible to split up the tasks. We are a small pack and could never fill all the recommended committee and pack positions. It looks to me like some were just created so an interested volunteer would have an official title. Im seeing a lot of overlap. Which ones do we need and what part of that position? Which ones can we cut? We have just over 15 families total in our pack. So I need a list of aprox. 10-15 jobs including pack (5 DLs, CM) and committee (CC, MCs). Thanks for any advice.

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If you have 3 - 5 willing and active committee members the CC only has two jobs first is to say "alright, lets get started" and the second is to say "Enough already, lets go home".

 

Ok, thats a bit of a simplification but not that much.

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Pack leaders should include -

 

1 COR

1 CC

1 CM

5 DL

1 Treasurer

1 Advancement

 

That's 10 adults. If you add 4 Assistant DL's (every den should have 2 leaders except Tiger. With Adult Partners, and Shared Leadership, they can get away with only 1 DL), you have 14 registered adults.

 

The Treasurer can run all fundraisers, the CC can also do Secretary duties.

 

You should be having a Pack LEADERS meeting once a month. Preferably about 2 weeks before the monthly Pack meeting. The Pack LEADERS meeting should be all registered Pack adults. If both leaders in a den can't make it that is fine, but there should be at LEAST one person there from every den. There is no need for formal voting in a Pack Committee/Leaders meeting. A Pack is run on the consensus of it's leaders. You talk, discuss, and come to a mutual agreement on what is best for the BOYS and the Pack.

 

Here is a link to information from the BSA on how to select Cub Leaders -

 

http://www.scouting.org/filestore/pdf/510-500.pdf

 

Here is a link to MyScouting on the BSA National Web site -

 

http://myscouting.scouting.org/

 

You will find BSA's online training there. Check your Council's web site for their training calendar. Make sure EVERY registered adult in your Pack gets FULLY trained for their position.

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Call your Council office and ask for the phone number of your Unit Commissioner. If you don't have one, ask for the District Commissioner or District Executive. Explain the situation and ask them to come to a parents' meeting and help you get organized into a "real" Pack. The model of "Pack committee of one" will not work for very long. And I also agree with the husband/wife CM/CC philosophy...there is conflict of interest there. This sounds like a case of a DE who needed a new unit for his job metrics and just put names in slots without worrying about whether the person really wanted the job. That's a formula for failure.

 

"nip this in the bud before I burn out"...good idea. Good luck.

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I've seen way too many cases of what I call a "one-man show" (or, one-person). That's the combined CM/CC who probably also covers a den as well.

 

The worst case of this, a pack we belonged to up until this last year, was a CM that wasn't putting much into the pack, their spouse who was registered as a CC and WDL; another den leader (my wife, actually) planned, organized and ran pack meetings. Our youngest son, however, was finishing up AoL, so it was known that she was moving on too (I'd already moved up to a troop). The CM finally abdicated, and the pack was a hair away from folding.

 

My recommendation: don't ever rely on one person to be in charge. Concentrate on building a strong committee with shared responsibility. Identify early when parents will be moving on with their sons and plan for the succession. It really doesn't take all that much time to do bare essentials training, using the online training site, so encourage that.

 

The "hair away from folding" part just played out this last week. Nobody in the pack seemed willing to step up and replace the CM/CC. One DL (who was unwilling to step up himself) was pretty much set on moving his entire den to another pack. He placed the fault squarely on "the council" (meaning the D.E. -- I know, I saw the email). He was completely ignoring the fact that several people started well over a year ago at trying to deal with the situation, and nobody from within the pack was willing to step up.

 

This last week, the D.E. found a "recently retired" Cubmaster from another town who was willing to act as an interim CM while everything was pulled back together in this pack. I saw the wrap-up email from that meeting as well -- lots of parents were willing to volunteer for individual tasks, even Den leadership, but there is only one guy who offered to become "CM-in-training", and there were no candidates for CC.

 

By the way -- the CO is a paper entity only, even though the pack has been around a long time. The CO is officially a PTO, and there really isn't a COR other than one mom that acts as a liaison.

 

Build a strong committee -- that's the lesson.

 

Guy

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Ill second what GKlose said. Do whatever you can to build a real pack committee. It will add much stability to your pack and reduce leader burnout.

 

The small pack that I had been involved with hasnt had a functioning pack committee for about 10 years. Back in the old days when it was larger, it usually had a pack committee. In recent years, the Cubmaster has ended up doing the duties of the Committee Chair and the rest of the committee by himself. The paper committee was just names on the recharter; they were either uninvolved, or were serving as den leaders. When the Cubmaster reached burnout, no one was there to back him up, and the pack nearly folded. This happened a couple of times.

 

Some new leaders have stepped up, and are trying to rebuild the pack starting with a new Tiger den. They are a couple and want to serve as Cubmaster, Den Leader and pack committee. They dont want any help from the old timers. Though they have plenty of experience delivering Cub Scout program, I fear that they will be heading down the same path of burnout as their predecessors. As long as they recharter, the District Exec. will be happy.

 

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