Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
moosetracker

Nervous Breakdown - any Advice?

Recommended Posts

As stated in previous posts, I am a new District Training Chair. My first Training date is Oct 1st - 2nd - 3rd. A Intro to Outdoors. I should have had my trainers organized months ago, but I feel like I am trying to hang onto grains of shifting sand.

 

I have never gotten anyone to step up for Plant & Animal Identification.

I couldn't find anyone for Interfaith worship or backpacking for a long time. But about 12 days ago I found my person for backpacking, (it is just, I have emailed him since, with no response so he is making me nervous).

Two days ago I found someone willing to do Interfaith worship, while calling them to see if they may know of someone in the area to do the Plant & animal ID (her son is going to college for a similar subject, he is too far away, but though he may be hanging out with people in the field).

 

Monday (where I asked those there about the the Plant/animal & interfaith) one of my trainers waited until round table ended to tell me she could do the First aide part.. (someone else pulled out of the Flag ceremoney piece, but I found someone for that quickly), First aide wasn't too bad to replace either..

 

Then last night I get an email from the trainer who was doing the cooking part. (He had also done the Plant / Animal part in the past).. I had been emailing him and calling him to see if he would do the P & A and what he wanted me to purchase for the cooking demo.. He finally wrote back with a very curt message.

 

"It is my understanding that this IOLS training is being held during the camporee. I refuse to train people who should be at the camporee".

 

So I just lost the cooking demo guy, and I guess no help from him on the A & P part.

 

My friend who will do the Inter faith knew one person to ask from the Audobon, they knew someone and were going to ask them. someone at roundtable new someone in Fish & game they were going to ask. I had 4 trainers who normally do this, One is busy that weekend, two just never called back, and then the guy who responded last night.

 

I am looking at getting some sort of kits from Fish & Game, I was thinking of doing this piece, but my son (who is young, but an Eagle scout) said he would do it for me. I don't think he is any better then me in knowledge, but unless someone from my team steps up for the cooking demo, that may be mine also. I feel confident I will do a good job with cooking. It is just that I am NOT suppose to be a trainer.

 

Running it at the camporee was the way my predessor did things, I was not part of the yearly calendar setup, I am just fullfilling what was set up. But it will not be during the camporee again. The Adult leaders love it as they are close to their units and can spend some time with them, and they are not taking two weekends away from their family 1 for training and one for the troop event. Others take our spring one that is not during the camporee because their units don't have enought adult coverage.

 

Not only are my trainers hard to organize because they have commitements with working the camporee.. But this is also a woodbadge weekend and some of my trainers are there..

 

Any suggestions on interesting tidbits to add to Plants & animals, so we are not just looking at a book and reading the labels under the sample of tree bark, leaves, or animal footprints or whatever..

 

any advice on what i should remember to cover with the cooking demo..

 

Can anyone tell me this is just my initiation Training, and all my other trainings will go better. Even if you have to lie, it will make me feel better.

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Call your local council camp director and explain that you're looking for local nature experts. Ask if he/she knows of any youth summer camp staffers still in the area who might be interested in helping out.

 

Ask your camp director for copies of his nature/ecology staff's MB lesson plans from the summer. They should have plenty of activities listed that you can adapt.

 

Contact your local nature society and ask for a guest presenter.

 

Then explain to the recalcitrant cooking fellow that you have a group of X Scouters who have signed up for IOLS training and are expecting a good quality program. They are in need of his expertise, and this is the only time they could do it. Explain to him that their units will not suffer from their absences. Try to play to his vanity and get him back on board.

 

Then if he's still being a jerk, inform him that his services are no longer needed as a trainer. He's just let down a group of people *who are seeking training* for an incredibly petty reason. That's his job, as a trainer - to train people!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I am the chair for Outdoor Webelos Leader training coming the 1st weekend in October for the council I serve.

 

I am not new to the organizing training/Merit Badge Councilors game either. I had ran BALOO and a Merit Badge Trail Drive for the past 5 years. What you are describing is nothing new. RELAX.

 

What I have done the last 2 years is try to step away from the cadre of "old guard" that usually "volunteers". I had found they won't commit till last minute, but don't seem to be worried about dropping out last minute.

 

Look to local churches for the interfaith portion. They don't have to be a Scouter. There's probably several units sponsored by churches, but you will probably have to go in person to ask.

 

For the others, I dug thru my contact lists via camp staff, Venture Crew, Boy Scout, Cub Scout, Woodbadge, Round Table and such for NEW people. I know you said there is a Woodbadge weekend/Camporee so that's probably not an ideal pool.

 

Best advice, personally ask for trainers. It's too easy to blow off an email.

 

When you do have the training, make sure you ask at the end if anyone would be interested in volunteering for the next course (pass out sign up sheet). Give them an opportunity to make it better.(This message has been edited by dg98adams)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Thanks, I know the camp director for the boy scout camp, just didn't think of him as a resource, but it is a good idea. Audubon is our local nature society, and I do have a call in to them, by having a friend of theirs call, so it isn't "me" a stranger asking for help.

 

Yeah, I plan to visit units after I get done my two October trainings, one on the things on the list was to look for people in each unit with the knowledge & training to be on the training staff.

 

I did dash him off a letter, that was (what I thought) very nice.. Explaining that I am currently just following the schedule left by my predessor, and that it has already been discussed to take it off the camporee. I also explained that many of the trainees are first year webelos whose dens are not attending the camporee, and that we have alot of people from out of district because we seem to be the only district in our council doing a Fall IOLS training this year.

 

Don't know if it will get him over his pride to walk back in after the grand exit he made (which was not just emailed to me, but the whole training staff.).. At least he did finally reply, his lack of responding to my email and phone calls left me wondering if he was going to do the training. I now have my answer, and can plan around it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Ok Eagle92, you made me feel better, because there is someone worse off then me..

 

What happen to your (or whoever is the District Training chair) staff?

 

I am a little worried over a one day Venturing Specific training with one person. I think I found trainer #2.. (But, we have no one signed up for it, so the whole thing may be a wash anyway.)

 

1) Participants need the variety of speakers and ideas to keep their intrest up. One person talking all day long will put you to sleep no matter how good.

2) Too much pressure on the one Trainer..

 

 

I could not see asking someone to do a 2 to 3 day course all by their lonesome.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

for plants & animals contact county forester, state dept of conservation, various state parks field biologists, nearby nature centers. You may find someone willing to come out for half a day.

There may also be local chapters of non-profits such as National Wildlife, Isaac Walton, Sierra Club. etc that may be willing to come out for a half day

For the cooking -- maybe someone who does cooking training for the Girl Scouts?

The first year is always the hardest. Can you contact Training chairs from other districts and neighboring councils?

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I've been talking to the Council Training Chair, but she has been at it a long time, and is burnt out. She wanted out last year, and was talked into staying one more year. But, you can tell her heart isn't in it. Rarely does she answer me, and when she does it is simply to say she is busy prepping for woodbadge, and it will need to wait until after that. Or we will discuss it at the Council planning meeting.

 

My course is on the last weekend of woodbadge, after that is too late. the Planning meeting is 2 days before my course runs.. A little too late also.

 

I only went to two planning meetings since in the job. The one that had everyone in an auditorium to see the pep talk on the new cub scout program, there was not small group to sit and meet everyone and the last one before summer break (which was practically deserted). I know there should be more as they talked about who was missing. Those there will be in the woodbadge course, and I don't really know them.

 

I think I am the only district with training info (that is current at least).. And the only district with contact info to me and my cub scout chair (haven't found my Boy Scout chair.) So contact for them is nil without a Council planning meeting or the Council Chair hooking me up.

 

I will take a look around at some of the names you listed, but I also put in a call to our camp director.. Luckily we are holding the event close to the camp, so if he knows any locals, we wont be asking them to travel far..

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Call the council and ask for the District Merit badge counselor list.

 

Many merit badges lend them selves to training modules (first aid, nature, pioneering, cooking, etc...). The list will give you names/phone numbers to call.

 

Now if you see a name repeated for lots of Merit Badges, it's usually a Scout Master or a seasoned Scouter who was a Scout Master. Try some of the new names.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I was working with district training for many years. I got tired of not having enough help, or no trainees showing up. Bottom line now is the council is handling the training events. I quit 2 other district position and just work with my home troop. No more nervous breakdowns. Always as yourself why am I doing this and am I missing family things to do it. Scouting will always be there but you only have one chance with your family.

 

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

×