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Schmoozin' with the Pro's

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What makes a great district or council?


Might be better for a new thread, but I would love to know what everyones thoughts would be on this.


If we could make it great, what would it look like? What would be the first step to make something great? What can we do to make it so more volunteers wanted to be known as district and council Scouters?


I am teaching a class in the subject of expanding district volunteerism at a district committee meeting in April. Would love this groups thoughts on the subject.



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If you're interested enough to read this far, you might be a candidate for the "Title Challenge."


Here is a list of abbreviations for local council professional positions. In a later reply, I'll list the answers

































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Here are the answers to the "Title Challenge."


AD Activities Director

ADFS Assistant Director of Field Service

ASE Assistant Scout Executive

BSA Borough Scout Executive

BM Business Manager

CD Camping Director

DCS Director of Camping Service

DE District Executive

DFiS Director of Finance Services

DFS Director of Field Service

DiD District Director

DLFL Director of Learning for Life

DSS Director of Support Services

ED Exploring Director

EE Exploring Executive

EnD Endowment Director

ExFD Exploring Field Director

FiD Finance Director

LFLD Learning for Life Director

LFLE Learning for Life Executive

PD Program Director

PRD Public Relations Director

SDE Senior District Executive

SEE Senior Exploring Executive

SLFLE Senior Learning for Life Executive

SPP Special Position Professional

TD Training Director



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Have you seen the video from the February 5th videoconference ?

We held an Impact meeting last week, and I seen it for the first time.

While I think it is very good and will act as a good tool to "Sell" the program. I do have to admit to being a little surprised, that while it does such a good job of showing how diverse we are, it left one very important section of the population out.

There was not a woman in sight.

We do have females who are the contact person for many of our chartered organizations.

Seems a shame to leave them out.

What are your thoughts ?

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I didn't see the video's during the teleconference, too busy schmoozin with the prospects I guess. Heard that it was pretty good. I would bet that the lack of female representation was not intentional.


We had more than organizations at our location, one of two for the council. More than turned in commitments. Kind of scary that we might actually have that many new units soon. Have to get the district structures ready to make sure that they stay healthy.



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ED Exploring Director

EE Exploring Executive

ExFD Exploring Field Director

SEE Senior Exploring Executive

Let me guess something to do with venturing?

When did Explorers disapper?

and why? Did Ventures replace Explorers? Seems I remember Ventures and Explorers running at the same time.

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Exploring is career centered division of Learning for Life and is no longer a part of "traditional" scouting which includes Cub Scouts, Boy Scouts, Varsity and Venturing. This change was made 2 years ago or so.


Bob White

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The teleconference broadcast was a good broadcast. Each council got a copy of the tape for backup reasons -- in case the telecast was interrupted.


Most of those giving Scouting testimonials were the heads of organizations that are our largest charter partners -- and few of those "Institutional Heads" are female.


I really don't want to open a can of worms on females in the Boy Scouts of America (having said that, I'm sure I will,) but I'm all for it!


I worked with several District Chairmen (that's still the official term) and the very best was a female. She really got the job done and was a pleasure to work with. I've also had the honor of working with a female OA Lodge Advisor, membership chairman, numerous Cubmasters and so forth.


I'm confident that women weren't part of the teleconference simply because the heads of the Lions, Moose, Salvation Army, Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, etc. are still male. No slight intended; just worked out that way.


The teleconference resulted in over 2,500 commitments for new units. I doubt that many will come through, but I applaud the effort. If we gain even 900 units across the country with an average membership of 19 per troop, 25 per pack and 8 per crew, we'll have done something great for those kids.


I agree with Bob White's intimation -- we have a responsibility to those new units. New Units are not easy. Unless everything goes right from the offset, they're in trouble.


Jesus Christ had a parable ... I don't have a Bible in front of me, but the parable talks about some seeds fall on fallow ground, some on fertile ground. We (professionals and volunteers) need to be the fertile ground. Find out who the people are in those new units. Offer to help plan, train, show them how to succeed.


From what I've seen of the Scouters involved in these forums, I have absolute faith that you will do whatever you can to help new units succed in bringing the Scouting programs to the youth of our country.


Thanks for your support of Scouting programs.



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Let's talk about Exploring (response to previou reply by Dan.)


In 1998 the Exploring Program, which until then had been a traditional program of the BSA, moved to the Learning for Life subsidiary corporation.


In the past (I want to say late 50's, early 60's, but Dan can probably correct me) Venturing and Exploring were two seperate programs. The Ranger Award is not new, just re-vamped.


In 1969, Exploring went co-ed. The focus shifted from senior Boy Scouts (which was a program) to a more career-oriented focus.


By 1998, most Explorer Posts had a career interest affiliation, no uniform, no advancement, and no real resemblence to Cub Scouting or Boy Scouting. Law suits against municipal agencies (namely under the auspices of police and fire departments) were being sued for sponsoring organizations that had standards of membership regarding religion and sexual preference.


I'm not in a position to speculate on the reasoning of national committees (volunteers with professional advisors,) but I will say that my logic is that by 1998 these Explorer Posts were very different than the traditional Cub Scout Pack or Boy Scout Troop. They deserved to have their own program and, being career centered and not values centered, should have their own standards of membership.


In August of 1998, Exploring moved to the Learning for Life subsidiary. If you want to find them on the internet, look for Learning for Life. You'll find links. Still a great program.


Now, the above leads to the question of what to do about High Adventure Exploring Posts, church-based Exploring Programs, hobby-type posts, etc.


The Venturing program, not coincidentally, was launched in August of 1998. This program has its own oath, advancement program and membership standards as the Boy Scouts of America. Take a look at the advancement requirements -- it's cool stuff! Other than not having a set uniform, Venturing fits in very well with the traditional programs of the BSA.


However, the BSA (meaning guys and gals like you and me) aren't very quick to change. We need to work together to learn as much about Venturing and get excited about it if we can. It's demographically the largest market the BSA is just beginning to tap and an area that all of us don't know much about. I'm just saying that it's still (for a 90+ year old organization) a new program. Let's embrace it and grow it.


Have a nice evening.



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What's it take from the volunteer side to make Venturing kick in? Other than the more obvious things...

I'll move this topic to the Venturing section but would appreciate any professional input that you'd care to offer. Thanks in advance

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I find myself on vacation this week and using a borrowed computer that is very slow. Will respond some more when I get home, but thought I would say something about venturing.


Perhaps the greatest thing someone can do to get venturing rolling is treating it in the same manner that we treat Cub and Boy Scouts. Do we have outdoor programs, training, activities on the schedule for these groups? Then we need to get some things on the schedule for venture crews. We then can't give up when the first camp fails.


I work with about 25 church youth groups that are using venturing in a very positive manner. We are experts in outdoor program,safety, leadership training and youth protection. When we realize the the chartering organization concept is one that partners us with organizations that need our help, we can start to help them become better. Think like a youth pastor. The average tenure is going to be just over a year for a youth pastor. They burn out, don't get the job done, don't get paid well, or something causes them to quit. Our program can help them create a high school youth program that works.



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