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Recruiting New Crew Members

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After four years and little emphasis on recruitment our crew is beginning to thin out as members are going off to college. We've been tapping into the troop that we're attached to and having some success. But we're looking for new outlets.


Has your crew recruited? Where? What recruiting techniques have you found to be successful? What have you found to be unsuccessful?

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Hello Outdoor Thinker


May I suggest an Open House. It has worked many times for my crew. You invite potential candidates to a fun filled night of activities. It is one big show and tell with all your pictures of most exciting events displayed. You could even do a powerpoint presentation or a slide show.


Another one is inviting a guest to an outdoor activity with expenses picked up by the crew or Charter Organization. This is only good for really interested candidates.


We used to do School Night but that has us competing with many school clubs.


If your at a university, you may want to check out the Recreation or Physical ED Majors and see if they will be interested.


Put up Crew Posters or flyers at teen associated businesses and churches.


Just some thoughts,




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  • 2 weeks later...

I was one of the founders of a new Crew and have some experience with recruiting. After the initial boy input from my troop, and the initial girl input from a local Girl Scout unit, there hasn't been much sustaining help from those directions. We found the best recruiting is done by the "young adults" themselves from their school friends. Whether they have previous BSA camping skills doesn't matter that much because the emphasis is on teaching that as needed. If your Crew has reached the stage where there is a year or more gap of recruiting from the kids friends and it just isn't going to happen, then I would not be surprised if the Crew will simply fold as the last ones leave for college. Sad but it happens and you may not be able to prevent it.

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I was not finished with the post when my Windoze froze and apparently submitted the partial entry... to continue: I really did like all the great suggestions M.Warrior had, and with some hard work they might work. But the older kids are not going to be influenced as much by their parents expectations and reasons for joining a crew. They want to join to do fun activities they couldn't otherwise manage (our crew is planning a trip to the Grand Canyon, another crew in our district just came back from Hawaii!) and they want to do them with other kids they already know. So it may seem a cruel reality but a large gap in recruiting by the "young adults" can easily irreversibly damage a crew.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Just getting ready to start a new crew here (high adventure and colonial re enactment)....since we live in a rural county with low numbers of youth available (or even interested in Scouting) the plan is to use the local paper to bang our drum.

One of the areas that I'm exploring is having a face to face with the editor to create a Scouting column which will run with every edition....

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OJ and I have been talking about getting more members in the crew.

At present it is a spin off the troop.

They have managed to recruit a female leader.

We have planned a swim party.

All the crew will invite their friends and there will be apps and stuff for them to take home.

Then they have a bowling night in the works where they are asking the older Scouts from other troops.

They are working on ideas for super activities.

The Newspaper idea is a good one but it didn't work for us. We tried as a district to have a weekly Scouting page. We had a volunteer in charge of marketing on the district committee.

It started with a bang. Then we missed deadlines. Then we found that we just were not getting enough input from the units and at the last minute we were pushed to find newsworthy articles to put in.

In the end it became a pain.

Now we put items in as and when we have them.

OJ and the other crew members placed posters all over the high school. But that didn't work.

While I don't have anything to do with the day to day running of the crew. The Advisor is a friend of mine. He comes from a troop where they have never used the patrol method. Now all of a sudden he expects these guys to be self planning without any training.

They need to work on the meetings that they hold. I have looked in and they are like watching paint dry.


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