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Loy_36

Pack Budget

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I'm the Cubmaster of a new start up pack of only 5 boys and I'm trying desperately to get a budget established and get a quality program going for them. Can anyone give me some ideas on what a normal pack budget would be per boy and any ideas on fundraisers would be greatly appreciated.

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Welcome to the forum. The spectrum is large. Some Packs have well established fundraising programs and can fund lots of activities, others like mine are less fundraising intensive. I am not saying this is the best way to go but our Pack tries to keep registration costs as low as possible ($80) to fund awards, pinewood derby, blue and gold and then make all other activities such as camping, fishing hayrides, den supplies etc. ala carte. Popcorn fundraising has been on a steady decline for us, but a few boys go gangbusters with it. My schedule is September and October is to hectic to get out there much for the door to door thing. If your council has a "camp card" program we had great success in front of Wally World and grocery stores last spring. $5 camp card is an easy sell, $20 popcorn not so much (for my area).

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Thank you! The popcorn hasn't been to bad for us but being kind of a rural community the whole door to door is kind of out of the question for us as well. I'm hoping the Camp Card will really bring in some money. Do you have the boys in your pack pay dues and if so how much?

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No, but I think it is a good idea. On the den level, we have just collected money from the parents for supplies or activities. Just the culture of the Pack why we moved here two years ago. You are in the position to help set the culture,

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We used to charge $40 dues. The dues covered $24 charter renewal, $12 Boys Life subscription, $1 insurance fee to council and $3 for the unit for miscellaneous stuff. Everything else we covered with fundraising (popcorn).

 

The rest of your budget if fully dependent on your program, what "stuff" you want to provide to your scouts, and what you'll expect parents to pay for directly. Our pack always provided the book, necker, slide and all the awards. Depending on your activity level that could chew up $30 - $50/boy/year easily. If you provide PWD cars or bird house kits or anything like that you'll rack up another $10/boy/event or activity. A B&G Banquet could be really expensive or really inexpensive depending on if you cater/rent a room or hold a pot luck.

 

In short, and in my humble opinion, you can't plan a budget until you plan a program. Once you have those things together you can figure out fundraising.

 

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I think it's fair to say that families don't expect to participate in a program like Scouting for free. Given that you're a "start up" you might consider explaining to the other families that you're not sure yet what this will cost in total, and lay out the amounts you know you have to spend for registration, Boys Life, etc, and add $25 or so to get the Pack started with the understanding there might be another "ask" later in the year based on the activities. You might also think about asking for a one-time larger contribution ($100?) for which each Scout and Adult Leader would receive a "Founder" patch they could wear permanently on their uniform. This would give you a solid financial base out of the gate. The feasibility of this, of course, depends on the financial condition of your Pack's families, but you can always take payments of $10 a month if people are struggling.

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Thanks, dcsimmons. Like I said earlier this is a new start up pack and everything is coming at us 100 mph. Trying to get the boys to buy their uniforms, getting them to show up and getting enough volunteers for everything. I know it will all come together in the end but getting a new pack up and running is a lot of work.

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Do what you can and leave the rest for another day. It's really easy to burn out. Look at this starting a new pack idea as a 2-3 year project, not a 6 month project.

 

Stosh

 

I got my boys to summer camp this summer and they attended their first camporee this weekend. I've been working on this troop since summer before last and now have 6 boys.

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scoutegripper, Thanks for the idea of the one-time larger donation for the founders. I was wondering what were the rules for asking for donations outside of the pack? Also, is it possible for the pack to get a 501(3)c non-profit organization status with the IRS so people that donate money could claim it on their taxes?

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jblake47, I was really excited when we had our original 5 sign-up the night we had the start-up. The thing I'm trying to figure out now is how to get these boys advancement in a timely manner. When we started this I got handed the Cubmaster position with one of the other adults being listed as a Den Leader and all the others got signed-up as committee members. We have 2 Tiger Cubs, 1 Wolf Cub & 2 Bear Cubs. Now I'm trying to figure out how am I suppose to hold one weekly meeting centered around these 5 boys and lead them in the right direction for their specific rank. Oh, the joys of a new start-up.

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I was wondering what were the rules for asking for donations outside of the pack? Also' date=' is it possible for the pack to get a 501(3)c non-profit organization status with the IRS so people that donate money could claim it on their taxes? [/quote']

 

So far as I know (and the way I operate) is there are no "rules" about asking for donations to support the Pack in general. I know there's some concern/disagreement about individual Scouts asking for support for their Scouting experience, but that's not what we're talking about. I believe that BSA expects you to "clear" any fundraising efforts through your local Council, but I personally see that as a "request" rather than a "rule" and chart my own course.

 

Normally, Packs and Troops are registered under the tax status of their Chartering Organization, and I think it's normal to use their EIN or TIN. If your Chartering Organization is 501©(3), you're in clover. If not, you could always form a Pack XXX Foundation and apply for tax exempt status BUT as Stosh notes above that may be more than you want to bite off right now. In any case, I ask for and my Troop receives monetary and non-monetary contributions, and my thank you letters always say, "Your contribution may be tax deductible as the law allows. Consult your tax advisor."

 

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Your Pack doesn't really exist in legal sense, you are part of your Chartered Organization. You need to check with your local council about how to handle the tax ID number and so forth, different rules for different states and councils. BSA rules prohibit soliciting donations at the unit level. There is a lot to learn here. Hopefully you have a good District Executive and he can get you a Unit Commishoner. If you have District Roundtables go to them and network. Ask lots of questions here, just realize we are not always right. :)

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jblake47' date=' I was really excited when we had our original 5 sign-up the night we had the start-up. The thing I'm trying to figure out now is how to get these boys advancement in a timely manner. When we started this I got handed the Cubmaster position with one of the other adults being listed as a Den Leader and all the others got signed-up as committee members. We have 2 Tiger Cubs, 1 Wolf Cub & 2 Bear Cubs. Now I'm trying to figure out how am I suppose to hold one weekly meeting centered around these 5 boys and lead them in the right direction for their specific rank. Oh, the joys of a new start-up.[/quote']

 

Hmmm,... that's a good one. You need 3 people (you can be one of them). Register them any way you want, but they are going to function as one "den"/pack. They all meet at the top of the hour. 5 minutes for flags, 20-25 minutes they break apart into rank advancement work (one adult for each rank). Then they all come back together for fun and games for 20 minutes, treats for 10, closing flags and out the door. Maybe a 4th person reviews and makes sure that during the month each of the three groups gets some kind of outside the meeting activity/adventure specific to their age.

 

You will kill two birds with one stone. The pack will create an overall identity and the different boys will have an opportunity to get to know the others AND you will still have time set aside for a rank level focus on advancement.

 

IF and it's a big IF....! If you have a Boy Scout troop nearby that doesn't meet on the night you have selected, get a mature scout as a Den Chief. In the years to come, those DC's will make a big difference at the Webelos/AOL level. If you are lucky enough to get a mature Life or Eagle, they may be able to function as the 3rd person alone. I'm thinking there just might be an older scout interested in working with a brand new pack.

 

Stosh

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My district does have Roundtable Meetings so I'm certainly going to the next one. So the group that chartered us is 501©(3) so if someone wanted to donate money or anything else for that matter to the unit who would it have to go through? The chartered organization or the Pack? Also, how would you go about setting up an account at a local bank for the Pack since it shouldn't be in any one persons name?

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Stosh, Thanks for all that input. Sounds like you've been doing this for awhile. There is a Boy Scout Troop about 20 minutes away in another town so I'll check with them. Thanks a lot everyone for all this great advice. I will definitely be on here a lot.

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