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Eamonn

You Are The District.

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SP, I proposed that our Klondike program consist of events each "sponsored" by a troop,  I called a meeting and invited each interested troop to send its SPL and a Scouter.   The units that came with the most complete proposals were our better troops, and we had, and have had since, no problem presenting a day of events that are operated very well.  That process has gone on for twenty-five years. (How time flies !!), complete with an elected event "SPL."

 

Are they clear that you only want them to operate one event?>>

 

 

Sounds like this is an idea that has promise, but that like a lot of things packs or troops are slow to adopt a new program/activity.  Once they do it a couple of times,  it will be an old habit they are used to doing and doing well. 

 

I'm finding it tough to get this started,  though.

 

 

I've started this by asking a couple of packs to help where I've been a volunteer in the past.  Response so far is weak.

 

So--- what about asking troops for this kind of support?  They should be Xperts on putting together fun activities for Cub Scouts,  and it would be an opportunity to show off their troop to future Boy Scouts and future Boy Scout parents!

 

Any suggestions on how to solicit help from packs or troops would be welcome.

 

 

I'm glad to see that no one (so far)  has suggested that it's unreasonable for the district to ask units to help with Day Camp,  a district activity!

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I'm late to this one..... and I must admit to not reading every post thoroughly, as there are some long ones.

but based on the gist I'm getting, I have to say I'm with @ on this one.

 

UC?  what's that

 

DE? except for maybe twice or three times when I was able to hand off or pick-up some paperwork form the DE at a roundtable or such instead of taking it all the way down to council, I've never had much help from our many DE's (and I've only been at this thing for 4 years)

 

I will say that we have some great positive energy form a group of volunteers that work the RT, and most of these same folks are heavily involved in the cub day and twilight camps for the summer.  But sadly I have never been able to have my son attend, so I can't speak to how good they are.....

 

And there are some folks that work hard I'm sure for our Cub-O-Ree, or whatever they're calling it these days, but honestly.... we went once and I would rather go to some similar council events that they put on every year.

 

I do try to attend RT when i can and find it valuable, but honestly say I don't get huge value from it.  For me, it serves mostly as a social networking thing and to motivate me a bit....

 

& I think that in person training would, in theory, be much better if they were offered, but round here its hit and miss, very sketchy..... But I actually think these trainings would be better, or at least more plentiful, if the professionals would head them up using volunteer instructors.  I know, that's the last thing we want is to have pros do the teaching.... but I think if they did the facilitating so that so much doesn't have to be shouldered by volunteers, it would be a better situation.... I mean, pull it together, reserve the space, organize, support.... do all the stuff that a volunteer doesn't have time to do....

Edited by blw2
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UC = Unit Commissioner.

yeah, sorry, I just have added a  ;)   I was being sarcastic since we don't have one..... at least to my knowledge

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At best, you have one chance in three to have a functioning UC.   With two different troops and visits to others to teach, I have seen one at a meeting twice since 1983.

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At best, you have one chance in three to have a functioning UC.   With two different troops and visits to others to teach, I have seen one at a meeting twice since 1983.

 

So what's the point in having them? I wonder how prevalent this pattern is?

 

I recently ran into our former SMs and our current SM for beers. No one can remember a UC visiting us more than 2-3 times during their tenure. The last three SMs (going back 14 years) cannot recall EVER having a UC visit us.

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The pattern in this area for some time is that 1/4 to 1/3 of units are covered by functioning UCs.  Honest councils will not count UCs who do not do the job. 

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Assuming I am approved, I will be my district's chairman next year. This thread has been a good read for me and I hope to take points from it to try to help the district be as useful/helpful/successful as possible. Any advice for me as chair would be appreciated....even if it is "Don't ask us for $$". Honestly, I have done a fair amount of that over the years.

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@@ALongWalk I'd find out what your units need and offer to help, rather tha doing the same old thing or pushing what council wants you to do.

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@@ALongWalk Thanks for your service to our scouters! And good luck!

Our most recent district chair was stellar. (Roger, if you're reading this, love ha man!)

 

Step 1, be friendly ... Even to chaps who may not deserve it.

Step 2, ask what topics folks would like to cover at round tables.

Step 3, ask who can teach in this topics (prefer volunteers to pro's when possible).

Step 4, contain business at round tables so the teaching time does not get shorted.

 

Handy tip: Find the quietest guy/gal in the room. After the meeting, make sure you thank them for coming before transacting any other business.

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1. Try very hard to find a job for everyone who is willing to help.

 

2. Encourage use of the Patrol Method by awarding an annual ribbon to those who do use it. (Requires someone who knows what it is.)  Publish those Troop numbers in your news letter. (Recognition - in almost all endeavors -  works.)

 

3. Try to get back-ups in every key job.  Until you do, you are a clot/transfer/unhappy spouse away from recruiting someone to step in on the fly.

 

4. Public praise (every chance you get to give honest praise)  Private evaluation.

 

5. Constantly ask volunteers if they know anyone who could help.  

 

6. Training is the most important thing that you do, if done correctly by competent, enthusiastic staff.

 

7. Do not believe that the UC's will, in fact, do what they are in theory to do.  They simply are very unlikely to be in place.

 

8. The Key Two is you and your DC.  Paid Scouters come and go and have different objectives than you should have.

 

9. Don't make the DE's job more impossible than it already is.  Keep him informed.  Ask his opinion even though it may be useless.

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Late to the party but,

 

I think there are many units who would be a part of "the District" but have been discouraged and shut out because their opinions we contrary to the “good ole boy network†at a council level. As a result, they focus on the good of their own troop instead.

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As with everything there are good districts and there are bad districts, in districts there are good committees and bad committees.

Many of our district volunteers have moved on from troops after their boys have aged out or have been recruited to help because they have a particular talent or interest.

We currently do not have a DC, but if the old one wasn't a personal friend I don't know if I would have known him.  Our UC has been around a couple times, but our unit functions pretty well so we don't really need him.  I do know that UC and our DC have saved some packs and troops who were struggleing, but if a unit is doing well I am not sure they are needed.  Our new membership chair is great.  He brought new blood and fresh ideas in and is making a real impact.  Our advancement chair sucks.  Our activities committee puts on fun and unique camporees.  I am a bit biased about our trainig committee, but they do multiple courses in different locations around the district.  Our DE seems to always be around and has actually helped our unit out when BOR were not being done properly.

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I am okay with this. It was my suspicion as well. I was just curious if better run districts actually have value for every unit beyond the EBOR rep.

 

I haven't found it  yet, but I am getting over a bad DE, and the new one is still wet behind the ears.

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The post from @@andysmom above has me thinking. We hear so much about good districts and bad districts. I live in the latter and it has been that way for a while. They live for the good old boy/girl network, they only want stuff from units, they don't provide any UCs. When they do provide UCs they come around asking for stuff, not offering to help. When they *do* help it is no where near effective or wanted. They seem very self-involved. RTs are nothing more than a waste of gas and time. Stuff gets printed out which could be sent electronically. In short, these districts are a waste.

 

I'd be interested in hearing what "good districts" do? What makes them effective? Why are they valuable and worth the time to attend or get involved in? What do units get out of them? If you are a stable, high-functioning unit, are they still valuable?

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