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Eagle1993

Council Annual Report - Interesting Numbers

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I am really glad to hear that people are making those kinds of changes.  That is so much better than insisting on continuing under-powered councils and seeing them go down in membership and financial bankruptcy.

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Posted (edited)
47 minutes ago, Saltface said:

This is already in process. Grand Canyon Council will be absorbing Catalina Council some time this year. This will result in one council covering most of Arizona. The SE for GCC has announced the elimination of nine staff positions and the formation of a committee to determine what scout camps should be sold.

Saltface, thanks for your post, I was unaware this was happening.  Kind of a shock.   I was in Catalina Council as a youth...summer camp, OA, Eagle. 

It will be interesting to see if GCC closes Catalina's Camp Lawton.  Though I have fond memories of Lawton from my days as a scout, when I visited a couple years ago I was surprised at how run down it looked.

Sad to see these old councils go but it's a sign of the times.

Edited by desertrat77

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Cburkhardt....the BSA franchise model will not allow a unit to pick its council or district regardless if the unit or units are getting poor or no customer service even if they are on the border of another council.   

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What I mean is that the CORs should insist on effective change in the failing council or advocate merging with a nearby council that is well-run.  We need to avoid irrational attachments to the status quo if there are better ways to run Scouting.  Doing more of the same gets us to membership and financial bankruptcy in those situations.  What has been proven to be very difficult is for CORs to expect that they themselves can substantially correct organizational deformities in a consistently failing council.  We are volunteers and do not have the time and resources to do that.  We do not want to have exhaust ourselves being negative for many years.  Even if it means merging OA lodges, re-drawing district lines or even realigning properties, it is better that a slow, fading disintegration.  What is important is that we have strong, vibrant units and knowing when to cut bait is critical.

A very good way to evaluate the capability of a council right now is to look at how many girl Troops have been formed.  This is, absolutely, the membership and program priority of the moment.  Even if you are a Scouter that has not yet embraced the concept, you will agree with me that a council that has not successfully acted on this has a fundamental difficulty.  These girl units can nearly sell themselves.  I am Scoutmaster of one and these are already popular.  Any council mumbling an explanation as to why they can’t pull this off is telling you: “We are not able to execute basic things”.  If they are saying that by their actions, believe them.

  • Upvote 1

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Posted (edited)
On 4/15/2019 at 4:58 PM, Eagle1993 said:

So... is this a clear indication of clearing out ghost members?  At first glance the numbers are concerning showing a large drop in members.  But the raw numbers in advancement show increases... which doesn’t make sense unless the members dropped were not real members.

 

That's what it was in our troop.  The way our finances are handled, people could run a negative account balance with the troop until it was like -$75 so we had 15-20 scouts on our books that hadn't really attended anything at all for a couple of years.  When they increased the annual fee from $24 to $33 per year our troop made a specific effort to weed out kids that had stopped coming and dropped them from the books if they weren't interested in participating anymore.  At meetings and camp-outs, nothing changed, but on paper our troop dropped from 75 boys to around 55.

Edited by elitts

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Our council numbers were steadily declining over last 7 years (~2% per year), but nothing like this.   I was told there are a large number of units barely getting by and many are folding.   Nearly 80% of our DEs have < 1 year in the job.  Several were fired or resigned last year.  My district was the only one that grew from 2017.

Our council supports adding girls, but wasn’t aggressively helping.  We only have a few Troops formed.

I’ve talked to a few Troop SMs who are saying they are having trouble finding ASMs that want to take over.  

All of this is concerning...

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If this is systemic across the Council, some of the CORs and leaders of units might request consideration of a merger into another Council that is more functional.  They might suggest merger discussions to the Council key-three.  It is not a good strategy to "wait until help arrives" in these situations.

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Follow up...

sounds like the drop off was due to elimination of some inactive ScoutReach groups and very late rechartering by many units.   Those units didn’t charter until the numbers had to be set.

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Sorry, Eagle.  That just does not add-up.  I think there has to be more than that at stake in your council.  Either that or they had a good number of “paper units”.  Sounds like they are in a tough spot.

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On 6/5/2019 at 6:36 PM, Eagle1993 said:

sounds like the drop off was due to elimination of some inactive ScoutReach groups 

AKA the money ran out. 

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