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National releases membership numbers. All programs down 40-48%


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8 hours ago, CynicalScouter said:

And this was just 2020 (first year of major LDS impact)

2021 charter year data (units rechartering in late fall 2020 to December 2020) is going to reflect the COVID hits and be a disaster.

I'm betting Cubs go below 1 million.

Well, that's a good bet considering the 2020 Cubs number is just under 650,000.  Seems like this membership drop can't totally be explained by the LDS departure.  Articles from the time of the 2018 announcement (they'd already dropped Venturing the year before) said LDS boys accounted for 18.5% of the 2.3 million members.  Estimates I recall said 450,000 members, give or take, which is consistent with the math in the linked article.  So the LDS departure can only explain about half of the almost million member loss over the last two years.  It would be interesting to know how the December 2020 numbers were counted.  If they are still counting members from units with "late" charter packets, then yeah, 2021 will be problematic.

My question is what is the critical mass of Cubs required to keep Scouts BSA alive?  A 1.4:1 ratio doesn't seem like enough.

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There are also regional breakdowns http://filestore.scouting.org/filestore/commissioner/newsletter/2021_winter/KPI_NatlRegion.pdf

I can tell you, having been either DL or ADL for both of my boys from tiger to AOL, (They are two years apart in age) that the cub program is way to long & repetitive. IMO.  I'm just an amateur sc

As a Skipper for a ship that is connected with the people at national that run this because we are basically already running on our own.   There isn't inventory for Sea Scouts, the amount that BSA pay

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8 hours ago, Eagle1993 said:

Well, it should be easier to get our desired Treks at Philmont going forward.... assuming we still own it. 

Don't worry, there's always room at The Summit (do we capitalize The??).  It's on the books for $345 million...and a bargain at that no doubt 😀

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3 hours ago, Eagle1993 said:

A lot of this has to be Covid impact, correct?  Are the 2020 numbers late 2020 or January 2020.  If they are January 2020 we are in SERIOUS trouble.  If late 2020, I think it will bounce back.

the other thread with these numbers said December 2020.  Not sure if that includes the 2021 recharter year or not.

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2 hours ago, walk in the woods said:

the other thread with these numbers said December 2020.  Not sure if that includes the 2021 recharter year or not.

Yeah, if Dec 2020 ... it's sad but not as alarming.   Covid.  LDS transition.  Price shock.  I know one local pack that is not 100% registering all youth or all adults due to cost of registering.  So if the family is tight on funds or the scout doesn't care as much about advancement, then the scout doesn't know but the pack doesn't "charter" the scout.  I can't blame them.  The only thing really on record about cub scouts is AOL.

Plus, we really need to consider the results of 20 years of bad press.  BSA has had a target on it's head for a really long time.  We've lost a generation of youth because of bad press.  It always makes me very sad. 

Personally ... some of this begs the original question.  Why scouting?  What draws kids?  What pushes them away?  ... I really don't think this is as hard as we think.  

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6 hours ago, Eagle1993 said:

 

 

A lot of this has to be Covid impact, correct?  Are the 2020 numbers late 2020 or January 2020.  If they are January 2020 we are in SERIOUS trouble.  If late 2020, I think it will bounce back.

My other question is strategy going forward.  We have a lot of small units in my area.  All of us struggle to get enough volunteers.  Is it time for BSA councils to look through their unit lists and work with unit leaders on a consolidation plan? 

I am Scoutmaster for a Troop, CC and Den leader for a Pack.  I cannot and do not do all 3 of these well and my primary focus is as SM.  However, I cannot find anyone to volunteer for the other roles (I threatened to let the Pack die and came back at the 11th hour to recharter it when no one else stepped up).  My wife said Dec 2021 I should just let it die and move our daughter to a different pack.  That makes me sick as our Pack has been chartered for 84 straight years ... but I'm done.

At Klondike I talked with many leaders.  SMs who are CMs as well.  SMs, CC, CMs, DL combos.  Its simply not sustainable.  I do not believe we have the volunteer corp to support the number of units we have, let alone the number of districts and councils.  This is making our existing units weaker and leading to further loss.  I believe less units, councils and possibly districts could lead to a better program and then gains in numbers.  That will take BSA leadership making the right calls on what units are healthy and strong vs the weak.

 

I believe consolidating Units would be the way to go, however our DEs are evaluated on the number of Units in their District, so they will always consider quantity over quality.  Many people are also sentimental about their Charter Org. and their history and would rather exist with fewer members and less support before they would merge or join another Unit.  In my neighborhood alone three Packs have folded and a fourth is hanging on, mostly because they just celebrated their 60th anniversary. Getting volunteers has become so difficult that place holder names are being used in order to recharter.  I recently spoke to a Cubmaster who has zero help other than his wife.   It has become a very stressful burden on him to 'carry on the tradition' of his Pack.  In my own Troop we couldn't get a Scoutmaster to step up until discussions were initiated by the Charter Org. to shut it down.  How long can this go on without volunteers?

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There is not much if any of a COVID reduction.   March numbers reflect recharters which in this case LDS would account for the majority of the reduction.  End of March 2020 total was 1143000,  Dec 1199425 which is likely some of the fall recruiting.

 

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Wait, there are still 2 Varsity Teams registered? It is some things like this that amaze me about the BSA. Make them register as a Crew and MOVE ON. 

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6 hours ago, mrjohns2 said:

Wait, there are still 2 Varsity Teams registered? It is some things like this that amaze me about the BSA. Make them register as a Crew and MOVE ON. 

I heard those Teams play dodgeball against each other. 😜

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15 hours ago, PACAN said:

There is not much if any of a COVID reduction.   March numbers reflect recharters which in this case LDS would account for the majority of the reduction.  End of March 2020 total was 1143000,  Dec 1199425 which is likely some of the fall recruiting.

 

Yeah, I am really interested if this is pre or post Covid.  Most recharters didn't really become official until January 2021.  That is when the real impact of Covid would show up.  For example, my Pack went from ~50 scouts in December 2020 to 24 scouts in January 2021.  I expect many others as well.  However, the 2020 numbers are so low ... I really hope they include Covid. 

I do concur that we should see a rebound this fall.  I plan a major push as we get back to outings, indoor meetings, etc.  

 

 

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19 minutes ago, Eagle1993 said:

Yeah, I am really interested if this is pre or post Covid.  Most recharters didn't really become official until January 2021.  That is when the real impact of Covid would show up.  For example, my Pack went from ~50 scouts in December 2020 to 24 scouts in January 2021.  I expect many others as well.  However, the 2020 numbers are so low ... I really hope they include Covid. 

I do concur that we should see a rebound this fall.  I plan a major push as we get back to outings, indoor meetings, etc.  

 

 

That is what I have been trying to figure out. To my recollection, I'd already seen estimates that we'd be around 1.2 million before Covid hit; I was expecting a lower number after Covid. If this is December 2020, I don't think it would capture that.  I don't know if we have to wait until next year to find out. If there was an even more substantial hit than this, though, I expect we might hear more in the months to come because that would certainly affect operating cash flow for BSA and it might come up in the bankruptcy case. 

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On 3/4/2021 at 11:08 PM, Eagle1993 said:

Well, it should be easier to get our desired Treks at Philmont going forward.... assuming we still own it. 

I debated whether to laugh at this, or not.  

So far, our Council says summer camp is a go.  I sure hope so.  Getting the units active again will be SO important.

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2 hours ago, RememberSchiff said:

Even with 120,000 new girl recruits, just 1.2M youth in BSA? This is half a million less than GSUSA which reports 1.7M girls registered. 

Well, statistics might not relate to active youth. Everyone is hurting in that respect.

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