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Why did BSA make Cub Scouting more expensive?


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On 9/13/2022 at 3:14 PM, qwazse said:

Defunding the World Crest is a non-starter. You might not feel it, but your scout benefits from the World Organization of Scouting Movement supporting scouts in nations with financial issues more prohibitive than only the poorest of Americans will ever experience. Because of WOSM, your scout might one day find himself with a hiking buddy from the farthest corner of the earth.

I'm not suggesting defunding the World Crest. I just question its appropriateness on a Cub Scout uniform (again, I'm approaching this from the perspective of a cost-conscious parent who is new to Scouting). The purple emblem itself isn't so bad, but what's with the ring emblem around it? That is new since I was a youth. Does it have a purpose or is it purely ornamental? It may not look so bad on an adult uniform, but it takes up significant space on a blue uniform shirt.

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some observations & wisdom from a DL & ADL for two boys from tiger to AOL. (disclaimer: we were in a large pack, 85-110 scouts in an upper middle class zip code in Wake Co. NC.) We o

Sept 21, 2022: Uniform Bank WATERVILLE, Maine (WGME) - After a year of collecting donated Cub Scout and Boy Scout uniforms at Goodwill stores in Northern New England, the Kennebec Valley Uniform

Maybe we should modernize a bit and use The Lion King instead.  I have a group of boys I would nominate for the hyenas.   

On 9/17/2022 at 6:05 AM, BetterWithCheddar said:

what's with the ring emblem around it? That is new since I was a youth. Does it have a purpose or is it purely ornamental? It may not look so bad on an adult uniform, but it takes up significant space on a blue uniform shirt.

Agreed. A cost that is not needed. Those are “just for fun”. No point other than adding bling. 

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I remember when the world crest was given after attending an international event.

 

Regarding neckerchiefs, when did they change from the cub scout yellow for all cubs, then a blue webelos? Having a different neckerchief for bobcat, wolf, etc... seems excessive. At the troop level, they have only one, except an Eagle Scout might wear an Eagle neckerchief. 

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16 minutes ago, DuctTape said:

I remember when the world crest was given after attending an international event.

Yes, that changed August 1, 1989. I remember the date because I was on a bus in Canada in the middle of an international trip and was told you no longer had to earn the WC. A lot of folks were upset.

On 9/17/2022 at 7:05 AM, BetterWithCheddar said:

 I just question its appropriateness on a Cub Scout uniform (again, I'm approaching this from the perspective of a cost-conscious parent who is new to Scouting). 

Purpose of the WC is to show the world brotherhood of Scouting. it is the one patch that every Scout wears regardless of where they live.

 

19 minutes ago, DuctTape said:

Regarding neckerchiefs, when did they change from the cub scout yellow for all cubs, then a blue webelos? Having a different neckerchief for bobcat, wolf, etc... seems excessive. 

Sometime in the mid to late 1970s. I know I was switching neckers as a Cub Scout in the 1980s, but my older brothers did not in the late 1960s/early 1970s.

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1 hour ago, DuctTape said:

Regarding neckerchiefs, when did they change from the cub scout yellow for all cubs, then a blue webelos? Having a different neckerchief for bobcat, wolf, etc... seems excessive. At the troop level, they have only one, except an Eagle Scout might wear an Eagle neckerchief. 

Troops aren't broken down by rank the way a pack is, so having the necker change wouldn't be as useful as it is for cubs.  It's nice to be able to find at a glance that one kid who has wandered off with his brother's den.


Our pack solved the cost problem of the multiple neckerchiefs by asking parents to donate back any old neckerchiefs and slides they didn't want, then buying enough more to have a complete set.  Now all neckerchiefs are owned by the pack and loaned out for the year.   We always end up short a few slides at the end of the year, but that's a manageable expense for the pack to cover if it lets us shave $20 off the start up cost for new scouts.

 

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Just now, cmd said:

Troops aren't broken down by rank the way a pack is, so having the necker change wouldn't be as useful as it is for cubs.  It's nice to be able to find at a glance that one kid who has wandered off with his brother's den.


Our pack solved the cost problem of the multiple neckerchiefs by asking parents to donate back any old neckerchiefs and slides they didn't want, then buying enough more to have a complete set.  Now all neckerchiefs are owned by the pack and loaned out for the year.   We always end up short a few slides at the end of the year, but that's a manageable expense for the pack to cover if it lets us shave $20 off the start up cost for new scouts.

 

Hey, do  den activity to make your own slide!!! A few pieces of cut PVC, glue, paint, and googly eyes... whammy!!!  den creative activity and cost savings.  Find some belt loop that counts for!!  Ditch the BSA sliide!!!

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Sept 21, 2022: Uniform Bank

WATERVILLE, Maine (WGME) - After a year of collecting donated Cub Scout and Boy Scout uniforms at Goodwill stores in Northern New England, the Kennebec Valley Uniform Bank gave away 300 of them Wednesday night at the Waterville Goodwill.

“It’s a huge factor. I mean there are some parents that would decide to not be in scouting or leave scouting just because of the initial cost," said Chris Bernier of Kennebec Valley Uniform Bank.

“There’s a lot of costs to everything with it (Scouts) to be honest. So, if we can save a little bit of money here, it’s going to be good for us," said Chelsea McCollett of Augusta.

More including video, photos at source:

https://wgme.com/news/local/organization-gives-free-boy-scout-uniforms-for-maine-families-who-cannot-afford-them

Edited by RememberSchiff
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I love the idea of the uniform bank being coordinated outside the pack/troop.

That avoids the problem of families who are embarrassed about charity AND those who are keeping their distance because they may have left scouts on bad terms or just don't want to deal with a hard sell from leaders wanting them to come back. 

Plus, it keeps you from ending up with pack A having all the medium kids only small shirts and pack B having all the medium shirts and small kids. 

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On 9/19/2022 at 3:22 PM, cmd said:

Troops aren't broken down by rank the way a pack is, so having the necker change wouldn't be as useful as it is for cubs.  It's nice to be able to find at a glance that one kid who has wandered off with his brother's den.

Agreed. I find the different colored neckerchiefs useful for distinguishing between dens and helping younger scouts get to the appropriate place. It's the different neckerchief slides for each age group that seem unnecessary. One neckerchief slide for the entire Cub Scout program would be sufficient.

Somewhat related:  I noticed ScoutShop.org is having a 20% off flash sale today (9/24) with code AUTUMN.

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I guess I am used to a cub program which was 95% done at the den level. Dens met completely separately from the pack. The only interaction with otjer dens was pinewood derby and B&G. Pack meetings were rare and short, and we just stayed together as a den or with our parents.

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3 hours ago, DuctTape said:

I guess I am used to a cub program which was 95% done at the den level. Dens met completely separately from the pack. The only interaction with otjer dens was pinewood derby and B&G. Pack meetings were rare and short, and we just stayed together as a den or with our parents.

Dens were originally designed to meet in the neighborhood, usually at the den leaders home. The monthly pack meeting was a big event when all the dens would come together and show off what they had been doing including crafts, skits, songs, opening and closing ceremonies and also badges that had been earned during the prior month were presented. It was a big deal. These days many, if not most, packs tend to meet together every week and after an opening, they have breakouts for the dens. It kind of takes some of the magic and excitement out of the old getting together once a month. Also, it locks all the dens into a specific night. It used to be that the den leaders could hold their meetings when it was most convenient for them. Weeknights, evenings, weekend... the only date that was locked in was the pack night. I think the 'old' was was much better in serving the kids and leaders. 

 

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On 9/24/2022 at 11:30 AM, Ojoman said:

These days many, if not most, packs tend to meet together every week and after an opening, they have breakouts for the dens. It kind of takes some of the magic and excitement out of the old getting together once a month. Also, it locks all the dens into a specific night. It used to be that the den leaders could hold their meetings when it was most convenient for them. Weeknights, evenings, weekend... the only date that was locked in was the pack night. I think the 'old' was was much better in serving the kids and leaders. 

 

Our pack used to meet all on one night, but not necessarily in the same space, and one of the other two packs in our area takes over a church building for the evening for den meetings, but the only time the kids are all together is if it's nice enough to hang out all together outside before the meetings start.  Having them on the same night just makes it easier to schedule.  If a den normally meets on Mondays, then trying to get those kids to a pack meeting on Weds is hard.  The family generally has other stuff scheduled for other nights and needs to designation one day as the one that they are going to have scout stuff.  We also encourage parents to stay for the meetings even after the kids age out of the "parent partner" stage, but don't absolutely require it if the kids are okay without their parent along.  So, having the dens meet at the same time helps free up parents to attend their Lion/Tiger meeting without having to figure out how to occupy their Wolf/Bear/Webelos child.  

Although we only meet together at the pack meeting, we also have at least one pack activity going on each month (hike, leaf raking for the place we meet, camping, pinewood, blue & gold, scouting for food, zoo or aquarium trip...) and when the kids are all dressed the same and running ahead of you, knowing what den a kid belongs to at least narrows down which child you might be looking at.  

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11 hours ago, cmd said:

Our pack used to meet all on one night, but not necessarily in the same space, and one of the other two packs in our area takes over a church building for the evening for den meetings, but the only time the kids are all together is if it's nice enough to hang out all together outside before the meetings start.  Having them on the same night just makes it easier to schedule.  If a den normally meets on Mondays, then trying to get those kids to a pack meeting on Weds is hard.  The family generally has other stuff scheduled for other nights and needs to designation one day as the one that they are going to have scout stuff.  We also encourage parents to stay for the meetings even after the kids age out of the "parent partner" stage, but don't absolutely require it if the kids are okay without their parent along.  So, having the dens meet at the same time helps free up parents to attend their Lion/Tiger meeting without having to figure out how to occupy their Wolf/Bear/Webelos child.  

Although we only meet together at the pack meeting, we also have at least one pack activity going on each month (hike, leaf raking for the place we meet, camping, pinewood, blue & gold, scouting for food, zoo or aquarium trip...) and when the kids are all dressed the same and running ahead of you, knowing what den a kid belongs to at least narrows down which child you might be looking at.  

Glad to see the regular activities. Our pack had both pack activities and encouraged the dens to do field trips on their own. A lot of places you can take 6 or 8 kids but not larger groups. Our den toured the airport including one of the control towers and another time went to a pizza hut and the kids were allowed to make their own personal pizza. We tipped heavy on the pizza trip especially since they didn't charge for the pizza and drinks. Cubs builds memories.  for a lifetime. 

 

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