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Does recruiting & Troop Fund Raising = Service Hours?

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Our Troop will have a table at an up coming community fair. The purpose of the table will be to bring about community awareness of the Troop, distribute information an upcoming Fund Raiser, and invite interested boys to become Scouts. The fair lasts about 5 hours.

 

We are asking Scouts to sign up and be at the table for at least one hour if not two.

 

Question: does this time constitute service hours?

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I wouldn't count it. What community service is the Troop providing, other than promoting the Troop? I don't see that as community service.

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Ok... thanks!

 

What I thought as well, but figured I'd bring it up here as some Scouts had asked, and an ASM (who is also the parental unit of one of those Scouts) believes the Scouts deserve something (i.e. service hours) for showing up, and had mentioned it to those Scouts... so I'm doing a bit of damage control...

 

In addition to the service hours issue, we are having some balking regarding wearing the full uniform somewhere friends might see...

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Nope, I wouldn't count it either.

 

For those who don't want to wear the uniform to a recruiting event - well you aren't requiring them to attend, are you?

 

I would consider putting this in the category of helping the troop. But that doesn't make it service, and in the real world you don't always get "something" just because you showed up.

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If you mean does it count toward Star or Life communtiy service requirements? No. This is a service to the troop, not the community. Even if it's in a small way, the benefit eventually accrues to the Scouts, especially the fundraising. On the other hand if the troop just tracks community service hours, such as for Good Turn For America, what the heck.

 

May I assume a fairly small number of the troop's Scouts will be required to staff the booth? If so, it seems to me there needs to be some benefit to the Scouts who help out vs. those who do not. May dinner on the troop, after the event?

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It doesn't pass as a true service project so the answer there is no. For Star and Life the goal of service hours is to get help them understand what the Eagle project will be like.

 

When we did middle school recruiting we ask the boys to at least wear a CLEAN troop t-shirt. This helps somewhat. My son was telling me that the peer pressure is very intense in middle school these days. The girls seem particularly vocal with bias these days.

 

We use a pizza party for these types of events, usually after the event at a troop meeting.

 

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Why do they have to get something? Isn't "Thanks for helping" enough? Are we that far gone?

 

I would not count it.

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Geez, let's keep that selfish "what's in it for me" attitude going strong. Even when they are trying to help their own troop let's reward them with requirements or a party. This will produce a great base for our society in the future. Our troop had a similar type of activity where we set up a table at the local community day event in the town park. I asked boys to sign up and be at the location at a certain time to help set up and run the info booth. Out of the 18 boys who signed up only 10 made it, some could only stay for a few hours but the time they could give was well appreciated. I had received a decent bonus from work and was really thinking how or what to do with some of the money. Well at the end of the next meeting where I get my chance to address the troop, I called up 8 of the 10 boys (2 could not make the meeting) and annouced that for their unselfish act of helping the troop and giving of their free time I was going to pay $50.00 of their summer camp fee. Because what they had done shown was what true scouts are or should be. Many of the parents are in the back during the end of our meetings waiting for their boys. I never saw so many jaws drop at one time in my life. The following week at the committee meeting some of these parents came to voice their anger at me "showing favoritism" to certain boys. Once they all had their say like "If I would have known you were doing that then my son would have been there". I stood and told them that as scouts and good members of the community they should not be willing to do something just because there is something in it for them. That the 10 boys who did show up and give service did it only because they felt or believed it was the right thing to do. Some of these boys and their families were at the event they just didn't want to be seen by others as being boy scouts. So let's keep it going and keep on teaching our boys that service and time spent should always have some kind of reward. I guess the reward of just knowing that you did something that was right and helpful just does not cut it today.

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eagle77 - Your story reminds me of something I did earlier this year...

 

We had done a particularly difficult orienteering course, and only a few Scouts finished it. Several Scouts had just quit and went back to camp to hang around the fire.

 

At the next Troop meeting I presented ice cream bars to the Scouts who had completed the course. After the meeting, several parents and committee members approached me and demanded I never do that again because some of the Scouts who didn't get ice cream felt bad about it. They told me only to give rewards if everyone gets one.

 

What's the point of that??!!

 

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Well to add a little more to that, four of the ten families returned the money and asked that it be used to help out other scouts in the troop who maybe were not as well off as they were. To me that is a scouting type of attitude. While we were at summer camp I ran into 3 of the 4 boys at the trading post, it was hot and dry out and I asked them if they would like to have a slush puppy with me. After getting them we walked outside and 1 of the boys asked "why did you buy these for us?' I simply replied "because it feels good". We need to further teach our youth that they sometimes will need to do something just because it feels good and for no other reason then that.

 

That all or nothing attitude is why many boys and girls today do not apply themselves or work harder at things. Why should they try and do better and stick it out, the others who did little or nothing will get the same thing as me, so why go the extra mile?

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