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Into my sixth year as SM for our Troop. Amazing things have happened over that time. Good recruitment - grew from nine scouts to twenty-four last spring. Unfortunately, we've lost two of those guys and another is on the fence. Not very active boys physically and/or don't want to be away from home, and they have been struggling even on an easy car camping trip. It happens.


Great new leaders, committee fully functional and trained, fantastic junior leaders training the next generation, and patrol method in full force.


Time for me to go. I've been dealing with health issues for several years now and it has finally become apparent to me that I just can't keep up the pace. Sure, everyone understands when I can't go camping on certain trips or backpacking at all. The thing is, it saddens me so much to wave goodbye as the Troop pulls out to go on these trips. Still, the folks don't want me to step down.


In any case, the decision has been made and I'll be stepping down in the spring of 2011. A year and a half to go. That will give us another good recruitment this spring, time for summer camp planning and for our ASMs to see what that entails, and a chance for any new leaders from the recruitment to get trained and up to speed on how our troop operates. Good time to transition to a new Scoutmaster, rather than just leaving it all of a sudden (as was done to me).


While I'm sad about the decision, the time is right. I've done what I set out to do in changing the culture of our troop. It is strong. We have an excellent program. The boys are working well together and in charge. The adults are all trained or in process of finishing training. They "get" what Boy Scouting is all about.


Funny thing though. The Troop is running so well that I really have very little to do other than watch the boys, counsel those that need it, and generally enjoy the show.


No regrets. As it should be.



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Sorry to hear about you stepping down, but thatnks for what you have done. I am glad you are working on succession planning as I have seen units suffer with the loss of a good leader. One thing to make sure, and it sounds as if you got it under control, is to ensure teh patrol method is understood and used by the youth, as well as understood by the adults so they can leave the scouts alone, save in emergencies.


Also working with your replacement is great, not fun being handed things over and told "hear ya go."

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Yah, Scout Salute, gwd.


And yeh just don't know, eh?


Sometimes very active SMs need to just step back for a bit, recharge their own batteries, take care of personal stuff. Dat's OK.


Then often as not, they find they have the energy and da love to step back into the fray.


Whatever yeh do, don't leave Scoutin'. Lord knows we need good Commissioners ;).




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Considering what you've told me I know you made the best decision. And this plan gives them a good chance to make a smooth transition. I did something similar when I gave up CM to go to the troop. Just don't let them wait until the last minute.

Plus, I'll still be available for BBQ now and again. ;)

It really IS all about food, you know.:)

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Yea, similar situation for me.. son aged out this summer and big promotion at work is taking a lot of my time ( why does work always get in the way of the important things? ), nevertheless I'm signed on until Jan 2011 and working on the succession trail. I've got a really good ASM in mind and a new CM moving up with his son, so I think we'll be covered ok.


Though we haven't had as much success as GWD, we've managed to get the troop mostly boy run. ( Actually I've found that its the ADULTS who need the training in this area, not so much the scouts. ) More work to do in this next year.


I too am sad, but Mrs. CA_Scouter has given her support for me to continue perhaps as a Committee member and to attend the outings I choose. She's been wonderfully supportive all these years ( she's the Troop Chaplain this year ) but now that we are empty nesters I owe her a little more time.





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After many years, I stepped down 10 months ago. Everyone knew what they needed to do, but it turned into a huge mess. One loud mouthed father evidently didn't agree with the Committee's choice for the new Scoutmaster. He raised hell about it. And had to be removed from the Troop. Meanwhile the new Scoutmaster quit. The Committee asked a grandfather to take over. He had limited experience but didn't want to see his grandson lose his Troop. But it's the grandson who is a major part of the problem. Grandfather made him SPL, and he's taken his loud mouthed bully want to be attitude to a new high. Scouts have quit, and our once proud Troop of 20 active Scouts now has 6 Scouts. The Committee Chair isn't aware that he could have prevented this, I encouraged him to do so but nothing happened. The COR is useless, doesn't want to get involved, and just wants everyone to get along.


My church is the sponsor. I've received phone calls from parents and Scouts that have quit. I could only encourage them to try and make it better, or go to another Troop. Since the CC and COR don't want to hurt anyone's feelings, I had a meeting with the pastor and made him aware of things. He's a good guy, and knows of my many years as the SM, and how disappointed I was that things should be running better. It's in his hands now. I feel terrible, but sometimes you just got to let go.


Several other Troops in the immediate area, are barely able to re-charter. It's really bad around here. My old Troop was great, and Scouts were bringing their friends in for a good time camping (the Pack never was active consistantly), but with the big mouth SPL bossing everyone around, they leave. You'd figure someone would "get it." I hate to see this happen, but oh well. I still do District and OA Chapter stuff, so I haven't left Scouting.



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Hi guys. Thanks for the kind posts. sst3rd, I'm very sorry that happened to your troop. It's always amazing to me how one bad apple can spoil the whole bunch. Sorry, I know that's a cliche.


For me, I see some a few good possibilities among our ASMs. Each has his own strengths and weaknesses. Hah, listen to me, acting like I know it all!!


One man is very organized and totally gets the boy-led concept. Problem is, he may get it a bit too much and boy led into the ground could result. He is the biggest supporter of the way our troop is run and tells others about how our Troop really follows the program. He actually is, in my opinion, our best choice.


Another is a really nice guy, speaks well with the scouts without being confrontational. Problem is, I think he's too nice. Watched him counseling one of our homesick boys during summer camp. Kept sitting there talking to the boy, talk talk talk talk. Finally, I stepped up, told the lad to follow me to the health lodge to get something to settle his stomach, came back and sent him to bed. Lad was fine the next morning. ASM acts like a Dad too much for now. Also, his son has autism and his attention will most naturally be pulled away for his son.


Third ASM is very involved with his younger son in the Pack. Younger son will be going into his first year of Webelos by the time I step down, so it could be a good choice. He also needs a little more work in learning to get over Cubscouts, but he's the most middle of the road of the two above. His son, by the way, is one of those standout scouts that just eats up this stuff. Kid crossed over in April and I have no doubt he will be first class in just a couple more months.


Who knows, we will have another recruitment this spring and maybe some adult in that group will present as a possibility.


All I know for now is, I have another year and a half to have fun with the guys as much as I can, continue to help them grow into good scouts and honorable young men, and look forward to my weekly energy boost when I see them at our weekly meetings.


As our friend Barry would say, I just love this Scouting stuff.



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Note to Beavah: I'm not at all burned out on this. I love being a SM. If my health improves, which is doubtful, I'd continue on.


My time as a SM reminds me a lot of when personal computers first came out and the company I worked for back in the early 80s plopped one on my desk along with the manuals for DOS and Lotus. "Oh, yeah, this stuff is easy," I thought at the time. Realizing I'm being a bit big-headed here, it's so fun to stumble into something you're good at.

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Whe I stepped down as SM I joined the District Committee and am presently District Chairman.

It's great because to help the units in the whole district with program, activities, membership, training,

and funding. you hve a great crew if district volunteers to work with it's a great time.

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