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Scouterabouter

Help! Pack, Troop and Crew sponsored by same CO

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I am the former Cubmaster and present Chartered Rep of our Scouting program of our church. We sponsor three active units which have a close relationship; sharing a hut, equipment, siblings and leaders... we serve over 60 youth. We are blessed that the units communicate well, but we are having growing pains.

 

I sense that we are in need of a joint committee to handle common issues and responsibilities- scout hut care (clean up days/ ongoing needs), joint unit events (Planning meeting at start of year, Scout Sunday, crossovers & end of year joint campout etc..) and other items which need discernment by the 3 units.

 

I understand and encourage that each unit is autonomous, but we need to continue to cooperate for the good of the program...Does anybody have a template for the above? Goals? Written guidelines? Organization? Whats worked for your CO?

 

Thanks!

 

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Hello Scouter,

 

 

Sounds like yiou have a terrific program, congratulations!

 

 

I think I'd invite the Committee Chairs of each unit for a meeting to discuss your common problems. Perhaps there is a need for one or more units to do a service project to deal with maintenance or neatness issues, and to develope some common standards for how your Scout Hut will be left after meetings.

 

I presume you have ways of financing the expenses for maintenance, repair and improvement of the Scout Hut. There should be a way to pay for taking the Committee Chairs out for coffee at Starbucks or some other treat to encourage attendance and make them feel special.

 

You might want to schedule such gatherings on a quarterly basis to encourage cooperation and deal with common issues. Just a thought, but it might be nice to have an annual gathering to which all Scout groups would be encouraged to attend to build a sense of comaraderie.

 

Of course as COR the Committee Chairs are dependent on having your support to continue in their positions. But I'm sure you wouldn't have to point that out to them to get their co-operation.

 

 

 

 

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We do a few things you state, but not all..

 

Maybe our central coordinator is our active COR, who goes to our committee meetings and makes sure our scout sunday, crossovers, shared shed cleanup are coordinated. She goes to all the committee meetings and passes on any info from the other units effecting us..

 

When our COR passed away a few years back, there was about 2 years of a COR on paper only, and the coordination between the units did fall apart.. Now it is running well with a new COR in place.

 

If you put together a committee, I would suggest something very loose, like 3 people of the different units, agreeing to discuss coordinations about every quarter (or when needed).. Or going to one of the committee meetings (on occasion when needed, like just before crossover or your group campout) to pass & recieve info, and then bring the info back to their committee.. Rather then having something meeting every month on an official copacity.. I just can't see the between unit communication needing that sort of structure.

 

Let your official unit committees run seperatly as is. I know our commitee runs longer then we'd like when doing one units buisness, I would hate to see it stretched out to deal with 3 different units buisness..

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Welcome to da forums, scouterabouter.

 

Many ways to do what you suggest. I know of one local church that has a common scouting board of directors/committee across all three programs. They do all the common big picture work, providing campership support, overseeing finance and capital expense stuff, selecting unit leaders.

 

Then each program has a parent volunteer group under the direction of the unit leader ( SM, CM, Advisor) and a volunteer coordinator.

 

That might work for yeh, especially if da CO is well involved. It separates program governance from worker stuff, which prevents conflict.

 

Yeh can make a lightweight version of that with just da CC and unit leader of each program, led by the COR. Yeh just have to be careful to define its scope, so that no one unit feels put upon.

 

Some units with large assets like a boat or a scout hut establish a separate foundation and board just to hold and manage those assets. That can work OK, too.

 

Beavah

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And you're also crew advisor?

 

It sounds like until you get more folks to hold the different essential positions, you don't need another committee.

 

Maybe you could have three joint committee meetings spread throughout the year (e.g. pack-troop, troop-crew, pack-crew). This would be instead of the regular individual committees. That way you aren't asking anyone to add another meeting to their schedule, but you are making sure that folks get introduced to the adults from other units as a matter of course.

 

Also, how are the older youth involved in this? For example, the crew QM and troop QM should be putting up a roster for scout hut duties. Crew VP Program and troop SPL or ASPL should have a major say in the end of year campout. Your Crew President should be making a report to the Charter Org (ours does that formally at Scout Sunday).

 

The clearer it becomes how the youth are expected to cooperate, the easier it becomes for committees to work together.

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I understand your problem well, as I am the COR for all 3 units at our CO (about 100 youth). We just made a change two months ago and so far it seems to be helping.

 

All 3 committees and I meet from 7 - 7:45 (AT THE LATEST) and we only discuss common issues - scouting for food, family camp, new G2SS rules, Scout Sunday, etc. Then myself and my facilities coordinator step out into the common area and the three committees break into their respective rooms and have their meetings.

 

If I am needed to answer a question to deal with something simple, I may pop into one of the rooms, or if I want to talk about some larger looming issue I may also attend the units committee mtg.

 

Then we all meet briefly afterwards to mention anything that might have been forgotten earlier in the evening (or a change due to a revelation). Any unit that wants to continue talking, may do so after that point.

 

It addresses your issues of the common stuff and then allows the units to run their portion of the meeting.

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We have an active COR and he is our chief point of contact when dealing with the other units at our church, although our unit leaders do communicate well too . He has a yearly town hall meeting for everyone, as well as a key 2 meeting in August to go over the years events with the leadership of the different units.

 

There is one overall committee made up of members from each of the units and the church leadership to organize the infrastructure and joint website.There are various subcommittees that works year round to coordinate our joint activities such as the Great Day of Service, Scout Sunday, God and Country program, fund raising, and any other joint unit events that may come up. Other than that we operate as autonomous units having our own activities

 

We do have a procedure for requesting space. This includes a key point of contact from each unit so the church secretary does not get inundated with requests from everyone.

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