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I'm having a problem and I don't think I'm alone. I am in denial. The problem is that a good portion of my troop, almost 1/3, will be aging out in the next 18 months. Heck, my son turns 16 in a few weeks...


I've only been SM of this troop for 2 years, but this current herd of boys has really gotten under my skin. Before it was one or two here or there that adopted me as their 2nd Dad, but now it's 8 fantastic young men that make me proud each and every day...God I'm gonna miss them.


Out of the 8, 2 are 99% complete with Eagle reqs, just some cleanup to go. 3 more are planning Eagle Projects, including my son, and the other 3 arent too far behind. What a crop.


I'm goin to have a real issue when it comes time to let them go. I'm probably going to have to seek counselling. It's tough having to forge relationships with a boy of 11 or so and give him many years of mentoring, training, discipline, more mentoring...only to have to turn him loose on the world.


At our committee meeting last week, my SPL was reporting the "State of the Troop" address to the adults. He and I work really well as a team. He's more capable than most of them quite frankly. He knows it and they know it. I was sitting in my folding chair (cause I'm just a guest for the meeting) next to this boys mom. I looked at her and told her that I'm in denial about his age. She patted me on the shoulder and said I could come play with him at her house anytime...ha!


And the next two groups coming along...They're great kids too..what am I gonna do. What a problem to have.



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It's a great "problem" to have, ain't it? :)


I'm constantly amazed a how our troop reinvents itself. There are 15 or so eager new faces at our meetings now, learning knots and fire-building from the old-hands who were learning that stuff themselves just yesterday (or so it seems!). The SPL, just now getting into the groove, is getting ready to hand the troop over to another young fellow who will make the same mistakes along his learning curve... New dads and moms are sitting on the committee meetings and coming on campouts. It's great!

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I agree with Trev. It is a good problem to have.

Trev. 25, I'm envious, we only received 4. We're rebuilding, only have 11-13.

kb, how close is this group? What are their future plans after 18, college, military or jobs in the area? Would they (the boys), the SO and the troop be willing to throw a Crew together? How many would stay on until 21? This would/could give you 3 more years of holding onto them, letting them achieving new goals and making you proud.

My 20y/o has always wanted to start one, but the ones who would be interested, their wings have spread them far and wide.

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I agree with Trev - troops seem to rejuvenate themselves. A few years ago we were 75% high schoolers, and in one year I saw 9 seniors graduate and age out of the troop. 6 of them Eagles, all PL's 5 had been SPL. I flet the same way. "What are we gonna do?" But it works out. Someone who you may not even think about steps up and things move on. We are now, just a few years later, completely opposite, with 20 crossovers or first year scouts. Hang in there!



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By the way, We do have a similar situation this year with our SPL. He is aging out this year, and has been the best SPL I have seen in 30+ years. And the pickings seem slim behind him! We want to phony up his credentials and make him 14 again! But someone will come through and do the job.

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I've been hinting about a crew to them, but they don't want to seriously talk about it up just yet. Most have been together for almost 12 years now, so they're really tightly bonded but ready to move on if you see what I mean.


12 years, 3/4 of thier young lives, have been spend in the same program with virtually the same people. That's a pretty heavy commitment already.


I've got 3 part time ASM's or JASM's now(get to see them when college schedules avail). I may be able to keep 2 or 3 at any rate in some form or another.


I've got one that is a very accomplished musician, but can't make up his mind at what he wants to study at college. Music? Nah, that's fun stuff, he want's to make lots of money...HA! One kid started his own business making custom pottery. He's very good at it, but hasn't made a dime since he's spending most of his time making "gifts" for others. One want's to be a Veternarian, one an electronics engineer...quite a diverse group.


As we spread them to the wind, like so many seeds, I think this is really where being a Scoutmaster will pay off...All those years of "fetilizing and germinating" will produce a great product for society to guage the success of our program. Don't get me wrong, I get "Paid back" every meeting, every outing, every occasion I'm with my kids, but seeing the character of a young man when he's away from the very people that spend years shaping and mentoring, that's the real goal here.


Besides, I'm pretty sure I'll be seing these boys on and off for a while. My father was a Scoutmaster in the 50's and 60's. He had some of his scouts still visiting him up until his death some years ago. I'm hoping for that to be the rule rather than the exception, but I'm sure that all depends on their experiences while they were/are in the troop.



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