Monday night another young man joined our Troop. He is a 6th grader, never been in Scouts before and looking for adventure. I met him and his parents and he joined right into the gathering activity fitting in with his new Patrol mates as if he’d been in the Troop for years. His parents had some concern, I mean, what parent wouldn’t be a bit aprehensive about send their son off with strangers. In the course of our conversation I asked them what they wanted their son to get out of Scouting. Fun, life lessons, adventures? What was it that they considered when they brought their kid to us?
The first thing they talked about was their boy growing to be a bit more responsible and independant. Then they talked about life skills and fun. They understood that in Scouting their son will develop leadership and responsibility. They asked about service to others and character building. In short.. they asked all the right questions.
They want their boy to one day earn his Eagle award, but that was not the main thing. They want him to have fun with a group of young men that have a common interest and shared values.
You see, sometimes we get so caught up in merit badge extravagangzas and how many seat belts we need for a camp out that we forget that main thing. What is it? Citizenship, Character, and Fitness. The program is centered on those three things and when you keep them in the middle and build your unit around that… well it grows, its active, and it a fun place to be. The other night at our Troop meeting we welcomed a new Scout. He is number 41 on the roster. We have had our share of gains and losses, but in the end they come back to a fun unit that is full of adventure, fun, and lessons for life. all of that wrapped up in the main thing.
As our new parents watched as the Scouts did a Kayak relay in the parking lot Monday night, they commented on how friendly the Scouts were and how they all seemed to be a good group of boys. Thats the character of our unit, and it comes from staying focused on the main thing. The rest will come.
Have a Great Scouting Day!