SIMON THOMPSON (email@example.com)
Tue Feb 24 06:25:44 1998
I'd like to suggest the creation of a basic outdoor skills award/rank
for Venturers. Our post by-laws have a requirment which states that an
Explorer in Post 150 must have basic first-aid training. This can be
either through the first-aid merit badge or through some other agency
such as the Red Cross. The basic proficiency award/rank would include
such first-aid competency and also camping and outdoor skills. I'm not
concerned that young men and women who come to the program through
either Boy or Girl scouts will have these skills, it's the members who
have no scouting background that I'm concerned about. This would
provide a method of assuring that each member of an outdoor or
high-adventure related post would attain the necessary skills to be safe
and responsible in the backcountry.
Surely if Ventures start from around age 15 they should have been doing this for years. I started learning First Aid in Cubs and was a fully qualified camp leader by 14 (ie I had Camper, Camp Cook, Hiker and First aid proficiency badges) as did most of my scouting friends my age. By the time I reached Ventures I had spent over 1000 nights out of doors since joining Beavers aged 6 and had personally been Leader for 100 of those nights. It is also customary for new members to be thrashed into shape in the first few weeks (a favourite past time of Venture leaders is dropping you off in pairs in the middle of nowhere giving you a sleeping bag and telling you to get home) and surely these new ventures will not go out somewhere without a more experienced team leader. There is also the fact that not everyone can be prepared all the time, If something can go wrong it will.
PS I think everyone in scouting should be made to do first aid, you never know when it may be needed, I know, I snapped my Thigh bone in half playing soccer with my cub pack when I was 13. It received the usual stand up you ponce reception amongst working class lads. (The pain of biting your lip to stop showing yourself up by crying is nearly as bad as the break)