Wood Badge Beads in reply to Mary Lee
(no name) ((no email))
Thu, 16 May 1991 12:57:00 MST
Sorry Mary Lee, many of us in Scouting on this network tend to forget that
not every is in BOY SCOUTS and not everyone is even in the BOY SCOUT part
of BSA (WEBELOS is technically the CUB SCOUT part of BSA). Wood Badge is a
world wide traning program for adults. It was started at Gilwell and I am
sure that there are pleanty of people out there who can give you a better
history than I can.
When you complete this training you are given a leather string with two
beads attached to it. The beads are wood and desinged after the original
beads given out by Baden Powell (BP) at the first Wood Badge Traning course.
The legend has it that the beads that BP gave out at the first Wood Badge
were from a necklace given to him by an African tribal Chief. The wood
beads are what give Wood Badge it's name. When ever you hear a vetern
scouter from anywhere around the world refer to his beads, he is talking
about his Wood Badge Beads.
Many Councils, Troops, Packs, Order of the Arrow, Girl Scout troops, etc...
use beads as recognition for many things including advancement,
attendenace, and what ever else they think up to encourage participation.
But when vetern scouts say their beads they are refering to their Wood
Badge Beads. (Vetern scouters do not have to be old. I earned my beads
about ten years ago, I am in my mid thirties and consider myself a vetern
since I started scouting at age eight and never really quit).
An additional bead may be added to the two original beads when you serve on
Wood Badge Staff. I also beleive you can earn a fourth bead if you serve
as a Wood Badge ScoutMaster.
At one time there was a CUB SCOUT WOOD BADGE Course in the USA. Some
councils may still offer this course, but it is rare. The last Council I
know of to offer this couse was San Diego.
I hope I have cleared up the beads stuff for you Mary Lee (and for anyone
else who may have been confused by this reference). You can find out more
about Wood Badge Traning by contacting your local Scout Office (or your
D.E. in the U.S.). The training is excellent leadership training and I
have even known colleges to allow college credit for this course. The only
pre-requisits I know of in the USA is the requirement to take the Scout
Leaders basic training before you take this course. I do not remember if
you have to be registered in BSA to take the course (forgive, it has been
ten years) here in the USA. What I am getting at I guess, is that this is
a good course even you are a leader in Girl Scouts, YMCA, or any other
group that deals with the outdoors and mostly with developing leadership in
youth. Do not let you membership and participantion in another youth group
keep you from taking the course if you are interested.
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City