Scouts Canda: District vs. Group
David D. Miller +49 6221 404415 (DDM@DHDIBM1.BITNET)
Tue, 1 Sep 1992 14:27:00 CST
On the subject of doing a fresh outdoor training course, this not too
uncommon. The program does change from year to year, and some older
rules perhaps need renewed emphasis. (E.g., Current policy on using
pourable liquid fuels; New directive from the Forest Service on groups
of four or more in certain areas; etc.) GSUSA leaders need to do a
different Basic Training Part II when they move from one level to
another. There is a 95% overlap between levels, with the same
handouts being used, and often the courses for two or more levels being
done in one big group - but you still have to attend and get it signed
off. And GS Outdoor Training is not transferable between Councils.
As for having your menus and programs checked three weeks before, that
sounds extreme. For a weekend camp, our Scouts (not the leaders!)
write the menu on Thursday evening, and buy the food after school on
Friday and go to camp on Friday evening. If the store doesn't have
what's on the menu, the menu is changed to match what's in store.
The outline program is known further in advance, but three weeks is
still too far. At three weeks, our plan is usually: go to X Woods
for a campout.
On the other hand, a Troop going off for 9 days, travelling 500
miles, camping at two different sites, is a different question
altogether. Yes, that program needs approval! That menu needs to be
planned and checked! And six to eight weeks is more suitable.
You can last out a weekend without food, but nine days? What happens
when your planned visit to town for provisions coincides with a local
holiday? The first international camp I helped run had a four day
weekend in the middle, and our original plan had us stopping to
have a restaurant meal, cash checks, and buy food for the second
part of the hike in the middle of it. It was District that pointed
out the problem during open discussion about 8 *months* in advance.
At that stage some of the planning was already down to minutes,
and some meals had already been fixed.
When you're faced with unreasonable rules in your District, don't
hesitate to make it known that they're unreasonable. You'll probably
find that the three-week ruling is only for camps that are large, long
or far away, and that a Troop weekend in the field behind the Scout hut
isn't counted. Ask to see, in writing, the instruction from your
Council which the district is following!
Feel free to call up the Council or even National headquarters to ask
for clarification. Make it clear you've already asked the District
and you might be received somewhat better. (In the UK, the headquarters
teams have started publishing direct phone numbers for each of the
sections. Yes, they're busy people, but a problem out in the field
David D. Miller
Scouting in Europe - A Unique Experience
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City