BSA Eagle Project
Darla Keller (C60DJK1@MVS.CSO.NIU.EDU)
Wed, 30 Nov 1994 18:44:00 CST
re: blood drive for Eagle project.
The subject of a blood drive for an Eagle Project has been dismissed
by several people on this list. I must disagree.
The requirements of an Eagle Project require a Scout to plan,
develop, and give leadership to a project benefitting a school,
church, or community. I don't have any printed material in front of
me so I'm going from memory.
The "real" project here is not the actual blood drive, as has been
stated that is done by the Red Cross or local blood bank. The "real"
project here is promoting a successful blood drive. Whether it is a
project worthy of Eagle Project status will depend on the quality of
the initial plan submitted by the youth.
If his plan involves a creative community education program and an
aggressive campaign for securing advance donors, utilizing members
of his troop and other community resources, then why wouldn't it be
a worthy Eagle Project.
I agree that an Eagle candidate should not expect some "canned" event
to qualify as an Eagle Project. That is always true.
Someone made the point that Blood Drives would occur with or without
Eagle Projects, and there is a point to be made there. But often
trails would be built, food drives, conservation projects, etc.
would also happen even without Eagle projects.
The key points are in approving an Eagle Project should be IMHO:
1. Does the project benefit the community/school/church?
2. Will the Eagle candidate acquire new skills through planning,
developing, and giving leadership.
Just because the event might have occured anyway, it might be improve
I had a Scout do a blood drive as an Eagle Project several years ago.
The blood bank was very surprised at the tremendous success, much
better than the average blood drive.
The Eagle candidate organized a troop and community education
program promoting the importance and safety of giving blood. He also
organized scouts into committees to recruit donors, parents, church
members, businesses, civic groups, and community members at large.
Scouts earned a special "Count Dracula Award" if there could sign up
a quart of blood in pledges.
When the blood bank people came to the church to begin their blood
drive they were swamped with donors. They had a waiting line all
day long. It was one of the most successful blood drives they had
seen. That Eagle candidate made a real contribution to a live giving
resource for the community. His project helped save lives. What can
be more important.
The extra blood donated because of his efforts may have saved a life.
What if his Eagle Project had been turned down by a group of adults
at the district level. How did that project "not" qualify for Eagle
I think that you cannot reject Eagle Projects wholesale. You must
judge each project on individual merit. Blood drives may or may not
qualify as a worthy Eagle Project, depending upon the individuals
Eagle candidate's level of imagination and creativity. Don't kill a
project before it has a chance to breathe.
Don't prejudge an idea for any Eagle Project. Look at the Scout's
plan, either it will qualify or not based on guidlines stated by the
BSA. Too often, Scouters become the limiting factor for the ability
of Scouts, we should allow them to find their own limits for them-
selves. Our job is to guide and counsel them along the way. The
biggest factor is not the base concept of the Eagle Project, but the
individuals unique approach to making it a worthy endeavor. Don't
ever underestimate these kids, they'll prove you wrong every time.
Good luck to the SCout looking for an Eagle Project in a blood drive.
It is a life giving project that will benefit many people.
Remember to make it "your" project. Use your innate creativity and
resolve to improve upon anything that has been done in the past.
Work up your best plan then take it to the necessary adults for
approval. Listen to them. Rethink. Recreate. Do your best.
If it's approved, great. If it is not accepted at all, then adapt.
Keep your spirit up and try something else. Your Eagle Project is
one of the most important endeavers you will ever have. Make it
YIS, Cliff Golden
Three Fires Council BSA, Illinois
I'm sorry I was so long-winded.
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City