Re: Scoutings Image
golden cliff (c60clg1@CORN.CSO.NIU.EDU)
Thu, 16 Nov 1995 18:46:09 -0600
The subject of improving the image of Scouting, is like many problems, it
begins at the local level.
As a troop we have worked to improve the image of Scouting, but not as an
end in itself. Conducting the best program possible is our aim. If we do
that correctly we also improve our image as a direct result.
First we must improve the boys image of themselves. Build within them a
sense pride of who they are and the organization of which they belong.
This is accomplished through meaningful youth leadership and a strong unit
program. Look for their strengths, and build upon them.
Improve the image to parents by sharing the program through parental
involvement on the committee and activities. Use photos, slide programs,
and stories at Court of Honors. Publish a first rate newsletter that
presents Scouting as a well planned exciting opportunity for their sons.
Make them feel a part of the family of Scouting.
Improve the image to your sponsor by having a large attractive display
somewhere highly visible that tells the story of Scouting and your
troop. Involve your unit in service to your sponsor. Work to make them
proud of their sponsorship of Scouting.
Reach out to the community through events that showcase Scouting, and
polish these activities to make them present the best possible image. We
participate in the council's Scout-O-Rama, food booths at festivals,
concession stands, pancake breakfasts, spaghetti dinners. These become
not only fundraisers, but also community events where people have contact
with Scouting. We march in our local Memorial Day Parade. We never say
no to a service opportunity. We conduct a number of service projects each
year for our sponsor (a church) as well as the community at large. (20
projects in 1995)
Tell the Scouting story to your community by sharing your success with the
local media. Write an article about your summer activities complete with
photos and captions. We received nearly a full page from one paper with
two photos and a half page story from another newspaper. Don't allow a
good thing to remain a secret, share your troop's story with the
community. Signs and radio spots about fundraisers also raise the
awareness of Scouting. Make a display for National Scout Week that
communicates a positive image. We have had Scouts also do radio spots for
National Scout Week. I have in the past done a radio call-in show on
Scouting at a local station.
Nationally, the best thing for our image would be a major motion picture
that depicts Scouting in a positive way to young people. Film has a major
impact on fashion and establishes what is "cool" to many young viewers.
"Mr Scoutmaster" and "Follow Me Boys" were good films for that in the
past. More recently, Indiana Jones was depicted as a Life Scout in one of
those popular films, but more is needed. That would help our image a great
Maybe someone could convince Steven Speilberg to work on a project. Many
feel good coming of age films could be portrayed in a Scouting setting.
Whatever approach is taken to improve the image of the Scouting program,
it has to begin at the grass roots. An idea travels from one person to
another. An image follows that same route.
YIS, Cliff Golden DeKalb, Illinois
Scoutmaster Troop 33 email@example.com
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City