Re: Camping MB
Robert Morley (Rmorley@STATE.MA.US)
Thu, 25 Jul 1996 09:25:42 -24000
This is requirement #9 from the Camping Merit Badge.
9. Show experience in camping by doing the following: |
a) Camp out a total of at least 20 days and 20 nights.
Sleep each night under the sky or under a tent you
have pitched. (You may use a week of summer camp as
part of the 20 days and 20 nights.)
I have a few concerns with allowing scouts to use non-scouting camping trips
for this requirement.
1. How many are you willing to allow of the non-BSA type. If the scout
camped out with his family for a week, or two will you accept this? Did the
scouts really pitch the tent or is Mom or Dad saying he did so that the scout
may earn the MB.
2. How far back are you willing to go. Are you willing to count the
Father/Son campouts as cub scouts and webelos. The requirement does not
specifically state the that scout need be a scout to complete the
requirements. Can you interpret this to mean that all camping trips in tents
that this scout attend since he was 8 years old are acceptable. We need to
draw the line somewhere.
3. Are you learning the same type of skills by camping in your back yard as
you are, if you are in the woods, away from home.
4. I hate to even mention it and I know I will receive a lot of hassle from
it, but if you allow one parent to OK a few nights camping, then you MUST
accept any parent that says their son did ANY number of nights camping,
without question. You must treat all parents equally.
We have had problems in the past where a parent would see fit to "Alter" the
requirements for their son, and "fib" a little, so that their son could earn
the award as quickly as possible. This does not help the scout, and really
irritates the other scouts as well.
One last point, if I remember correctly, when begining a merit badge, the
scout must get the name and phone number from the scoutmaster, when the SM
signs the blue card. It is also the counselor's responsibility to determine
whether the scout completed the requirements for the award. I am the MB
counselor for Camping, and I don't sign off ANY requirement unless I was
present. If I am not present I ask one of the other ASM to sign it stating
that they were present when the scout completed the requirement. This
removes any question as to whether the scout actually completed the
requirement or not.
An active troop should have no problem completing these requirements within
18 months. I don't see a need to rush it any further. The first 12 months
should be spent concentrating on rank advancement, with MB as a side item.
Yours in Scouting,
Old Colony Council
Eagle Scout '82
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City