Robert Gerhard (ZonieCat@AOL.COM)
Thu, 20 Feb 1997 12:49:01 -0500
In a message dated 97-02-20, Marc Godbout writes:
> Steve brings up a point that has always bothered me. How many scouters
> are in it for themselves first and the boys a distant second? I see it
> more at the district level than at the troop level (don't know about
> council level).
I suspect the further away from working individually with the boys you get,
the more distant the boys become in your thinking.
> Some examples:
> How many camporees have you been to where just as much time is spent
> thanking the adults running the show as on handing out patrol awards?
> District Awards Dinners
> Knots (the ones worn on uniforms, not the ones the boys tie) >>
I, for one, think that recognition of and for adults is appropriate for
several reasons. It does impact the kids in two ways: First, it shows that
Scouting is important enough in our lives for us to recognize and honor those
who work on its behalf. Second, it gives them additional incentives to stay
with the program in adulthood. As a boy I looked forward to the day I would
receive some sort of adult recognition.
You also have to remember that even adults need some encouragement in the
forms of recognition and incentive. Let's face it, everything you do you do
because it satisfies you in some way. Luckily, for some people, just helping
out is satisfying enough. For others, though, they want to earn another
knot. If that's what it takes to get someone to stay and deliver the program
for another year, or to become an adult volunteer in the first place, I'll
use that incentive.
What's helpful here are requirements that include more than just tenure. You
can't just be a CM for a couple years, you've got to be a CM with a pack that
accomplishes certain things to get that knot.
As long as adults are getting awards for things that they've done to enrich
the program and the boys' experience in Scouting, I see nothing wrong with
it. After all, where would we be without the adults who deliver the program?
Incidentally, the only knots I wear - to this point - I earned as a boy. <g>
But the boys always ask how and when they get those knots!
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City