Re: Former Boy Scouts who don't volunteer
settummanque, or blackeagle (blkeagle@DYNASTY.NET)
Fri, 18 Jul 1997 18:54:06 -0500
Jan Mussler asked:
>Do other Packs have fathers who sign up their sons for Scouts, who have
>Scouting background, but don't volunteer much or not at all in the den or
>Pack? Why might this happen? I would think these would be your best
>recruits for activities. Sometimes its the Mom who does the volunteering.
Lots of fathers, like myself, prefer not to be involved in the "operations"
end of the Pack or Den solely out of personal reasons. We don't want to
"push" our sons (perhaps as some of us were; I didn't have the benefit of
that "pushing", for good or bad) or be seen as "only involved to advance our
own sons", as illustrated in the question about the "Scoutmasters' sons"
earlier this week.
Other fathers, remembering how busy Scouting *really is*, smartly/blindly
passes the application to someone else that seems to "need the experience".
And there are those that get into it, and wants to "run things as they
remember it", which could be years or decades since they were either Cub
Scouts or Cub Scouting leaders. While we welcome their volunteering, we end
up a lot of times swearing under our breaths "Why did we do this?"
Still other fathers are really too busy to do all but support the Pack
Committee or to root for their son(s).
There is NO GUARANTEE that previous Scouting experience will give you a
quality Scouting volunteer. While many understand the need for the program
(they wouldn't have their sons there otherwise), many more understand that
Scouting leadership isn't for everyone. We should give them the chance to
return to the program on their own terms and within their own timing periods.
Remember also, that those "former Scouts and Explorers" make GREAT
Committeemembers and SME prospects. They understand that the program
doesn't run itself and it takes more than a few hands to make it work. They
may not want "to be a leader of anything" but sitting on a committee or
handing over (or helping to raise) money is just down their
A question I get privately is "Your son's Cub Scout Pack must really love
you; you've got all of that experience and stuff...I'm sure that you're too
busy serving in as a leader, right?" I have to disappoint them. My
children don't live with me, and it's a real logistical nightmare to get
them across the state to visit with us for short periods during the year.
My oldest son's Cub Scout Pack is a large Pack, but they don't have a lot of
leadership. His WEBELOS Den leader has an assistant only on paper, for
example. So when he's here, it's more of a vacation from Scouting than
anything else, even though I do get Drew to try and do "something relating
to Scouts". I try not to emphasize my Scouting background or anything with
him (hard to do around *this place*!!), but I have tried to get him to go
with me for example, to Eagle Courts of Honor with me. Sometimes he wants
to go; sometimes he doesn't. That's fine....he has other interests other
than Scouting, which I'm equally proud of him for having.
There's a lot of fathers (and mothers, those having gone through Girl
Scouting as a youth or earlier in their adult lives) that have the same
problems: they want to see their children do well, but they don't want to be
in their way as they find their way toward Eagle or Gold. I want to be a
part of my son's advancement, but at the same time, I want him to be able to
tell others that his father "had nothing to do with it except to encourage
and motivate me toward Eagle"....if that's what *he* wants to do and acheive.
(c) 1997 Mike Walton ("no such thing as strong coffee,...") (502) 827-9201
(settummanque, the blackeagle) http://dynasty.net/users/blkeagle
241 Fairview Dr., Henderson, KY 42420-4339 email@example.com
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