feeder packs (was Intro and help)
Beth Guth (bethguth@ENTER.NET)
Tue, 11 May 1999 09:00:10 -0400
>people keep talking of feeder packs" it has bothered me for a long time.
>Why do people assume that all (or most) of the boys in a certain pack
>should automatically join a specific troop??
I think that we use adminstrative/short-hand language here to facilitate
discussion. Troops have it within their power to determine who their
"feeder pack" will be. Send the pack Den Chiefs, know the webelosII names,
help the webelos earn a requirement, show up and make cobbler, man the
refreshments at the pinewood derby race, be visible, be of service. It is
within the troops power to court and woo any packs boys. Arrogantly
assuming you have a "feeder pack" and need do nothing to maintain the troop
size is wrong.
>From the list I have heard:
Webelos crossover-bridge ceremonies often include 2 or more Troops.
Troop Visit/Arrow of Light Req. discussions tell of adventures
visiting different troops
Parents mention how it is assumed that one brother will join the
troop another brother is in, but sometimes little brother is turned off
after troop visit.
People complain it is so hard to chose among the troops because
they are so different. They have complained, here on the list, that
parents do not take seriously enough the task of shopping for a troop and
then the boy feels like he doesn't fit and quits scouting, when all he
needed was a different troop.
>Even if the pack and troop are chartered by the same
I bet that most here agree with you, so what. The troop and the boy must
be a match. But as District Membership chair, and cubmaster of a border
pack, lets not be crossing into those packs over the line in the enemy
district! (big grin, VBG and wink)
>The Cub Scout program was not designed to "churn out" Boy Scouts....it is
>a seperate and complete program in its own right.
and exactly what is wrong with churning out boy scouts. I can not think of
a more wonderful and positive thing to do for this world. Scores of young
men, legions of leaders living by the scout oath and the scout
law...helping, serving. (...well I just got choked up at the thought)
**Can someone help, heard at a scout sunday, if a boy was in Boy Scouts for
a least 6 months he will identify with the organization and say, "I was a
boy scout." I was told that some survey said a boy in scouts, just 6
months, will have higher morals (a little cloudy on the means of
measurement) than a non-scout. As an aside, Scout Sunday was ta
goose-bumpy, tingly, wonderful church service. Hope to get the sermon to
post here for your plageristic pleasure. This little country church, our
sponsor organization, had 5 troops represented and 4 packs. All mingled
together and all were an active part of the service. Very little adult
involvement in the service other than an adult eagle scout (in uniform) who
did a responsive reading.
>True, all of us diehards want to see every cub
>become a Boy Scout, but we all know that isnt going to happen.
sometimes, when I am having a pessimistic day I think that way. I hate
losing boys. I mean I HATE losing boys. When a boy quits my cub pack I
take it personally and try harder, plan better, communicate better, do
better. As a District leader someone on my committee will call everyone
WebelosII who does not show up on a Boy Scout Charter by summer. I refuse
to acknowledge, I refuse to accept this. I will understand it on an
individual basis, but jI believe that if we tweak the system and do a
better job most cub scouts (and I can live with 80%) can become Boy Scouts.
("retention is a commissioner function not a Membership function, stay
focused on your job, Beth")
> Cub aged kiddos USUALLY join a pack that
>is chartered by their school or church since that is where they have the
Well, it is where WE, as recruiters, can have the most contact. My
district puts out a list of all cub packs in our district at Back to school
night. A parent is free to chose any one. Its still a geographic thing,
who wants to drive 20 minutes to church when there are 3 packs within 10
minutes. ALSO, friends tell friends, mommies tell mommies. If you have a
great program word gets around.
> While there
>are some differences in the way
>various packs organize and run activities...by and large one pack is
>pretty much the same as another.
Sorry to disagree, but I DISAGREE. I mean I really, really disagree.
Having just done a telephone survey of 32 packs asking if, when and how
they are graduating their Webelos II's I can tell you, first hand, that
packs are as different as night and day. They are as different as the men,
women and boys that comprise them. It varies by geography (rural, urban)
and demographics (affluence, education, managerial ability, and most (more)
important how fun-loving and silly the leaders are). I also just received
a new cub scout who abandoned his previous pack, a small, cheerless place
that should be put out of its misery and re-started with new leadership.
Mom thinks my pack is so great when in truth we are just so-so. She
doesn't know great, but 2 years from now, with a stable of trained leaders
and money we will be, what is today just words, and the words will echo
from the hillsides: Who are we? "THE MIGHTY PACK 161" What are we?
District Vice Chair-Membership
Minsi Trails, Eastern Pennsylvania
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City