Re: Scoutmaster Distress
(no name) ((no email))
Wed, 5 Aug 1998 20:59:41 +0000
It's times like Linda's that supports a good Camp Commissioner!
Every camp should have AT LEAST ONE, or one for every four
campsites, just like "back home". They can be really invaluable!!
Linda Clossen <LClossen@AOL.COM> asked us all:
>Scouts and SA's from the other Troop became distressed with their
>Scoutmaster and one by one started coming to my tent to ask if
>they could transfer to my Troop.
>I said no. They should stay with their own Troop and work it out.
>They said they want to quit.
>Keep my nose clean and to myself or speak with the Scoutmaster and
>try to figure out what is going on?
>What would you do??
First, the Scoutmaster didn't come "prepared for camp". Other than
the day in which he was ill, he didn't give his Assistant
Scoutmasters nor his Senior Patrol Leader any guidance on how HE
saw things being run. (Indicator, Linda: this guy probably hasn't
been trained or was trained a LONG time back; am I right?)
Second, you shouldn't offered to work with his Troop for more than
the one day. In a camp situation, any absenses should be
coordinated with the Camp staff and with THAT TROOP's adult
leadership. In this way, situations such as yours can be best
resolved by the Troop's own internal adult leadership, supplemented
if needed by the camp staff (most notably by the Camp Commissioner)
and saved some of your skin and body parts.
Third, your Camp Commissioner should sit on a log with both you and
he and get some things "straight": he asked for YOUR help, and
therefore should be grateful for YOUR Troop's assistance. Every
Troop runs differently, and this is the overriding reasoning why
each Troop should run under it's OWN adult AND YOUTH leadership.
While it was very noble of you and your Troop to take on this
additional responsibility as a "good turn" during your week at
camp, your Troop's programming suffered a little by the constant
"overwatch" and it shouldn't have. The Scoutmaster didn't do his
job of "being prepared" for the week of Summer camp. If he didn't
have any more confidence in the abilities of his Assistants while
he was gone (or ill), those should not have been the people to work
with him and the youth of the Troop during that week of camp.
Emergencies happen, and work schedules sometimes make it impossible
to be there fore the entire week of camp; but if you commit to
summer camp, the committment should be for the *entire week of
camp* where possible. If it's not possible, one of the Assistant
Scoutmasters should be denoted as the "alternate Scoutmaster" for
the week of summer camp, and it should be someone that indeed could
be there for the entire week.
One summer, because of a military committment, I could only be in
camp for the latter half of the week. Camp started on Sunday, I
swapped out with my First Assistant Scoutmaster on Wednesday
evening. We spent that afternoon talking about progress, about the
camp program and I was introduced to the Camp Commissioner
overseeing our site that week. It made the transition great and
although I missed the waterpistol/balloon fight on Tuesday, and the
volleyball tournament on Monday and Wednesday afternoon, I was
there for the rest of the week's activities. I felt bad for not
being there for the first half...I wanted to be in CAMP, not "in
the field". But these things happen and I wasn't worried; this is
the guy that someday (two years later) is going to take the Troop
over as Scoutmaster.
It's important, gang, that the adults that go with you are not just
"compatible" with you as a person, but also you as a "supervisor of
youth" and advisor to the youth leader. My own experience showed
me that the more I talked with and "figured out" with my fellow
Scoutmasters, the more I was able to not only have confidence in
them when I wasn't able to attend a Troop meeting or a campout, but
also in being able to "stand up and support them".
This comes from being trained, and from coaching your Assistant
Scoutmasters and working together as a team.
Your Troop must be doing some great things for them to want to come
over and join your Troop; but you did a better thing for them by
telling them that they need to instead make their Troop better.
Unfortunately, your message was wasted on the wrong individual, and
that's where a good Camp Commissioner would have been mighty handy!
(Personally....I think that the guy felt bad about having to leave
and decided to take it out on his assistants...and you were in the
range of fire and got some too!)
Sorry you had a good/bad week of camp, Linda!!
(c) 1998 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 firstname.lastname@example.org
privately at email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org
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