Scouts-L Mail Archive for September of 1998: Re: Wow! Cost of Scouting (was: Compensation)
Re: Wow! Cost of Scouting (was: Compensation)
Sat, 26 Sep 1998 17:11:13 -0400
I suppose all this really depends on the level of involvement of the
new scout and when he was getting involved in the program...
If a scout is not going to be participating often in the program, and
it can be tough to say especially in the beginning, then it doesn't
make much sense to go out and buy a lot of expensive equipment
that will not get used... and heck, it is possibly to rent quality
equpment for short term usage rather than pay full price if it might
only be used once or twice. I think the brunt of the heavy costs
can be gradually met as a scout matures, that is, IF he is starting
in the program at an early age.
I think aprox $500 dollars is a fair price to pay for fairly good
equipment with some room to spare. Consider this: if you get
off buying a cheap pack for a boy who takes it on a rugged outdoor
adventure, he will be the one who pays the price... perhaps it will
sour his whole experience, but at the very least it will be a pack
that may need replacing thus be a total waste of money. You get
what you pay for...
Now a young scout just coming into a program would probably not
be well suited to some of the demands of high adventure activity
and not need all of this gear... For example, on some troop 'campouts'
a duffel back or gym bag was mostly enough.
For an older boy entering the program expecting to jump into the
high adventure aspect of things, the cost seems about right to me and
depending on the level of activity perhaps even conservative.
In troops I have been a part of in the past fund raisers played a major
role in paying or at least subsidizing many of the costs, but never all.
At least one troop even bought some loaner items for boys, or allowed
boys to use part of their fundraising contributions to pay for individual
Perhaps another suggestion would be for troops to look into
offering bargains for their scouts by looking around for discounts when
placing large orders for troop equipment.
Just a few thoughts...
From: John Conley[SMTP:ITI@FRONTIERNET.NET]
Sent: Thursday, September 24, 1998 2:45 PM
To: Multiple recipients of list SCOUTS-L
Subject: Re: Wow! Cost of Scouting (was: Compensation)
Storms, Randy wrote:
> I was actually doing a little research on this topic this week --
> troop, these are the basic costs for a boy's first year: (Note --
> items are optional, all costs are approximate.)
> Registration 7.00
> Annual Dues 26.00
> Boy's Life 8.00
> Scout Handbook 7.00
> Full Uniform 100.00
> Summer Camp 150.00
> Basic Camping Gear 500.00
> Event Fees (Food, Gas) 150.00
> 1st year total: $948.00
This seems mighty steep to me, especially the last two items. $500
should get you a lot more than basic camping gear. I certainly have
more than $500 in camping gear (how did I live without Gore-Tex?),
I would hardly consider my equipment basic, and I didn't have it
all when I got started.
I'll bet I could get a new camper started with $200, and probably a
less if necessary. I've seen a lot of new Scouts show up
with dad's old sleeping bag. Granted, I wouldn't want them using it
in our climate in February, but we're talking about beginners.
I'm certain that if I waved a $948 price tag at my new parents, a
of boys would have missed out on Scouting.
Also, several of those costs could be spread out over the year. Why
make that first year budget look worse than it already is by showing
them as a lump?
Arrowhead District Commissioner
Finger Lakes Council (NY)
*Better to build boys than mend men*