Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Passing the test

I am going to have to be honest. The last several months have really tested my resolve and commitment as an Adult Scout volunteer. I have often heard that “Scouting would be fun if it were not for the adults”. We kind of expect conflict and issues with kids since that is part of the growing up process and failures are really an important part of maturing. When conflict and frustrations come from adults it can be heart breaking.

I am the FOS chair so of course all Council financial complaints come my way. I have always felt we should give our time and our finances to things we believe. Is it such a big deal to give even $20 bucks?

I am an ASM for the 2013 National Scout Jamboree and have been shocked to have so few Scoutmasters and unit leaders return phone calls or e-mails. Our signups are low and I am convinced it is mostly due to Unit leaders not passing along the information to their Scouts. Really is it all that difficult to return a phone call or reply to an e-mail?

I am an ASM of a wonderful Scout Troop and have been frustrated by adult to adult conflicts, people driven by egos and personal agendas. Can’t we all just get along and have fun?

There have been times when I have started to question why I spend so much of my time, my money and my heart on this program.

Sunday I attended the Troop Court of Honor and once again had a chance to be reminded of the why. I saw the Scouts dressed in full uniform enjoying each other as friends. I saw proud parents beam as their sons celebrated rank advancements. In the row in front of me, saw a grandma shed tears throughout her grandson’s Eagle speech. Best of all, I heard two Eagle Scouts tell what the program has come to mean to them as they have journeyed to Eagle. It was a wow moment for sure.

Scouting is not a hobby or just something fun to do in the outdoors. For me, it is a mission that God has given me. It is my chance to show His love through the Oath, Law and Motto. It is my chance to maybe in the slightest possible way have a positive influence on a youth and perhaps even his parent.

To my core, I know there is a kid that will be different and better as a result of this program. Even if the investment only pays off for one person and even if that payoff only comes many years from now it will all be worth it.

Yes we may never see these results in person and we may never know the difference we made. That does not matter if you know in your heart why you are here. “On my honor I will do my best”

So—Bring it on! I am not going anywhere as long as there is any Scout out there that in even the smallest way may benefit from my mission. I know why I am here.

Do you?

Monday, February 6, 2012

Another weekend of Philmont training

I love running these! 
This weekend we met and walked the stairs again at the Chase building downtown. The goal for me this week was to walk the 38 stories of stairs four times. It is amazing to me how challenging stair walking is in comparison to other workouts. I am happy to say that my overall fitness and ability to do this has improved greatly from when we walked the first time a few months ago. I was able to complete the four round trips and felt pretty good the entire time.

Most of the Scouts are doing well with this too and there are a few that struggle each time. It seems most of the non-sports kids are not doing any exercise in between our meetings. The weather outside, conflicts with homework and motivation when not at a structured session with buddies are all challenges they are working to overcome. February is typically the coldest month of the year here in OKC and my hope is that as spring arrives in March we can get outside together more and add some weeknight walks when the time changes.

Showing treks on a Philmont map
The stair sessions have been followed by instruction time back at the Scout room. The boys have prioritized the activities they want to do at Philmont and used this as a filter to list the top five treks they plan to submit for in March when the official selection process begins. They have been lucky. With having been to Philmont several times and with a son that has worked there as a ranger, our Scoutmaster seems know every inch of the property and every program. This is really helping the Scouts make an informed decision about what they want to do. The Scoutmaster has made a real point to let them determine the choice and make the trek Scout run.

Our next training is going to be a full day with the Scouts introducing them to the gear they will be using.

I am looking forward to it.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

2013 National Scout Jamboree

I am excited to have been selected as one of the Assistant Scoutmasters for our 2013 National Scout Jamboree contingents. Now we just have to recruit a bunch of Scouts to join us for this great once every four year event. This is the first for the Summit and that makes it even more exciting!

The national and the Last Frontier Council Jamboree committees have worked to keep the costs at the lowest possible price point and as a result this year it is half the price of 2010!

What do you think is most exciting about the 2013 National Scout Jamboree?

Are you going?