In our community, we have a handful of Boy Scout Troops and a handful of Cub Scout Packs. The membership in any single pack or troop fluctuates year to year. Across the board, numbers stay fairly even, but there are spikes in individual units which often cause some concern.
Some years, a troop will get a bumper crop of new scouts because there are a few younger brothers in Webelos that are definitely going to that troop and they wind up pulling more new scouts along with them. Other years, the same thing will happen to a different troop.
This year, it seems like competition between troops is at a very high level. Our troop is in the situation of having a few younger brothers moving up so we're not too concerned about bringing in enough scouts. But, that doesn't mean we aren't pulling, pushing, and prodding Webelos to continue on.
The scouts in our troop have scheduled events so they could invite Webelos along. And, they've done this to help the Webelos fulfill their Arrow of Light requirements, rather than actively recruiting them. I think that makes a big difference in the amount of fun and pressure that exists. We had a handful of Webelos join us at the district Camporee. We had a very fun Scoutorama last weekend. And, next month, they decided to invite some Webelos to go skiing.
Last night, the troop had a table at an event specifically devoted to recruiting Webelos. One of the local Packs invites all the troops to have a table in a local church. Then, they invite all the Webelos from every pack to come and meet each troop. It's a terrific event where Webelos get to see each troop. The troops have little activities trying to impress the Webelos. Many of the troops have developed traditional activities - one has rubber band guns, one has a board game, and we have a wheel of fortune. I had a great time because I just sat and watched all night. The scouts talked to Webelos and parents and never got a question they needed me to help with.
I would highly recommend
that you consider organizing such an event in your community - it will give you good press and really help with the Webelos transition. Getting Webelos to go on to Boy Scouts is the goal, not so much which troop they join.
Posted: 12:32 11-09-2007 253 Previous Post Next Post
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