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Scoutmaster Musings

Yet Another Eagle Leadership Service Project today. It was fixing up the playground at a local church. We've had a glut of projects this summer - actually 7 of them. The projects were at four different churches, a nature area, and two city parks. Lots of landscaping, painting, and building of outdoor furniture.

Today's project had a relatively small group of scouts compared to the size of the troop. It still went well, but I'm afraid Eagle Project Burn-out has set in. I've been warning the Life Scouts of this since July and the last one even gave out ice cream coupons at troop meetings to get guys to volunteer - smart scout!

Five and a half years ago, the troop had a great group of about 16 scouts join. Many of them reached Life quickly, catching up to the scouts in the two years ahead. But then they went into idle mode, feeling they had "lots of time" to get to Eagle. In 10th grade, a couple of them got in gear and pulled the other seven along in their wake and put the pressure on the guys a year older. So, now we have 18 Life scouts, 13 of which are Juniors or Seniors, all anxious to get Eagle. Makes lots of service hour opportunities and a good impact on the community, but difficult to convince scouts to set aside yet another day for volunteer labor.

We still have 3 more projects being planned before winter sets in. They are good projects, but will be extra challenging to complete with the short time left and tired out scouts.

I will be using "the Summer of '09" as an example of planning your project well ahead of time, for a long time. Acquiring volunteers is a crucial part of the project plan that can't be taken for granted.

Scout On

Posted: 22:00 09-27-2009 445
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