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Bloomsburg, PA 17815
Phone (570) 784-2700
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A Wonderful Ending Requires a Great Beginning

When that 11-year-old stands at the threshold of our troop meeting, what is that wonderful ending we desire? We want the boy to hike the long trail to Eagle. We help the boy become a man who lives a life devoted to the Scout Law and Oath.

That great beginning needs to start with a warm, friendly welcome. We must be prepared to be sure that our first-time visitor is included in the pre-meeting activities. We had better be sure that after he joins, he earns the Scout rank very quickly. We must be prepared to recognize that rank achievement with due ceremony.

We must put him in a patrol where he will be supported and mentored. Some units use a new Scout patrol. If we do this, we need to make sure resources are available in terms of older boys and assistant Scoutmasters that will support these new boys. We must have a program in place that will lead him to First Class Scout in 12 to 18 months. Other troops assign new Scouts to existing patrols. Again, the resources to insure a good outcome need to be in place. His patrol must get him ready for his first campout and help him during that campout to make sure he has a positive experience.

We need to have a troop program that is filled with adventure that will keep him in Scouting until he ages out. We must have plans in place to go to summer camp. It is well known that a first-year exciting summer camp experience will keep him in Scouting longer. We must make sure we have a program in place that educates his parents about the Scouting program so that they will be supportive of his Scouting adventure.

If we are prepared in this way, we will achieve the wonderful ending that we desire. Now, isn’t that what we’re all about?

(Reprinted from January-February 2018 Advancement News)

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