Yep. we are in a pickle aren’t we?
We have very little idea of what our lives will look like this time next year. Coronavirus has shaken us all up and we are all doing our best to hold on.
Scouting will continue to be around, though, if we look for it in the right place.
This is a good time to remind ourselves what Scouting is and what it is not because much of what it is not may be going away for good or at least slipping below the horizon for a while.
Besides it’s so much easier to remember what Scouting is–
Scouting is the development of character in the individual Scout through the application of the Scout oath and law.
Everything else is not Scouting, it’s merely window dressing.
I like window dressing as much as anyone, but I don’t absolutely need it.
All levels of organization above the patrol; the various and sundry programs, meetings, and events; the trappings, gee-jaws and gimcracks – all of these window dressings will be out of hand for most of us for the uncertain future – and we’ll have the opportunity to hone in on what really matters: the development of character in the individual Scout.
How, exactly, will we do this?
I am not exactly sure, but we will.
If I were still a Scoutmaster I’d be asking my youth leaders for their ideas. I’ll bet they have some answers I never thought of. There must be many ways we can serve our communities and focus on what Scouting is even in these challenging times.
We’ll all be surprised at how resilient and flexible Scouting can be when you concentrate on the real power of what it is. Many inspirational examples can be found in the stories from Scouts who were in occupied countries during WWII:
- Check out this post about one of my favorite Scouting books “The Left Handshake“
- Read about Kazimierz Piechowski.
Keep in touch, stay connected, bridge the gaps, we’ll all be fine – let me know what your Scouts come up with and I’ll share it with everyone.
Laurence Foong says
thank you Clark and good to hear from you.
hope you’re keeping well.
btw, how’s your film project going?
Scoutmaster Tom Finan, Troop 500, St. Louis says
I am preparing some activities for scouts (both pack and troop) that they can do at home. We are working with our scout leaders to create a system of online activities that can be approved by leaders.
Some of this will be based upon Google forms, for scouts to fill in information and work for merit badges, and others will be videos created by older scouts for the cub scouts, given that cub scouts can do things approved by parents. our idea is that there are merit badges that they can do while at home.
it is difficult to envision how scouts can help outside the home at this stage for purposes of health and safety. at the same time, they are doing their community a favor by staying at home.
Clarke Green says
I’d stop preparing things for them and put this in the hands of your youth leadership.
Given the chance they will also come up with some good ideas of how to serve the community and observe the restrictions we are all subject to right now.
We do have to think way outside the box, and our youth leaders are bound to be better at it than we are.