Thursday, 30 April 2009

Lost Eagle Scout Hiker

Scout Skills Help Lost Hiker Survive
By DAVID TIRRELL-WYSOCKI,


Scott Mason, of Halifax, Mass., headed up the popular mountain for a long day hike on Saturday, but decided to take a shortcut down after spraining his ankle. He chose a route he had discussed with the staff at the Appalachian Mountain Club lodge where he began his hike. "They had information that it was clear at the time," he said in a telephone interview Wednesday. But that emergency route led him into unexpected trouble: rising water and deep snow caused by unseasonably warm weather. "When I got down there, the rivers were much more rapid than should have been," he said. He decided instead to cross earlier than he had planned, putting him in an area of no trails. Wearing plastic bags inside his boots to keep his feet dry, he began trying to find a way out. Mason said even though he was stranded, he wasn't lost because he had hiked the area before and recognized the landmarks. He sank several times into mountain runoff that was hidden beneath waist-deep snow. "The runoff was about 2 1/2 feet deep and probably running 30 mph," he said. "The guides confirmed I could have gotten sucked in if I had fallen all the way in, and I would have been gone." Saturday and Sunday nights, Mason crawled beneath snow-covered pine trees and hunkered down in a bivvy sack, a waterproof sleeping bag shell. To keep warm, he started fires with a hand sanitzer gel. "You can put it right on what you are burning, and even on the snow you can make a fire," he said. "I was able to make a fire just because I ripped down some big evergreen branches." By Sunday afternoon, his snow-covered route down still blocked by raging runoff, Mason decided he had to go back up the mountain. On Monday, he tried signaling a helicopter, waving his hiking poles and reflective bivvy sack. But the crew was focused below his level, more concerned that he might have tried to take a trail across a river and been swept away. "It was a little disappointing," he said. He found a large crevice in a rock that night that was partially protected from the wind, built a higher windscreen with rocks and slept until well after daylight Tuesday, when he resumed his slow trek toward the summit to reach the weather observatory. "I was going to hike to the observatory and kind of knock on their door and try to get some hot cocoa and a ride down," he said. That's when he and a search team spotted each other. The rescuers give him a ride down the 6,288-foot mountain Tuesday morning into the waiting arms of his parents, sister and aunt. Mason thanked rescuers who endured the treacherous conditions to look for him. "Anyone can go through the ice into an underground stream," he said. "They were risking their lives to try to save me."

Yours in Scouting Service
Mark W
Junior Assistant Scoutmaster
Troop 1616
Great Alaska COuncil
Eagle Scout OA Brotherhood Member
NSJ '05 WSJ '07 Philmont AA '08

Distingushed Eagle Scout Award

Distinguished Eagle Scout Award Recipient Urges Juniors to Mentor Others

Story Number: NNS090429-15
Release Date: 4/29/2009 8:41:00 PM
By Mass Communication Specialist 2nd Class (SW) Thomas J. Miller GREAT LAKES (NNS) --


The commander of Navy Region Midwest was awarded the Distinguished Eagle Scout Award by the Boy Scouts of America April 28.

The award was presented to Rear Adm. Douglas T. Biesel by his former Scoutmaster Thom Helmacy of Coudersbort, Pa., during the 2009 Northeastern Illinois Council Eagle Scout Recognition Dinner at Naval Station Great Lakes.

The award is granted to Eagle Scouts who, after 25 years, have distinguished themselves in their life work and who have shared their talents with their communities on a voluntary basis.

"I challenge you to think about integrity as you are faced with challenges; do not compromise your integrity because it's rare if at all possible to get it back," Biesel told the new Eagle Scouts. "Without integrity all other attributes are nothing."

Biesel, who earned his Eagle Scout in 1972 in has distinguished himself throughout his career as a naval officer.

"We are so pleased and honored to learn of the selection of Admiral Biesel by our National Boy Scouts of America organization for the Distinguished Eagle Scout Award," said John H. Mosby, chief executive officer, Northeast Illinois Council, Boy Scouts of America.

"In studying the history of the award since its inception in 1969, only the highest quality of individuals have been selected for this distinct and rare award, and Admiral Biesel most certainly fits that mold."

The National Eagle Scout Association Committee selects the award recipients. The members of the selection committee are all recipients of the Distinguished Eagle Scout Award.

"Admiral Biesel's leadership by example and personal ethical and moral values reflects the same standards we apply in scouting, and so it is a natural choice for him to have been selected for this honor," Mosby said.

"The relationship between the Navy and the Boy Scouts has been long-standing, especially here locally. Admiral Biesel has been a key part in continuing that strong relationship since arriving here earlier this year."

In addressing this year's Eagle Scouts, Biesel challenged them to lead by example.

"Lead by example; mentor others, and congratulations to all the new Eagle Scouts. God bless you, your families and the Navy and the finest country on the earth," Biesel said. "I am really, really honored. Thank you for this distinguished Eagle Scout award. It has been a great pleasure serving this great nation as a naval officer."

The Distinguished Eagle Scout Award was implemented in 1969 and since that time approximately 1,793 nominations have been approved. Only the local council of the Eagle Scout's principal residence may nominate. Nominations may not be made for posthumous awards.

"I am really, really honored. Thank you for this distinguished Eagle Scout award," Biesel said. "It has been a great pleasure serving this great nation as a naval officer."

Distinguished Eagle Scouts include former President Gerald R. Ford, former Chiefs of Naval Operations Adm. Jay L. Johnson, Adm. Carlisle Trost and Adm. Elmo Zumwalt, Jr.; astronauts and naval aviators Neil Armstrong and Capt. James Lovell and Secretaries of Defense Robert Gates and Donald Rumsfeld.

Biesel enlisted in the Navy in 1975 and attended the Naval Academy Preparatory School (NAPS) in Newport, R.I. Following NAPS, he graduated with honors from the U.S. Naval Academy in May 1980 with a bachelor of science degree in mechanical engineering and was designated a naval submarine warfare officer in 1983.

Following nuclear power training, he completed sea assignments aboard USS Lapon (SSN 661), USS Michigan (SSBN 727-Blue), USS Annapolis (SSN 760) and a command tour aboard USS Philadelphia (SSN 690). He has also served on numerous staffs and as commander of Naval Submarine Base Bangor, Wash. Prior to assuming command at Navy Region Midwest, he served on the staff of the chief of naval operations in programming and budgeting.

For more news from Commander, Navy Region Midwest/Naval Station Great Lakes, visit www.navy.mil/local/midwest/.
Yours in Scouting Service
Mark W
Junior Assistant Scoutmaster
Troop 1616
Great Alaska COuncil
Eagle Scout OA Brotherhood Member
NSJ '05 WSJ '07 Philmont AA '08

Tuesday, 28 April 2009

Meeting Review

April 27, 2009 Meeting
After Meeting Review
I really am now going to start writing meeting reviews on a weekly basis because I believe that me writing this information down helps do the following:
  1. Helps me see what I need to work on. Specifically what skills do I need to develop and what skills do I need to teach others in order to do their job successfully.
  2. Helps outside units see how things are run in various units. Let me stress this again, we as a unit do not do everything perfectly or exactly how the scouting method intended but we are always striving to create a program in which we follow the method as closely as possible
  3. Helps other leaders within the unit see a perspective on how the meeting went and what we could change.
So lets talk about yesterday's meeting. First off I really did not sit in on the meeting like normal because I was helping conduct a BOR and sat through Scoutmaster and Assistant Scoutmaster Specific Leader Training. These two items tied up most of the night for me. So lets start at the very beginning, first off we need to crack down and start at exactly 7 o'clock pm instead of waiting around a few minutes for more people to show up. If we start on time consistently more and more scouts will get the message that it is important to show up on time. I did not show up as early as I should have because I got into the meeting room at about 7:05 luckily we had not started the meeting so I did not interrupt anything. By the way I informed the Scoutmaster who gave me permission to show up late like I did, as a adult leader that is what I am expected to do, if a youth leader is going to show up late he should contact the SPL. Finally if it is a youth member then that scout should contact his patrol leader. Okay after that announcements went good and were fairly clear, the SPL as along as he writes down the announcements before hand he will get the information out that he needs to get out. After announcements I went into a training session for the course I stated above and did not directly witness the meal planning. In my opinion the group did fairly well with completing the task but the amount of time it took to complete the task in my personal opinion probably was not up to the standard it should have been, it took the group over 40 minutes to plan the menu. This task should not take more than 20 minutes. This 20 minute timeline works much better because it allows the group to get more stuff done, have more fun, and be able to complete something else other than a boring required logistics item which no one in the Troop likes to do. After that the Troop went outside for a game but I was unable to get out for the game because I had to help conduct a BOR. The BOR occurred for a Scout that was going for his Second Class. He of course passed his BOR and during this time I learned several very interesting things about the kid and about what sort of activities the boy likes. I have always found that the BOR experience is more about getting to know the person on a personal level and connect with that scout in the short amount of time allotted.

That is all I have for this meeting. My overall impression for this Troop Meeting is that it went really good once we got the meeting going. the Beginning of the meeting was a little slow but that was because the SPL did not totally prepare or get help with preparing a Troop meeting. I am making a personal goal to make writing or typing out a meeting agenda 2nd nature to the boy who is currently in the SPL.

Yours in Scouting Service
Mark W
Junior Assistant Scoutmaster
Troop 1616
Great Alaska COuncil
Eagle Scout OA Brotherhood Member
NSJ '05 WSJ '07 Philmont AA '08

Sunday, 26 April 2009

WSJ 2011 Staff Registration Information

When, Who, Cost & Refund for Staff:

What is a World Jamboree?
A great outdoor adventure conducted by a host member of the World Organization of the Scout Movement. Thousands of youth and leaders from around the world camp together and participate in many exciting activities. World Scout Jamborees are held once every four years.

Where and when will it be held?
The 22nd World Scout Jamboree will be held in Sweden. The dates of the actual jamboree are July 27-August 7, 2011. The dates for each individual participating will vary slightly depending on travel.

Who can attend?
Staff members in the age category of 18 – 25 years old must be registered members of the Boy Scouts of America and have been born between July 27, 1985 and July 24, 1993.

Staff members in the age category of over 26 years old must be registered members of the Boy Scouts of America and have been born on or before July 26, 1985.

How much will it cost?
Cost of the basic package plan for staff in the age category 18 – 25 years old $1,750 (plus a non-refundable application fee of $10). The basic package includes all meals, accident and sickness insurance and regional and national office administrative/program support. The cost does not include airfare.

Cost of the basic package plan for staff in the age category of over 26 years old is $1,950 (plus a non-refundable application fee of $10). The basic package includes all meals, accident and sickness insurance and regional and national office administrative/program support. The cost does not include airfare.

The basic package also does not cover the cost of ticketing due to early or late departure from the jamboree site due to medical emergencies, family emergencies, and/or problems based on our code of conduct.

Refund Policy
If you should have to cancel your participation in the jamboree, there are monies that cannot be refunded, including a $100 cancellation fee and all payments made on your behalf to the jamboree host country. Once such fees have been deducted, you may be eligible for a refund of any remaining monies you paid.

Yours in Scouting Service
Mark W
Junior Assistant Scoutmaster
Troop 1616
Great Alaska COuncil
Eagle Scout OA Brotherhood Member
NSJ '05 WSJ '07 Philmont AA '08

WSJ 2011 Adult Registration Information

When, Who, Cost & Refund for Adult Participants

What is a World Jamboree?
A great outdoor adventure conducted by a host member of the World Organization of the Scout Movement. Thousands of youth and leaders from around the world camp together and participate in many exciting activities. World Scout Jamborees are held once every four years. Where and when will it be held? The 22nd World Scout Jamboree will be held in Sweden. The dates of the actual jamboree are July 27-August 7, 2011. The dates for each individual participating will vary slightly depending on travel.

Who can attend?

These are the positions for adult leaders in the BSA contingent:

Scoutmaster
Be at least 21 years of age by July 24, 2011.
Serve as a Scoutmaster for at least one year during the three-year period prior to July 1, 2011.
Complete basic Scoutmaster and Assistant Leadership Specific Training.
Complete Wood Badge for the 21st Century.
Be able to serve as a role model of physical fitness.
File a Jamboree Personal Health and Medical Record with the jamboree committee.
Complete Youth Protection Training within two years of your arrival date at the 2011 World Scout Jamboree site.
Be approved by the local council and appropriate region.
Scouter’s Key is a desirable qualification although not required.

First Assistant Scoutmaster
Same qualifications as Scoutmaster.

Second Assistant Scoutmaster
Be at least 21 years of age by July 24, 2011.
Complete the appropriate leader-specific training.
Serve actively in an adult troop leadership position for at least one year during the three-year period prior to July 1, 2011.
Be able to serve as a role model of physical fitness.
File a Jamboree Personal Health and Medical Record with the jamboree committee.
Complete Youth Protection Training within two years of your arrival date at the 2011 World Scout Jamboree site.
Be approved by the local council and appropriate region.

Third Assistant Scoutmaster
Be at least 18 years of age (but not yet 21) by July 24, 2011.
Serve actively in a unit leadership position.
Complete the appropriate leader-specific training.
Be able to serve as a role model of physical fitness.
File a Jamboree Personal Health and Medical Record with the jamboree committee.
Complete Youth Protection Training within two years of your arrival date at the 2011 World Scout Jamboree site.
Be approved by the local council and appropriate region.


How much will it cost?
Cost of the basic package plan is $3,525 (plus a non-refundable application fee of $10). The basic package includes travel (from the assigned gateway city), all meals, unit and patrol equipment, accident and sickness insurance, regional and national office administrative/program support, and buses for ground transportation to/from the jamboree site. Cost does not include travel to or from the gateway city.

The basic package does not cover the cost of ticketing due to early or late departure from the jamboree site due to medical emergencies, family emergencies, and/or problems based on our code of conduct.

Refund Policy
If you should have to cancel your participation in the jamboree, there are monies that cannot be refunded, including a $100 cancellation fee, all payments made on your behalf to the jamboree host country, airlines (actual ticket and/or deposits), and troop/patrol equipment. Once such fees have been deducted, you may be eligible for a refund of any remaining monies you paid.

Yours in Scouting Service
Mark W
Junior Assistant Scoutmaster
Troop 1616
Great Alaska COuncil
Eagle Scout OA Brotherhood Member
NSJ '05 WSJ '07 Philmont AA '08


Italian Scouts to the Rescue

here is a story about Scouts from the Federation of Italian Scouting which shows how Italian Scouts responded to the huge earthquake that occurred recently there. The story made the International News link for the World Organization of the Scouting Movement website. So here is the story:

Italian Scouts commit to the rescue efforts after the terrible earthquake

On the night of 6 April an earthquake has shaken a central region of Italy called Abruzzo. It was a real catastrophe: more than 250 people were killed, 1000 injured and about 25000 are now without a home. AGESCI and CNGEI (the two NSAs in Italy part of FIS - Federazione Italiana dello Scautismo) after the official request of the Italian Civil Protection are already on the spot to offer help and support to the people affected by the shock.

The response of Italian Scouts to the catastrophe that hit Abruzzo has been well-timed and generous. About 200 volunteers from CNGEI and AGESCI have already arrived on the spot of the earthquake and they are supporting the Civil Protection in the rescue. In particular, at the moment they are engaged in setting up camps for the evacuees and supporting those people affected emotionally.

The Scouts come from all around Italy and most of them have travelled all through the night to offer support as soon as possible because the situation is still grave.

One city, L’Aquila, and some villages in Abruzzo have been almost completely destroyed and the need for help will surely continue in the coming months. For this reason AGESCI and CNGEI are preparing shifts in order to guarantee a constant presence of Scouts in the affected area: more than 300 Scouts are ready to go.

In the past, with similar events that unfortunately happen quite often in Italy, the commitment of Scouts was always recognized as very important and also in these tragic circumstances, they are doing their best to be near and support the huge number of affected people.

WOSM-European Region has already sent a message to Federazione Italiana dello Scautismo to demonstrate its solidarity with our brother and sister Scouts and the whole Italian nation. We know that many other associations have sent similar messages.

Yours in Scouting Service
Mark W
Junior Assistant Scoutmaster
Troop 1616
Great Alaska COuncil
Eagle Scout OA Brotherhood Member
NSJ '05 WSJ '07 Philmont AA '08

Friday, 24 April 2009

WSJ 2011 Update One

BSA National Council has just recently released some new information regarding the 2011 World Scout Jamboree which is going to be held in Sweden. The recently just put a registration system up for the Jamboree. The registration system is similar to the online system used for the 2010 National Jamboree. The Fee for youth staff members in $1,750 but that does not include airfare. Youth staff are between the ages of 18 and 25. Adult staff are 26 years old and older. The adult staff fee which also does not include airfare is 1,950. Also the staff fee does not include a touring package. This is standard procedure for WSJ staff. The participant fee is going to be 3,525 it may change slightly but that price is definitely cheaper than the participant fee for the 2007 WSJ. This participant fee applies to adult leaders who attend as Troop leaders and to all youth going as part of a scouting unit.

Another thing is that the BSA will be releasing more information about this event during its May 2009 National ANnual Meeting. Also sometime in May the BSA should have a WSJ 2011 jamboree website up and running.

Until more information is known that is all I have for the first update. Hope to see you in Sweden.

I am also looking for Scouts and Scouters from around the World to share stories regarding there previous jamboree experience. This will be used to promote what a World Scout Jamboree is really about.

Yours in Scouting Service
Mark W
Junior Assistant Scoutmaster
Troop 1616
Great Alaska COuncil
Eagle Scout OA Brotherhood Member
NSJ '05 WSJ '07 Philmont AA '08

NSJ 2010 Trivia

Here is another pie e of trivia information that is related to the 2010 National Scout Jamboree:
Jamboree Trivia
Each night at the 2010 National Scout Jamboree, 11 semi trucks will roll into Fort A.P. Hill to restock the many commissaries that supply the Jamboree. What Napoleon said about an army travelling on its stomach apparently applies to the Boy Scouts of America as well!

Yours in Scouting Service
Mark W
Junior Assistant Scoutmaster
Troop 1616
Great Alaska COuncil
Eagle Scout OA Brotherhood Member
NSJ '05 WSJ '07 Philmont AA '08

Wednesday, 22 April 2009

NSJ 2010 Bulletin

April-May 2009 Bulletin

Council Checklist: Where Do You Stand?

Should Be Done:

  • Start monthly committee meetings
  • Complete selection of troop leaders (include in monthly committee meetings)
  • Transportation and tour arrangements confirmed
  • District jamboree promotion rallies (jamboree troop leaders promote and conduct)

In Progress:

  • Promote jamboree at all council events
  • Promote jamboree at all district events including Scout Roundtable
  • Promote jamboree at troop meetings
  • Individual calls to Scouts that indicate an interest in attending
  • Monthly committee meetings
  • Develop promotion for summer camp
  • Design council shoulder insignia
  • Follow up on Scouts not adhering to council’s fee schedule

Jamboree Staff Opportunities

There are still several staff opportunities available for our 100th Anniversary jamboree. Our Retail Group has the best record so far with 88.1 percent recruited. However, there are opportunities in almost all of our groups. There are 208 service groups recruiting within the major jamboree groups: Administrative Group, Enterprise Risk Management Group, Food Service Group, Media & Corporate Alliances Group, Retail Group, and the Program & Regional Support Group. During the staff application process online, the entire list of group jobs is listed. All of the major groups still have staffing opportunities.

Some of the opportunities are: security and parking, retail food service, Good Turn for America, sub camp staff, the action centers, and the Order of the Arrow events. For a complete list, check the online list at the staff registration site. We encourage all troop leaders and registered staff members to assist us in identifying other Scouters who may have not applied for this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.

Council Shoulder Insignia

It is time to design and order your council jamboree shoulder insignia. These can be ordered directly from the Supply Division on its new Web site. Here are the instructions:

BSAcustompatches.com Instructions

The following information can be used as a reference tool when obtaining quotes on the bsacustompatches.com Web site. Also included are instructions detailing the process of creating orders from quotes received via www.bsacustompatches.com. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact the specified individuals below:

  • Questions about bsacustompatches.com quotes, deliveries, etc.: AB Emblem Service Team, 888-438-4071, bsateam@abemblem.com
  • Questions about a bsacustompatches.com order, order status, etc: AB Emblem Service Team, 888-438-4071, bsateam@abemblem.com
  • Requests for a custom emblem or patch not listed on bsacustompatches.com: Mike Clifton, 800-323-0732 (ext. 461), mclifton@netbsa.org
  • Changes to your established account or to set up a new account: Mike Clifton, 800-323-0732 (ext. 461), mclifton@netbsa.org
  • Questions about billing or payments for bsacustompatches.com orders: Mike Clifton, 800-323-0732 (ext. 461), mclifton@netbsa.org
What’s Going to be New at the Jamboree?

There has been a lot of discussion about what will be new at the 2010 National Scout Jamboree, our 100th Anniversary jamboree. The jamboree gets bigger and better each time, and this one will be no exception.

For the first time, there will be swimming. Two new pools have been purchased for this jamboree. This is in addition to the four pools that will be in use for the scuba programs. Speaking of getting wet, the Order of the Arrow’s Mysterium Compass will give participants a chance to cool off at the end of their trek through the Compass.

Also, for the first time there will be a sporting clays event using world-class shotguns at the new Camp Thunder.

The staff coordinating the Merit Badge Midway tells us there is a huge effort being made to find a way for all 121 merit badges to be represented. Experts in all merit badge fields are being recruited to assist Scouts at the midway.

A new, enhanced visitor plan will ensure a better jamboree experience for guests. Booths with information and refreshments will be available near the visitor parking lot. There will be an optional visitor packet with a map, a patch, and other items.

Food! There will be more refreshments stands with drinks, water, and lots of ice cream. There will also be a value added card that can be used like a debit card at trading posts and concession stands throughout the jamboree.

The opening and closing arena shows of the jamboree will be unforgettable. The closing will be all about the Boy Scouts of America’s 100th Anniversary. This show is in development and will be produced by a professional entertainment company. You won’t want to miss it! In addition, there will be a show the night before the Scouts arrive to thank staff members for their great work in developing and staffing the jamboree.

The 2010 National Scout Jamboree will have lots of new things, but also the wonderful traditions of the past. Don’t miss this one. Sign up today!

Yours in Scouting Service
Mark W
Junior Assistant Scoutmaster
Troop 1616
Great Alaska COuncil
Eagle Scout OA Brotherhood Member
NSJ '05 WSJ '07 Philmont AA '08

Tuesday, 21 April 2009

19 YO Eagle Scout Speech

video
Yours in Scouting Service
Mark W
Junior Assistant Scoutmaster
Troop 1616
Great Alaska COuncil
Eagle Scout OA Brotherhood Member
NSJ '05 WSJ '07 Philmont AA '08

Interamerican Rgion WOSM News




Scouts of Peru in the time of the Planet

Brought together about 500 people, a group of scouts from the Peruvian city of Lima held the "March of the Light", a day that I seek to draw attention from neighbors and businesses about the importance of saving energy for the good of the planet and fair use of natural resources, thus supporting the actions of "Blackout World" for the environment.

Cubs, Scouts, hikers and Parent Group Lima 114, made a working ant, touching doors, delivering leaflets and inviting institutions such as St. Pio X Parish, Fire Bomb, Serenazgo, police and nearby businesses, Scouts drew attention its 10,000 residents and more than 300 businesses nearby to extinguish all lights and be part of the global initiative.

Also, the scouts took their camp lamp, flags and banners specially prepared, plus get a band musicians so that together with the hundreds of neighbors and friends begin the "Walk of Light" and the party Peru effective action that generates a good awareness of conservation and energy saving.

This unique project was a success, as well as in Cuzco, Peru Scouts worked with the planet.

Yours in Scouting Service
Mark W
Junior Assistant Scoutmaster
Troop 1616
Great Alaska COuncil
Eagle Scout OA Brotherhood Member
NSJ '05 WSJ '07 Philmont AA '08

SPL SOP Update Two

Okay I know that I said that I would have had this document about how a SPL should do his job completed but unfortunately due to life and how everything is going I have not had the time to finish the document. Okay I admit I have gotten involved in other activities and put it on the back burner but I am still most definitely thinking about finishing it.

Also another reason why I have fallen behind schedule is because I have hit a stumbling block. This stumbling block is caused because I am not sure how to go about writing a general planning procedure for campouts or special day events that are hosted by the Troop. This part is really hard to write because I have to account for so many different variables. So I am asking for your input about what I should do. Specifically I am looking for advice in the following areas:
  • Which jobs are assigned to the SPL when planning a campout
  • Which jobs are assigned to adults when planning a campout
  • Who should have to put together this plan the SPL or the PLC group.
Those are my three questions. I am also looking for input in regards to just general ideas and methods for the SPL planning and leading campouts and other Troop special events.

Thanks in advance for your help and all you do for scouting.

Yours in Scouting Service
Mark W
Junior Assistant Scoutmaster
Troop 1616
Great Alaska COuncil
Eagle Scout OA Brotherhood Member
NSJ '05 WSJ '07 Philmont AA '08

What Scouting is all about

Normally I try to steer clear of Scout articles that come from news sources or other public sources that are highly political in nature because of the fact that even though a Scout is suppose to be patriotic I do not believe that scouts and politics should mix together. Whenever these two mix both the government and the Scouts end up causing each other large amounts of grief.

Lets now get back to the subject. A article in the Patriot Post which is a conservative Journal caught my attention through another blog that I follow as being very interesting. This article discusses why America needs the Boy Scouts more than ever in today's society if we want to ensure that a lot of boys do not waste away their lives by becoming hoodlums.

So here is the link the the story. Hopefully you will enjoy it. Click here.

Yours in Scouting Service
Mark W
Junior Assistant Scoutmaster
Troop 1616
Great Alaska COuncil
Eagle Scout OA Brotherhood Member
NSJ '05 WSJ '07 Philmont AA '08

Explorer Scout Goes above and beyond the Call of Duty

For those of you who do not know what a Explorer Scout is it is a nontraditional career exploration program under a group of programs that the BSA refers to as Learning for Life Programs. A Explorer Scout is attached to a Post that is sponsored by some community organization in pretty much every career field imaginable. The most common posts are in fire departments or police departments but their are many other businesses that also sponsor posts.

This story is a news story that comes from Valley Springs California and is about a 16 year old explorer scout who while on a ride along went above and beyond his normal call of duty by rescuing the deputy he was riding with from almost certain death.

If you want to read the full story click here.

Yours in Scouting Service
Mark W
Junior Assistant Scoutmaster
Troop 1616
Great Alaska COuncil
Eagle Scout OA Brotherhood Member
NSJ '05 WSJ '07 Philmont AA '08

Friday, 17 April 2009

Earth Hour Video

Here is a video from the earth hour project that scouts helped to conduct. Scouts from at least 44 different countries participated in this event.

video

Earth Hour Report


Scouts officially present Earth Hour results on behalf of world youth

Scouts around the world switched off for Earth Hour on the 28th of March 2009 in a worldwide demonstration of a commitment to take action for the environment. Scouts in at least 44 countries participated in Earth Hour, engaging with their family, friends, classmates and communities to share in this world initiative in partnership with WWF. Scout youth members officially presented the results of Earth Hour to Yvo de Boer, Executive Secretary of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change at an official UN meeting in Bonn, Germany. Jonas Rieger (11 years old) and Marie-Christine Bleil (11 years old) along with the other Scouts from the Phoenix Scout Group in Bonn gave the following speech when presenting the Earth Hour results to Yvo de Boer, on the opening day of UN Climate Change talks: "If the world keeps on polluting, it will get very hot in summer and there will be more and more intense storms around the year. If the world keeps on polluting as it is, there will be very little food and water left for us in the future. If greenhouse gases continue to rise, we will lose our future. Earth Hour is a first step. We have done what we can, by telling our parents and our friends to switch off the lights during Earth Hour. We need to be aware about climate change and our energy consumption every time we flip a switch. We are working on saving our future. But now it is up to politicians to do something. We need a global climate deal to be able to work together on this. We voted for Earth, for our future, and for yours- Will you do the same?"

The presentation was accompanied by a speech from Kim Carstensen of WWF, and Rod Abson of the World Scout Bureau who both talked about the importance of the climate change discussions and the tackling this problem with action. Scouts were seen as leaders in their community and important representatives of the young people who need to be prepared to respond to the issues of climate change. Earth Hour was potentially the largest public demonstration on climate change with hundreds of millions of people in over 4,000 cities and towns in 88 countries participating.

We have received confirmation that Scouts from at least 44 countries participated in Earth Hour, a great example of Scouting's worldwide co-operation for the environment: Algeria, Australia, Belgium, Bolivia, Canada, Costa Rica, Denmark, Ecuador, Egypt, El Salvador, France, Germany, Gibraltar, Iceland, India, Indonesia, Italy, Ireland, Japan, Lithuania, Madagascar, Malaysia, Maldives, Malta, Mexico, Mozambique, New Zealand, Palestinian Authority, Philippines, Serbia, Seychelles, Singapore, South Africa, Swaziland, Sweden, Switzerland, Taiwan, The Netherlands, Tunisia, Turkey, United Kingdom, United States of America, Venezuela, and Zimbabwe.

If you have participated in Earth Hour and your country is not already listed above, please let Rod Abson of the World Scout Bureau know via email: rodabson@scout.org

Scout Stuff Sale

There is a upcoming sale worth mentioning. It is a sale that will let you mix and match classic uniform parts while supplies still last, so if you need classic uniform items, get them before they run out. This sale will be on May 1. Here is a copy of the ad:
Yours in Scouting Service
Mark W
Junior Assistant Scoutmaster
Troop 1616
Great Alaska COuncil
Eagle Scout OA Brotherhood Member
NSJ '05 WSJ '07 Philmont AA '08

Wednesday, 15 April 2009

Arrowmen in Action

Arrowmen in Action: Blazing a Path

Arrowmen In Action Most Arrowmen love to spend time hiking trails through the backcountry. But for Charlie Morgan, nothing is more fun than spending a day working on those trails. Charlie—an Eagle Scout and Brotherhood member of Occoneeche Lodge in North Carolina—devotes a good portion of his time to trail maintenance with the Friends of the Mountain to Sea Trail. The trail spans from the Blue Ridge Parkway, which cuts through the Appalachian Mountains in North Carolina, to the Atlantic Ocean on the other side of the state. Eventually, the trail will run all the way through the state and backpackers will be able to hike the entire thing, non-stop.

For Charlie, a typical day on the trail involves trail maintenance, like checking bridges and re-routing parts of the path that have been eaten away by erosion. He spends at least four or five hours a week keeping his part of the trail open and available for hikers. "It's very fun," says Charlie.

Charlie MorganEven though the trail plays a big part in his life now, Charlie discovered it by accident. "My Mom got an invitation to a Friends of the Mountain to Sea Trail workday for one Saturday afternoon," Charlie explained. "Since I didn't have anything else to do, I decided to go with her." He took to the work immediately - so much so that the organization's president, fellow Arrowman Jeff Brewer, offered Charlie his own segment of the trail to maintain near Jordan Lake.

Working on the trail gives Charlie the satisfaction of giving back. "It's a good service for the community," he says. "You also learn a lot about the environment and all kinds of things about the outdoors." He's also been able to watch the organization grow. When Charlie started, the first workday he attended was only made up for five or six participants. Now, he says, sometimes hundreds of people show up to help build and maintain new sections of the trail. That's something Charlie enjoys, "I've watched it grow and grow."

And this nineteen year old isn't done building trails yet. "Working on my section of the trail motivates me to build more trail," he says. For each new stretch of trail Charlie builds, he'll use the Power of One. How will you use it?

Yours in Scouting Service
Mark W
Junior Assistant Scoutmaster
Troop 1616
Great Alaska COuncil
Eagle Scout OA Brotherhood Member
NSJ '05 WSJ '07 Philmont AA '08

Tuesday, 14 April 2009

WSJ 2007 Trivia

For those of you who went the the 2007 World Scout Jamboree in the United Kingdom lets see if you can answer the following trivia questions from the November 2007 Scouting Magazine Website. So here they are
.  Scouting began in the UK in 1907. What was the second country to adopt the Scouting program? (Hint: It wasn’t the United States.)

2.  What is a kudu horn?

3.  Where did the word jamboree come from?

4.  In number of participants, what were the top five Scout associations attending the jamboree?

5.  How much did a .33-liter can of Coca-Cola (not quite 12 ounces) cost from an on-site jamboree vending machines?

6.  Only six countries have no Scouting programs. Can you name them?

7.  The next world jamboree takes place in 2011. Where will it be?

8.  What gigantic event took place at Hylands Park only 10 days after the jamboree ended?

9.  What item in the jamboree souvenir catalog was the most expensive?

10.  What are the two official languages of World Scouting?

ANSWERS

1.  Chile became the second country to adopt Scouting in 1909, one year before the United States.

2.  A kudu horn is a musical instrument made from the twisted pronged horn of the African kudu antelope. Baden-Powell blew it at the beginning of the 1907 Brownsea Island encampment, and the same horn was blown by U.K. Chief Scout Peter Duncan 100 years later at the island’s August 1 sunrise ceremony. The kudu horn is also often used to signal the start of a Wood Badge training course or activity.

3.  The word jamboree is thought to be derived from Swahili for hello, jambo. Speaking at the first world jamboree in 1920, Baden-Powell said, “People give different meanings for this word, but from this year on, jamboree will take a specific meaning. It will be associated to the largest gathering of youth that ever took place.”

4.  The United Kingdom (6,104), Boy Scouts of America (3,125), Italy (2,166), Japan (1,483), and Portugal (1,425).

5.  A .33-liter can of Coca-Cola (11.15 ounces) from a jamboree vending machine cost 1 British pound or $2.04.

6.  The six countries without Scouting are: Andorra, Myanmar (Burma), Cuba, People’s Republic of China, Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (North Korea), and the People’s Democratic Republic of Laos.

7.  Sweden will host the 22nd World Scout Jamboree in 2011.

8.  The annual two-day V-Festival rock concert, sponsored by Richard Branson’s Virgin Group, was staged at the same Hylands Park arena used during the world jamboree. This year’s headline acts -- Foo Fighters, Damien Rice, Iggy Pop and the Stooges, and The Fray -- entertained more than 160,000 concertgoers.

9.  Struck in 22 carat gold-proof quality, the Scouting Centenary 50-pence coin features the centennial dates, fleur-de-lis, and “Be Prepared” Scout motto. A limited edition of 1,250 coins from the Royal Mint was available at 345 pounds each (about $700).

10.  The two official languages of World Scouting, used in arena show programs and in the official jamboree newspaper, are English and French.

Yours in Scouting Service
Mark W
Junior Assistant Scoutmaster
Troop 1616
Great Alaska COuncil
Eagle Scout OA Brotherhood Member
NSJ '05 WSJ '07 Philmont AA '08

Monday, 13 April 2009

NSJ 2010 Fun Facts

Here is a list of the BSA National Jamborees with the Year, the Location, and the number of people who attended the jamboree.

1937 Washington, DC 27,238
1950 Valley Forge, PA 47,163
1953 Irvine Ranch, CA 45,401
1957 Valley Forge, PA. 52,580
1960 Colorado Springs, CO (golden jubilee) 56,377
1964 Valley Forge, PA 50,960
1969 Farragut State Park, ID 34,251
1973 Farragut State Park, ID & Moraine State Park, PA. 73,610
1977 Moraine State Park, PA. 28,601
1981 Fort A.P. Hill, VA. 29,765
1985 Fort A.P. Hill, VA** (diamond jubilee) 32,615
1989 Fort A.P. Hill, VA 32,717
1993 Fort A.P. Hill, VA 34,449
1997 Fort A.P. Hill, VA 36,015
2001 Fort A.P. Hill, VA 40,002
2005 Fort A.P. Hill, VA 43,307
Total Jamboree Attendance through the Years 665,051

Yours in Scouting Service
Mark W
Junior Assistant Scoutmaster
Troop 1616
Great Alaska COuncil
Eagle Scout OA Brotherhood Member
NSJ '05 WSJ '07 Philmont AA '08

Saturday, 11 April 2009

Kids and Fitness

In today's world where being fit is compared to how strong, ripped, and muscular you are, how are kids who are not star athletes suppose to compare. It can be really hard for those kids who are not athletic or really strong to even get a fair chance when it comes to physical activities or physical education classes, just because so many PE teachers and coaches will not spend time with the kids that need the most attention. The group I am talking about is the out of shape kids who either dislike sports or are not able to participate in them because the sport is too competitive. This to me personally is too bad, so where are the kids who are out of shape and still scouts suppose to turn to. I think the solution is to involve the scout leaders more often in keeping themselves and their youth members fit. I most definitely admit that I am not the best example when it comes to physical activity but I am going to try my best anyway.

I think that the standard definition of the word fitness or fit needs to be looked at again. First lets look at society's definition which is as follows:
To be really strong, muscular, or otherwise built for athletic activities.
Now lets look at the dictionary's definition of the word"
The state or condition of being physically sound and healthy as the result of vigirous physical activity and proper nutrtion.
A state of general mental and physical well-being
Obviously the standard definition is far from the truth of what being fit actually means. So lets educate our boys on what true fitness is about.

After that I think we need to make a commitment to ourselves to be in good enough shape to enjoy all of the lovely outdoor activities that we want to participate in. Then finally after making a commitment to ourselves we need to help our youth find ways to stay fit that do not require us to break down the kid and making feel useless.

Yours in Scouting Service
Mark W
Junior Assistant Scoutmaster
Troop 1616
Great Alaska COuncil
Eagle Scout OA Brotherhood Member
NSJ '05 WSJ '07 Philmont AA '08

SPL SOP Update One

A couple of days ago I talked about publishing a Senior Patrol Leader Standard Operating procedure. I have made tons of progress on this guide but unfortunately since tomorrow is my birthday and I have church stuff in the morning I probably will not finish this guide over the weekend. I was hoping to finish it but since I am running out of time to finish it probably will not get done but that is okay since i really do not have a hard deadline for this project yet.

Yours in Scouting Service
Mark W
Junior Assistant Scoutmaster
Troop 1616
Great Alaska COuncil
Eagle Scout OA Brotherhood Member
NSJ '05 WSJ '07 Philmont AA '08

Wednesday, 8 April 2009

Panamerican Jamboree 2009

The 2009 Pan American Jamboree will take place from December 26, 2009 to January 3 2010. It will be held in the city of Toluca, capital of Mexico.

Here is a brief description of the theme and what the Jamboree is going to be about:
The name of this 13 Pan Jamboree is "The Adventure of the Fifth Element", the setting is a place where the weather gods have been made to teach this man the care of ecological balance. Participants formed tribes regardless of the origin of each and will be directed by the gods. During 8 days living the essence of each element to learn the virtues of each, passing tests and challenges that will give you the final preparation for making the Fifth Element reborn. The birth marked the fifth element of the pact that the man does to nature and the man himself in an atmosphere of brotherhood and tolerance. The Fifth Element reborn in the last minutes of 2009 marked the beginning of a new era in the life of men, full of brotherhood and commitment upon completion of the mission, the gods of the elements return to their original shape and will continue to monitor Man steps to enforce the commitment sealed. Mexico is the perfect place where you can be part of this great adventure. Come and know the journey to the fifth element. You will have four guards who guides you go by introducing a material in a newsletter. These four guidelines help guardians to live an unforgettable experience at this event.

Here is information if you would like to participate or if you know of another scout who would like to participate:

We will be coordinating a national contingent to the 13th Panamerican Scout Jamboree in December 2009, in Toluca, capital city of the state of Mexico. The event is a wonderful opportunity to travel and learn about Mexico in an atmosphere of exploration and adventure and strengthen the Scout brotherhood. The motto of this great event is “Explore our territory, discover your spirit.” More than 8,000 Scouts from around the American continent are expected to attend the nine-day event. Bari Saunders, member of the International Committee, has agreed to serve as the BSA’s contingent leader. Bari and Esther Scoggins, of the BSA International Department, will be contacting those Scouters that have indicated an interest in attending this event. Do you have someone from your council interested in attending? Please contact Esther Scoggins at esther.scoggins@scouting.org.


Yours in Scouting Service
Mark W
Junior Assistant Scoutmaster
Troop 1616
Great Alaska COuncil
Eagle Scout OA Brotherhood Member
NSJ '05 WSJ '07 Philmont AA '08

Scouts of the WOrld Interamerican Seminar

This Seminar is planned to give a detailed presentation of the chracteristics, objectives and forms of operation of the Scouts of the World Award that is designed for use in the Venturing Section of the BSA> The BSA has currently not adopted the Scouts of the World Recognition program. Also in a fair amount of countries venturing is known as Rovering. The agenda for this event will include:
  • Theory of the Award
  • Examples of Successful Practices
  • Ideas that have proven effective in promoting the Award
  • Ideas that have proven effective in developing the Award.
  • Specific contributions for implementation at the National Level
This Seminar will be given by Andres Morales who is the Unit Manager for the Adolescents and Young Adults Education Research and Development of the World Scout Bureau, Central Office, Geneva, Switzerland.

Yours in Scouting Service
Mark W
Junior Assistant Scoutmaster
Troop 1616
Great Alaska COuncil
Eagle Scout OA Brotherhood Member
NSJ '05 WSJ '07 Philmont AA '08

Tuesday, 7 April 2009

Interamerican Youth Forum

The 3rd Interamerican Region Youth Forum will be hosted by the Scout and Guide Association of Costa Rica. This event will be held from July 6 to 12 2009. The purpose of this event is to present share and learn from sustainable experiences of youth participation in order to enchace and consolidate youth networks and forums at the local and regional levels. People who are invited include the representatives from NSO's or National Scout Organizations who are participating in the Youth Network have appointed correspondents and this meeting is also open to young people aged 18 to 25 who have shown a interest in youth participation matters, have a broad and general understanding of youth issues relating to participation and decision making, or are familiar with institutional decision making. Obviously this includes a very wide range of people.

This forum will be directed by Daniel Corsen Jr the Youth Network Coordinator and his Deputy Youth Network Coordinators.

Yours in Scouting Service
Mark W
Junior Assistant Scoutmaster
Troop 1616
Great Alaska COuncil
Eagle Scout OA Brotherhood Member
NSJ '05 WSJ '07 Philmont AA '08

Cellphones and Scouting

As this world gets more and more technologically inclined we a scouts and scout leaders need to truthfully consider what the purpose of cellphones should be in Scouting. Yes I believe that cell phone use should be allowed in scouting. It is just a matter of teaching the the youth and to appropriately and responsibly use their cell phone. The scouts are just going to bring them anyways so what is the point of banning them. Also they can be very useful. Lets first work on some cellphone etiquette:
  • Cellphones should not be used including the texting feature when a person is speaking to the group. It does not matter whether it is a youth or adult.
  • Put the cellphone on at least vibrate but preferably silent when involved in a Scout meeting.
  • Just because you want to talk or text someone on your phone does not mean that the rest of the world wants to experience or hear the conversation.
Cell Phone User Code
  • I will take full responsibility and not blame anyone else if my phone is damaged, loss, or stolen. The only exception is if a phone is stolen by another scout then appropriate consequences should be used.
  • I will use my cell phone only when appropriate.
  • I will only use my cell phone when I have to. When I have to means it is for communicating information to parents, communicating information to adult leaders or communicating information to other youth members.
  • I will keep my conversation on my phone down. I realize that the whole world does not want to hear my conversation.
  • I will not let my phone become a distraction to myself or others.
  • I realize that if I do not take appropriate percautions on scout outings there is a very high likelihood that the phone will become damaged.
  • I agree that I will not be a show off with my phone because show offs are really just insecure people that have to push others around to feel good.
This code is probably not complete but the point is that cell phones are going to become a part of scouting whether or not we want them to or not. We as leaders must teach our youth how to use the phone just like we teach a new tenderfoot to setup a tent and the rest of his campsite.

Yours in Scouting Service
Mark W
Junior Assistant Scoutmaster
Troop 1616
Great Alaska COuncil
Eagle Scout OA Brotherhood Member
NSJ '05 WSJ '07 Philmont AA '08

Planning SOP

I have finally had it with reminding the Senior Patrol Leader that he is expected to plan and execute the meetings. If he is not there then he needs someone else to run the meeting. I am not trying to be negative or derogatory towards my SPL but I really need to do something else in order to ensure he succeeds and the Troop succeeds. The Troop does fine but it would be much better if I had a strong youth leadership team. So my solution is to write a SPL SOP. For those of you who do not know what a SOP is a SOP is a standard operating procedure. Basically I am over the long weekend going to write a SOP that describes the functions of the SPL and what is expected for outings and on a weekly basis. I will probably post this document in multiple parts for others to view once I finish it.

Again let me remind you that this may not be 100% in line with BSA policy but it is what works for our Troop that follows BSA guidelines as closely as possible. Another reminder this solution is just a possible solution for this problem. Hopefully some of you will be able to take the information and use it in your own Troop.

Also if anybody has any suggestions for making scouts perform the planning and logistics aspect of their position it would be greatly appreciated.

Yours in Scouting Service
Mark W
Junior Assistant Scoutmaster
Troop 1616
Great Alaska COuncil
Eagle Scout OA Brotherhood Member
NSJ '05 WSJ '07 Philmont AA '08

Also if anyone

Saturday, 4 April 2009

Scout Quotes

Unfortunately, I'm not a person that's always capable of living up to the Boy Scout philosophy.
Stanley Crouch

We must depend upon the Boy Scout Movement to produce the MEN of the future.
Daniel Carter Beard

See things from the boy's point of view.
Robert Baden-Powell

To get a hold on boys you must be their friend.
Robert Baden-Powell

We never fail when we try to do our duty, we always fail when we neglect to do it.
Robert Baden-Powell

Be Prepared... the meaning of the motto is that a scout must prepare himself by previous thinking out and practicing how to act on any accident or emergency so that he is never taken by surprise.
Robert Baden-Powell

The uniform makes for brotherhood, since when universally adopted it covers up all differences of class and country.
Robert Baden-Powell

A boy carries out suggestions more wholeheartedly when he understands their aim.
Robert Baden-Powell
Yours in Scouting Service
Mark W
Junior Assistant Scoutmaster
Troop 1616
Great Alaska COuncil
Eagle Scout OA Brotherhood Member
NSJ '05 WSJ '07 Philmont AA '08

Wednesday, 1 April 2009

Arrowmen in Action

Arrowmen in Action: Stepping Up To Help When No One Else Did

Arrowmen In Action The twists and turns that come with driving up a mountain road can often be unnerving. So can coming upon an injured motorcyclist on your way to a Scouting event. That’s what happened to 14-year-old Taylor Wood—a Life Scout and Brotherhood member of Siwinis Lodge in Torrance, California—while riding with his Scoutmaster and his Scoutmaster’s son. "We were driving up the mountain and there were about three cars in front of us," recalled Taylor. "Then we started to see motorcycle parts scattered in the road." The motorcycle parts belonged to a motorcyclist in need of help lying on the side of the road with his friend. "None of the other people ahead of us stopped to help so we stopped."

Even though it appeared the injured motorcyclist only had minor cuts and scrapes, Taylor rushed out of the car with his first aid kit. "I always have my first aid kit." Taylor said. "Some people keep them in the back of their car or in their packs, but I keep mine with me." He immediately began to clean the motorcyclist’s open wounds and made sure to stabilize him to avoid making any internal injuries worse. When medical personnel arrived, Taylor and the other passengers in his vehicle slowed traffic down on either side of the accident.

Finally, nearly 20 minutes after Taylor and the others came upon the accident, a Sheriff’s Department helicopter landed nearby to evacuate the crash victim to the hospital. Emergency personnel never revealed the motorcyclist’s name to Taylor or his Scoutmaster, making his heroic deed a random act of good citizenship. But for Taylor, deeds like that are nearly habits. He’s been involved with three other accidents similar to this one. "It’s just a normal instinct," he said.

Taylor used the Power of One to help save a life. How will you use it?

Yours in Scouting Service
Mark W
Junior Assistant Scoutmaster
Troop 1616
Great Alaska COuncil
Eagle Scout OA Brotherhood Member
NSJ '05 WSJ '07 Philmont AA '08

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