The Scouting Solution

scout[1]In a previous post I waxed on about scouting organizations that are out there as alternatives to the Boy Scouts of America (BSA). We have been a quandary as to how to provide the valuable experience that scouting provides for our children. It’s been almost two years since my last post in the subject and it’s come back around in the house now that our children have reached the age where most of the skills can be managed.

We have decided on a dual path approach for our daughter. We are starting out with her in Girl Scouts of the USA (GSUSA) since the program seems to have a path that will benefit her in areas that she currently struggles. GSUSA provides a social network that is outside of her school or neighborhood. She is in need of this due to some of the challenges she is currently going through and that cannot be addressed at school or with the kids that she has grown up with. I’ll touch back on the second part of the approach in a minute…

Our son, who is now 7-1/2, has just started with the Baden-Powell Service Association (B-PSA). There is not currently a B-PSA group in our area so he and I have signed up as Lone Scouts until such time as a group forms locally. I’m starting him off as a Timberwolf, even though he is young, to give him a bit of extra time to work on the requirements. The Otter path is just not defined enough at this time.

baden_powell-224x300[1]Why the┬áBaden-Powell Service Association (B-PSA)? I’ve been watching them closely for the past several years. They had been holding at 5-10 groups around the country but have taken off over the past 12-18 months. I don’t know what has caused this but I speculate that it is partially the move toward traditional scouting and the issues that the BSA has been going through of late. When I first signed up on the scoutfinder tool on their website I was the first in my area to do so. Now there are a dozen families in the area listed. I’ve started the process of reaching out to them in an attempt to get enough interest to form a troop.

While I really didn’t want to get roped in to being a scout leader it looks like there is no avoiding it in the near future. I’m not content to sit around and wait for someone else to take the initiative. ┬áMy past experience as a leader in SpiralScouts was that I bore the brunt of the workload and drive so it will be important that a team of leaders get pulled together to drive a group.

… back to my daughter. I fully expect that as we get B-PSA rolling in our area she will start to participate in the activities since GSUSA does not offer the same level of traditional scouting. It’s just a matter of waiting to see what happens with her.