"We're not just Horsing around!"
Scouting operates at its best when families participate in the activities and have fun together. Families are encouraged to assist in making scouting program more successful. Every scout leaders should endeavor to introduce "Parents Volunteering Program" into their system. Let us take more time to talk to the parents of our scouts to know where they can help and how they can come in. Their skills are needed to help our boys to become responsible young men.
Parents are a vital part of scouting, they can help out at fundraising, teaching, monitoring, spending quality time with their child and developing the scouting curriculum. The curriculum of Scouting provides the activities that are fun for kids while it also instills character, citizenship, leadership and fitness in them. Scouting is fun for everyone, not just an opportunity for Scouts to do fun stuff, it’s also an opportunity for parents to learn, busy and grow. Scout parents working together to help raise each other’s kids.
Volunteers have greatly assisted in re-shaping lives of many scouts worldwide. We are aware that in this busy world there are competitions for our children’s time, but choices must be made and the right one will have a positive impact on those kids. The values taught in Scouting are invaluable in assisting parents as they raise their children. Children are bombarded continually with complex and mixed mental drill. Scouting strives to support and assist parents by reinforcing values taught at home. There are very few places a parent can send a youth to have these values taught. Scouting has never left the values on which Scouting was founded.
The success of troop will depend on numbers of its youth members and adult leaders. We need to do our best to make sure they are involved in our activities. Every parent of every Scout becomes an important part of our Scouting program base on their skill, profession and experience. Whether as an active leader, involved committee member, or a supportive parent who encourages their son to be an active Scout and live by the ideals of Scouting, the parent's role is important to the growth and success of both the Troop and the Scout.
Researchers have shown that the more involved a parent becomes in the Scouting program their child has registered in increases the likelihood that the youth will stay in the program. When looking at this from an entry into the Cub Scouting program, a parent who is actively engaged in the meetings will see a noticeable difference in how much their child gets out of the program. I always tell parents in my troop that "Sitting on the sidelines does not count. Get into it up to your elbows and you will see a level of bonding you had never believed possible".
Early childhood development shows that an activity shared between parent and child will create a connection that will not soon be forgotten. Children in their formative years, especially from age 6 - 12 are eager for validation. They want you to see what they are doing, but will thrive even more if their parents are part of what they are doing. The activity becomes more meaningful to them, and they become more invested in the program. They are more likely to stay in the program through the transition to Scouts section as well. There are many opportunities to assist in the day to day operations of the program that still allow a parent to spend time directly involved with their child.
Steps to be taken now....
Good communication with parents is very important. Speak directly to them, not through their boy or girl. Explain in detail what you are doing and how the activity will help their Scouts advance. Parents want to see their kids advance; they just don’t always know when and how to come in.
Make Scouting a great social occasion for both parents and their children. Be sure your events can involve siblings, a family friend and community. Ask parents, family friends and siblings to help with activities. If your troop makes Scouting fun for the whole family, more parents will get involved, which will make a troop grow and thrive.
As we work to improve the program of scouting, input from parents like you is invaluable to us, please join us today by going to the meeting, camp and other activities with your child.