Troop 132 is a youth-led troop!
“Training boy leaders to run their troop is the Scoutmaster’s most important job.”
“Train scouts to do a job, then let them do it.”
“Never do anything a boy can do.”
Robert S.S. Balden-Bowell, Founder of Boy Scouts
Troop 132 follows the Boy Scouts of America vision of having Boy Scouts be youth-led. It is different than how Cub Scouting works, and it is different from the way a lot of youth activities are run, where the adults decide what to do and the youth do it. Boy Scouting is different, and it is sometimes difficult for adults to realize that we have a different role and a different goal. In Cub Scouting and in many other programs, our goal is to have fun activities and generate achievements. Our role is to make sure that the activities happen, that the achievements take place.
Boy Scouting is different. In Boy Scouting, the role of the boys is to have fun activities and generate achievements. The role of the adults is not the destination, but the journey. That is, our responsibility as adults is to promote the “process” of Scouting. What is important for us is:
- Not the food on the campout, but that the boys cooked it.
- Not a sharp-looking flag ceremony, but that the boys put it together.
- Not who would make the best patrol leader, but that the boys elect one.
- Not that Johnny learns first aid, but that Billy teaches him.
- Not that we cover everything on the meeting agenda, but that the senior patrol leader is in charge.
Our goal, as adults, is not to get things done, but to create a safe and healthy environment with the training and resources that the Scouts need, and then let them do it. It can be a very messy business, and painful to watch. Meetings where the boy leaders are in charge can be very chaotic. And it can be very tempting for adults to jump in and sort things out, because that is what adults do. But we have to remember that that is the process of Scouting. That is how they learn—even from disorganization and failure. We just have to remember that our business as adults is not the same as the business of the boys. It is up to them to get things done. It is up to us to make sure they have what they need, but (within the bounds of health and safety) not what they do with it.
The above information was gathered from the Boy Scouts of America website.