Tracking of Community Service

Dear Unit Leaders:

September is about to begin!  Before we know it, the days will be a bit crisper, the leaves will begin to turn and we will be in the thick of Fall Scout Recruiting.  As we begin a new Scouting Program Year, we want to send you a brief note about the Reporting of all the Community Service that your Scouts are performing.

As stated in in the Advancement letter sent in June from Tom Burkhardt and Kerry Ketchum, we are doing our best to improve Council to unit support and working hard to bring you a variety of tracking tools.

This is the second letter in this Council initiative, Online Service Hours reporting:

As we put together exceptional programming an adventures for the youth in our units, it is important to remember our obligation to “Do A Good Turn Daily.”  Not just words, community service is a vital part of our program and the cornerstone of our vision, to “prepare every eligible youth in America to become a responsible, participating citizen and leader who is guided by the Scout Oath and Law.”

In an effort to ensure that all Scouts and Units are performing community service, a tracking tool is now part of your “dashboard” on the myscouting.org website.  Use of this tool is a mandatory part of the Journey to Excellence score that grades the performance of units, districts and the council.

The beauty and value of the Service hours reporting tool to you as a unit leader is:

  • The system will help you take care of reporting service hours to the council office.
  • Using the system will create permanent accurate records that your unit or the council office staff can access at any time. This could come in handy later on in a Scout’s career. Also as advancement chairs move and change you have your current records safe for easy retrieval and verification.
  • The system will allow you to manage your unit’s service projects by seeing current status.  You can also compare your service hours to previous years.  You can check on this status 24/7/365.
  • This method will save you time and peace of mind by knowing that your units service records are safe and retrievable at a moments notice..

I am dismayed to report that as I write these words this tool is only reflecting 2.6 hours of community service per registered Scout in the Council.  Of course, more community service than this is being performed (as evidenced, at least, by the number of Star, Life and Eagle advancements already recorded!)  However, unit leaders in our State just are not using the system.

If we do not record what we are doing, we can not make accurate measurements for future improvement.  I ask all of you to record all of the community service performed by all the youth in your programs in this system.

One of the purposes of this letter is to provide you with a list of procedures to access the online service hour reporting system.  From your myscouting.org dashboard, you will see a link for “Service Hours Reporting”, as reproduced on the first page of this letter.  If you click on that link, you will be taken to another site, where you can login with a userID and password for your unit.  If you do not have this information, please call Michelle Ferguson at the Great Falls Scout Office (406-761-6000) and she can provide you with those login credentials.

After you have logged in, you will be taken to a page where you can record service hours or look at reports of previously recorded projects.

After providing the category of the service project (Food Drive, Conservation, etc.) you will have the opportunity to record the number of youth and adults participating, and the total hours of service donated.  A copy of that screen is provided to the right.

Recording the service that we provide is an important step in being able to define our future goals.  It also helps your unit, your district and your council as we tell the story of the worth of Scouting to the community at large.  I again ask you to utilize this system to record every service hour from every youth in every unit in our council.

If you need help please contact one of the professionals at the council office for help. They will walk you through the process. Give it a try it will make your life easier.

Thank you very much for your help with this project, and I hope that you continue to have a great Scouting summer!

Yours in Scouting,

Aaron Weissman
Vice President for Program
Montana Council, BSA

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Volunteers Needed! An Opportunity to Do a Good Turn for Special Olympics

Special Olympics Montana is again putting on the Pedal for the Medal bike ride to raise funds for their programs! We could use your help!

WHAT
Pedal for the Medal is a fundraising event that features 25, 50 & 100-mile bicycle routes along the Missouri River and Smith River basin outside of Great Falls. This is a fully supported event, meaning we provide rest stops, bicycle mechanics, motorcycle escorts, road signs for safety, lots of food and drinks, and a celebration BBQ at the Finish.

FOR WHOM
Special Olympics Montana touches the lives of over 2,000 intellectually disabled athletes and their families. SOMT boasts over 40 years of empowering and celebrating the achievements of people who often battle discrimination and exclusion in our communities. P4M will continue Special Olympics Montana’s tradition of inclusive community fundraising for this noble mission.

WHEN
September 7, 2013
7:00 am until 2:00pm

WHERE
Leaving from the Town Pump on Gore Hill, the ride will provide rest stops at Ulm, Cascade, Wolf Creek and Eden Bridge.

VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITY
We are looking for volunteer groups that will adopt a rest stop for the ride. We will provide food and beverages, banners, tables, chairs and signs. We need volunteers to set up the sites, put out food and drink for riders, and generally keep the rest area clean and welcoming. We’ll set up rest stops by 7:00 am on September 7th and take them down no later than 1:00pm.

CONTACT
Special Olympics Montana
Dawn McKenney
Tel: 868-3209
Email: dmckenney@somt.org

It’s time to Go Big and Get Wild!

Hello Boy Scouts, Varsity Scouts & Venturers!

 

          It’s time to Go Big and Get Wild !!!       Are you in ?

 

National Jamboree 2013 will be the first ever at the new permanent Jamboree site at the Summit-Bechtel Reserve in West Virginia.  Our Montana Council has been allocated two contingent Troops; however, if you want to be part of this awesome and historic event you’ll have to act fast because we only have a few spots left!  

 There will be opportunities for Scouts to serve in other ways, too.  Begin thinking about this now and watch for more information soon regarding:

   A.  3rd Assistant Scoutmaster – must be between 18 and 21 years old during Jamboree;

   B.  Troop Leadership – SPL, ASPL, Quartermaster, Scribe, etc.;

   C.  The Jamboree Patch Design Contest for our Montana contingent.

Please see the attached flier with some important info you’ll want to read, including some of the special and unique Jamboree 2013 activities you’ll get to do!

Other great spots to get information include:

  • https://summit.scouting.org   (Jamboree website – COOL!   The information on this site is generic to all units all across the USA;  for specific information on what we are doing, you’ll need to go to the MT Council website…)
  • http://montanabsa.org/announcement.aspx?aid=77   (MT Council website – this is the schedule for Montana Scouts; includes registration and cost information.)

 A few things to remember –

  • Only a few spots are left for this once-in-a-lifetime premier event –Register NOW !
  • Register online at the Summit website (see link above); plus…
  • Print out and mail in the MT Council Contingent registration form (see above).

 

            Paying for Jamboree is do-able and the entire trip is a great value –

A payment plan is in place to help;

There is still plenty of time to earn some of the money (popcorn!); and

Campership applications are due to BSA by October 1, 2012.

 

 

 

(Adults and Scouts who will be older than 18 – Jamboree still needs Staff !   Get more information and register online via the “Staff” link on the Jamboree website:  https://summit.scouting.org )

We hope you can join us for this Jamboree!  (the next one is scheduled for 2017)

Yours in Scouting,

  Montana’s Jamboree Leadership Team  

Hands Across the Border – September 28-30, 2012

The 31st International Hands Across the Border Invitational will be held at Rexford Bench Campground, located just west of Eureka, MT on September 28-30, 2012.  All registered Boy Scouts, Venturing Crews and Girl Scouts, Girl Guides, Rovers, Pathfinders and Rangers from the ages of 11 to 20 are invited to attend.

This unique event brings Scouts from both Canada and the United States together for a fun filled weekend of events and Scouting Friendship.  This year we will be celebrating the 100th Anniversary of the Girl Scouts of America.  So, come have fun and enjoy the celebration of Scouting!

The cost is $15 (US) per person and pre-registration is required to acquire the appropriate amount of patches and materials.

Attached are the registration form, camp schedule, information on our Dutch Oven cook-off competition and a map.

For more information, feel free to contact Jim Atkinson.

Jim Atkinson
PO Box 412
Kalispell, MT  59903
406-249-6765
theskinnypope@yahoo.com

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