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By:    On: 2013-04-18

My last tip discussed the Star and Life option for counting a Scoutmaster-assigned leadership project as a substitute for holding a position of responsibility. I asked you what sorts of projects you’ve used and quickly heard back from my friend James Spurgeon, who recently served as Scoutmaster of my home troop.

James has used the provision a few times. The specific example he cited was when he named a Scout to be the troop’s Scout skills coordinator in preparation for a trip to the Northern Tier High Adventure Bases. Here’s what James said:

“Over a six-month period the Scout set up a training program to teach orienteering, Leave No Trace, cooking, water safety, fishing, and canoeing skills. Some he taught; others he arranged for the class to be taught by other qualified people. The crew was prepared for Northern Tier and then some!”

I think that’s a great example, and it brings up another idea for a leadership project: putting the Scout in charge of planning a trip to a national high adventure base. That’s a job that often gets taken over by adults, but most of the work can be done by a Scout. For example, the Scout could research airfares and find hotel rooms and then have an adult make the actual purchases. Or he could coordinate the troop’s selection of an itinerary for its Philmont trek.

As a wise person once said, never send a man to do a boy’s job!

Republished with permission of Mark Ray at

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