Thoughts on Membership and Recruitment

From Council President, Steven Davis

Membership Recruiting Update

Every youth should have the opportunity to join Scouting. Our traditional efforts to invite friends to join us on the Scouting trail include hosting join nights, sending flyers to schools, participating in community events, and, well… just asking friends (which tends to be the easiest). Your district membership teams are hard at work generating support and material to help you with these efforts – but be on the lookout for training and suggestions in the coming weeks.

But what about people we don’t know? Or, what about people who don’t know Scouting really exists or what we do? We’re working hard to reach them too and we’re investing in a few methods to help.

Marketing: We need to raise awareness for our program within our service territory. To help, we’re investing in new market research and marketing initiatives so families are aware of the the Scouting program within their community. Plans include an investment in social media marketing, search marketing, YouTube videos, and more. If you see posts or content we’re sharing – please like, comment, and/or share. Your help gives our posts more eyeballs!

Recruitment: Every school should have a Pack, or availability to a Pack. Right now, that’s not the case. As a prospective parent or Scout, if you don’t have a Pack, Troop, Crew, or Ship that’s nearby and/or meets on a date that’s convenient with your schedule, you’re likely not going to join that unit.

We need to do a better job starting and supporting new units. And that’s hard work. Real hard. To help, we’re creating a couple new positions: A New Unit Director and a New Unit Support Specialist. The New Unit Director will help forge new and strong relationships with Chartered Partner Organizations, outline the strategies to build a strong unit, and gain their commitment to helping. Concurrently, the New Unit Support Specialist will help execute the recruitment of both Adult Volunteer and Youth Members. Every new unit will also have a Volunteer Commissioner to be a friend and resource.

Yes, we need to support our current units and current membership. Unit Commissioners, District Volunteers, District Directors, and District and Council Events are all meant to lend this support. 

Yes, we need solid program. Round tables are meant to facilitate the sharing of ideas and best practices. District and Council events, like Camporees, Webelos-Rees, Cub Scout Adventure Day, Family Camp, Day Camps, Summer Camps… all are valuable programs to help support programs ran by units.

There’s much we need to do, as always. But with the support of amazing volunteers, focused effort, a great program, and high demand (I mean, who doesn’t need Scouting) – I’m confident we can continue our path of providing every youth the opportunity to join Scouting.