For the sustainability of the Mount Baker Council and the youth we serve, the Mount Baker Council Volunteer Executive Board has approved a reduced spending budget for the 2020 calendar year based on the serious impact of COVID-19 on our current and projected income projections.  As many of you have had to make much needed but uncomfortable decisions regarding your own personal budgets during the pandemic, the Mount Baker Council has had to make similar decisions regarding our 2020 budget so we can live within our means.  

One of the decisions is changing the operations and hours of our Service Center’s Trading Post.  Below are the key changes and the new service hours for the Trading Post.

Everett Service Center Trading Post Key Information:

Contact Methods:

Store Hours:

We appreciate your support and understanding as we all work to ensure our organization can continue to fulfill our mission of delivering Scouting’s values to our young people. We know that with the support of our volunteers and our community the Mount Baker Council can come out of this experience stronger.

Understanding the national BSA ads and how you can share the Youth Protection message.

It is important to emphasize that the safety of children in our programs is our absolute top priority. That’s precisely why, over many decades the BSA has developed some of the strongest expert-informed youth protection policies found in any youth-serving organization.

Conversations about safety will be especially relevant over the next several weeks when those in Scouting and other members of the public will likely see and hear print, TV, social media, digital and radio advertising from national BSA’s Chapter 11 noticing campaign. Although only the national organization has filed for Chapter 11, you will likely come across these ads in the coming weeks and may receive questions from friends and family, so we wanted to make sure you knew their purpose and had the necessary information to address questions or concerns they may raise for you or others.

The BSA’s ads are designed and sponsored by national BSA to ensure that victims have the opportunity to come forward and apply for compensation from a proposed Trust by filing a claim by the November 16, 2020 deadline set by the court. This advertising effort underscores the BSA’s commitment to the dual objectives of its bankruptcy proceeding: equitably compensate victims of past abuse and continue the mission of Scouting.

You can learn more about Scouting’s Youth Protection policies and practices, as well as more information on the national BSA “Noticing Campaign” by following links to these national BSA resources: 

Even as summer comes to an end, we know that camping season is continuing strong!

While we were unable to operate our traditional resident camp, we can still welcome limited camping at Fire Mountain under state and county guidelines.

With Skagit County currently in Phase 2 of the Safe Start plan, Fire Mountain can offer campsite rentals to household groups OR groups of up to 5 individuals. While sites vary, the average cost of a weekend at camp is only $65. This fee includes access to bathrooms and showers, firewood, and one of the premier Scout camping facilities in the country.

To make a reservation at camp, visit: https://www.mountbakerbsa.org/camping/fire-mountain-scout-camp/

When visiting this summer, please remember:

There have been several work projects completed at camp over the past year, and also one or two that has been stalled by restrictions during the pandemic. When visiting camp, you can expect:

We have been working closely with the Skagit County Public Health Department to understand what the timeline may be to allow larger groups to use facilities at Fire Mountain. Unfortunately, until the County reaches Phase 3, we will continue to operate under these restrictions.

For more information, or to make a reservation, visit: https://www.mountbakerbsa.org/camping/fire-mountain-scout-camp/ or email us directly at council606@scouting.org.

Continue to stay safe and healthy this summer, and we hope to see you at camp. Scout On!

August 31, 2020

Mount Baker Council’s Adult Volunteers and Supporters,

For the sustainability of the Mount Baker Council and the youth we serve, the Mount Baker Council Volunteer Executive Board has approved a reduced spending budget for the remainder of the 2020 calendar year based on the serious impact of COVID-19 on our current and projected income projections. The Mount Baker Council has a strong fiscal stewardship tradition, strengthened significantly in the past decade through the volunteers of the Executive Board and guidance from the Council Finance Committee as well as our Council staff. It has always been our goal to deliver a balanced budget by year-end. As many of you have had to make much needed but uncomfortable decisions regarding your own personal budgets during the pandemic, the Mount Baker Council has had to make similar decisions regarding our 2020 budget so we can live within our means.

We’re thankful to our Scouting from Home, Safe Start to Summer Camp committees and our Scouting units that have been working to find creative ways to keep Scouting programs available for our youth during this pandemic and financial crisis. As we head into the fall, it is imperative that we continue this work and more, so that we may continue keeping our youth engaged and involved. The Scouting program is too important to put on pause.

Our Council’s income from support through Friends of Scouting, Special Fundraising Events donations and revenue from Trading Post sales, Camp Card Sales, and Camping/Activity programs (including Fire Mountain Scout Camp) is dramatically down by $700,000 at the end of July 2020 when compared to July 2019. While we are trying to be optimistic during this pandemic that our donors and supporters will continue to support our youth programs at past levels, nearly every key fundraising and revenue-generating event has been canceled or postponed since March 2020 and revenue from fundraisers and events such as the fall unit popcorn sales are projected to be half of original budget expectations.

The Council Board and leadership team have taken many pro-active steps during this time to address the expected revenue shortfall. We applied for and received a PPP (Payroll Protection Program) forgivable loan. We are increasing our draw on the endowment, and plan to capture all the money in our “rainy day fund.” Furthermore, we received a major gift from Janicki industries, a capstone gift to support the Strictly Business Patch Campaign from the Nysether Foundation, and additional major gifts from a few private individuals. We are thankful for the support of these terrific donors and the forethought of our previous leadership to build “rainy day” funds. While these actions have been extremely helpful, our Council income is still projected to fall short of fully funding our program needs.

We have been able to reduce Council expenses through cost-cutting measures by an additional $250,000 through this same period (Jan-July) and are planning additional cuts in expenses through the end of our budget year, but we must have further resources to continue our quality operations on a daily basis. It is a financial tenant of our organization to deliver a balanced budget that meets our program needs. Furthermore, we are committed to maintaining this core principal during the pandemic. As a result, and for the sustainability of the Mount Baker Council and the youth we serve, there are several adjustments we are implementing to ensure our budget continues to drive the much-needed program for our youth.

Based on the income projections and the additional reductions in spending, effective immediately (September 1st), the Council will be embarking on a new pathway to balance our operating budget by year-end. These decisions are not easy, but critically necessary to pursue a balanced budget. Some of the cost savings will be accomplished through the following actions:

  • Reducing our employee compensation and benefits budget through staff restructuring and furlough days. Through restructuring of our full-time and part-time staff, the Council Staff will be reduced to 61% of the staff count on January 1st. Actions to be implemented:
    • As of September 1st, three full-time staff roles that are currently vacant (Pilchuck DE, North Cascades DE and Fundraising Administrative Assistant) will be eliminated from the staff structure.
    • As of September 1st, the following staff members will be laid off immediately and the responsibilities of those positions will be merged in the new staff structure.
      • Jose Rodriguez, Salish Sea District Executive (full-time)
      • Carol Stobbe, Everett Service Center Trading Post Manager (full-time)
      • Vangie Visocky, Everett Service Center Trading Post Salesclerk (part-time)
      • Jeanette Clark, Bellingham Service Center Trading Post Salesclerk (part-time)
    • The remaining full-time staff will be required to take ten unpaid (temporary furloughs) days off before the end of the year. To accomplish this cost savings, the Everett Service Center will be closed, and our Council Staff will have one-day furloughs for a total of ten days (normally every other Friday) until year-end. Calendar of closures will be on our website.
  • Reducing fixed and variable expenses by taking the following actions:
    • With the closure of ten days for the furloughs through year-end, we will be saving costs in utilities at the Everett Service Center.
    • There will be no Saturday Trading Post hours at the Everett Service Center until the Everett community achieves Phase 4.
    • Starting September 1st, the Everett Trading Post will be closed during 11:30 am to 12:30 pm due to the reduced staffing.
    • To better coordinate services and sales, the Bellingham Service Center and Trading Post will be closed as of September 1st until further notice.
      • With the elimination of the Trading Post Salesclerk service position in Bellingham, the Trading Post operations will be handled through the Everett Service Center. Units that have normally utilized the Bellingham Service Center will be able to place orders through the Everett Trading Post via phone or email (MBCtradingpost@scouting.org). Orders received by 4 p.m. will be shipped by the next day (shipping and handling fees will be added to order total), dependent on the inventory.
      • The phone services at the Bellingham Service Center will be shutdown. All units and volunteers should call the Everett Service Center at 425.338.0380 for support or their local District Director.
      • There will be cost savings from reduced utilities usage, elimination of phone and copier contracts as well as other reduced expenses associated with the facility closure.

The past five months have been extremely difficult on all of us, including your Council staff. This pandemic and the restrictions imposed on our communities have forced all of us to operate on new terms. The restructuring of our staff and the closure of a facility are steps that our Council did not want to implement, but crucial to being good financial stewards. Each of the staff members released from our team have been working hard on your behalf during these unprecedented times. We wish them well.

How can you help us deliver the mission of Scouting and ensure a fiscally strong and independent Council in 2020 and beyond?

  • Ensure that your units and Scouts are participating in weekly Scouting meetings or activities, even if it is virtual.
  • Ask your Scouts to invite a friend to join Scouting this Fall.
  • Have your Scouts earn great prizes and unit program funds by selling Popcorn online.
  • Attend and buy items at the virtual auction on Saturday, October 3. Invite friends and family to join you online. Donate, or solicit donations, of items for the auction.
  • Attend and donate at a virtual community Good Scout Breakfast or Luncheon. There are many planned for the fall.
  • Participate in the Pull for Scouting Clay shoot in November.
  • Renew your past Friends of Scouting donation and sponsor a Scout or more ($205) if you are able.

This is a call to every adult volunteer to actively participate in ways to ensure the sustainability of our Council for the present and the future. We have an amazing opportunity to strengthen our organization during this crisis but cannot do so without your support. If you have the means, we need your increased financial support this year. If you have not already actively involved your friends and associates on behalf of Scouting, now is the time.

This letter is not intended to diminish the hardships we have all faced; between COVID-19 and health related concerns, job loss, civil unrest, and political turmoil, our hearts cry out for healing. However, we need to underscore the challenges facing Mount Baker Council and its ability to create life-changing experiences for our youth and families.

We plead for your help and leadership to ensure our organization can continue to fulfill our mission of delivering Scouting’s values to our young people. We know that with the support of our Board, our unit leaders, and our community the Mount Baker Council can come out of this experience stronger and  continue to provide the programs and services for the Scouts in our community.

Scout On!

Steven Davis
Council President

Kevin Nichols
Scout Executive

Join the Challenge

The Mount Baker Council is challenging every Scout and adult (leader or parent) to participate in a Community Service Campaign for the month of August.

One million minutes of service = 16,666 hours.

There are about 3,500 Scouts in our Council. That breaks down to 286 minutes, or 4.75 hours per Scout. That’s just over 1 hour per week in August.

We are also encouraging adults, family members, and friends to join in the fun and give back to your community. Participation is easy – pick a service project and record your hours using this link.

We want to track EVERY minute from EVERY person – Scout, sibling, friend, or adult.

We will be tracking hours on the Mount Baker Council website, so update your hours as soon as you do them so we can see where we’re at. The top 3 Units (hours per capita) will receive a free weekend of camping at Fire Mountain that can be used as soon as this type of activity is allowed at Camp. 

If you need ideas for what you can do to give back to your community, there is a list on

the Mount Baker Council website under the Virtual Campsite – Service Projects page. 

You are also welcome to come up with your own ideas.

Don’t forget to post your activities on Facebook or Instagram using #MillionMinutes and tag @MountBakerBSA.

Help us reach our goal of One Million Minutes!

The Million Minute Challenge runs from August 1st through August 31st. Minutes from any community service project, including Eagle projects should be logged in both the Million Minute Challenge link and your Journey to Excellence (JTE) dashboard.

Denise Lesniak SR VP Membership
It’s Summer Time! You might not realize it; but this is the perfect time to start recruiting new scouts. There are so many kids and teens looking for things to do this summer and Scouting is the answer. Get them involved with your unit.

Start by making sure your Unit Pin on BeAScout.org is updated with current contact information. We want to make sure families are able to find you. Reply to all inquiries and invite potential scouts to your next virtual meeting. Have one of your experienced scouts call a new scout (with two-deep leadership) to introduce themselves and talk about what your unit has planned in the future. Answer any questions and make them
feel welcomed.

Have you asked your current scouts to invite a friend to you next virtual meeting, event or awards ceremony? Remember….More Scouts = More Fun!

Cub Scout Programs:
How is the planning coming along for your Join Night? Have you come up with a secondary plan on hosting a virtual version? It is suggested to host an event in August and then again in September. Let your District Membership Chair and District Executive know your dates. Mount Baker Council’s Membership Committee is providing free Cub Scout handbooks to new registered scouts from August 15-October 15 and you do not
want to miss out. Units need to have a New Member Coordinator registered and trained, a scheduled Join Night (or two) and have viewed the fall recruiting webinar, available on the MBC website.

Are you looking for ideas and resources for recruiting new scouts? Check out the S’MORES Membership Club (Summer Membership Organization of Resources and Education for Scouters). These are a series of mini webinars covering everything you need to know for successful recruiting.

The sessions are held every other Tuesday at 7:15pm and past sessions are available to review on the Membership tab of Mount Baker Council’s website. There is time for questions and answers after each session.

Coming up we have:

Boy Scouts of America is also running a series of National Recruiting Webinars. Topics cover everything from using Scoutbook, to Den Leader Experiences to Geofencing and Fall Recruiting. You will find the current schedule (and the ability to view past webinars) at https://scoutingwire.org/marketing-and-membership-hub/.

Upcoming sessions include:

You will also have access to “Scout Talk” videos, promo videos, flyer templates and find out how to get Boys’ Life mini-mags online.

There is more!!!

Have you seen the ads yet for Boy Scouts of Americas’ Family Fun Fest? You can build your adventure on August 8 and September 12 on Facebook Live.
Make sure all of your scout families know about the event and start sharing it through your digital media outlets. It will be similar to their National Camp-In and that was tons of fun. Mount Baker Council’s Membership Committee with be setting up “Be A Scout Day” on September 12 in conjunction with the Family Fun Fest. We would like to have all of our units prepare a short video (3-5 minutes) or set up a virtual open house event
to tie in to the festivities. This is a great way to promote your unit and a great way to engage your scouts now in making a video or live presentation. Watch for more details coming.

See, summer time is the perfect time to start recruiting! Get that excitement going and let us share this amazing program with as many youth as we can.

One last note: coming this fall to Fire Mountain Scout Camp is our Cub Scout Adventure Day! Formerly Stampede. This is a huge open house at camp on October 17 for all of our Cub Scout aged youth to experience the adventures of Scouting. There will be opportunities for fishing, hiking, BB guns, archery, crafts and more! Put it on your calendar now. For our Scouts BSA Troops-we need your help running stations. This event has so much energy behind it; we know you will want to be involved, too. Let your District Membership Chair know what type of activity you would like to host.

For more information, please contact your District Membership Chair or District Executives and the Membership tab of Mount Baker Council’s Website.

A whole new world of “Scouting at Home” has increased our access to what scouting has to offer.  We can now connect with Councils from around the US to work on Advancements, learn new skills and just have fun.  

To help our scouts and scouters find the resources they need, we have put together a Scouting at Home section on our Council’s Web Site.  Here you will find information on:

Whether you are at home on on the trail – Keep on Scouting!

 

 

On July 2, 2020, the Mount Baker Council leadership made the difficult decision to cancel Scouts BSA Summer Camp at Fire Mountain for 2020.
 
While camp and our staff were ready to safely host Summer Camp, one of our guiding principles – camp will be run in accordance with guidance from local authorities – has forced us to take this action. A criterion to hold Summer Camp was that Skagit County be in Phase 3 by the opening day of camp. After extensive conversations with the Skagit County Health Department it has been made clear to us that due to the increase in reported COVID-19 cases the expected move to Phase 3 has been delayed. The expected length of this delay means that we will be unable to open Scouts BSA Summer Camp at Fire Mountain on time or within a time frame that makes providing camp weeks feasible.
 
Our Camp Program Team, Safe Start Committee, and staff have put in countless hours to plan a safe, fun, and challenging program for our Scouts. We appreciate their hard work and dedication. Summer Camp, and other activities at Fire Mountain, will be enhanced going forward due to the diligence and creative thinking of these groups.
 
With the change in summer camp plans, we are looking at ways to open camp – under strict protocols and guidelines – to units and Scouting families. Fire Mountain will only be made available once we have finalized small group protocols and have determined that state and county guidelines can be followed. Look for more information at a later date with any restrictions and availability. 
 
While we will miss seeing Scouts in the summer of 2020, we look forward to seeing everyone during the 2021 Summer Camp season when we kick off our “Purchase to Program” event culminating in the 50th Anniversary of Fire Mountain in 2022.
 
Thank you for your understanding of this decision. See you in 2021!
 
The Mount Baker Council 

Please NOTE that this page and future updates have been moved to our Advancement Section.

Merit badge counselors play a vital role in Scouting.  You offer your time, knowledge, and other resources so that Scouts can explore over a hundred different topics of interest.  That has always been a core part of Scouting and this hasn’t changed with social-distancing.  If anything, your services are needed more than ever.

Social-distancing has challenged Scouting and made it difficult to conduct face-to-face merit badge classes.  But Scouting had adapted and developed new ways of meeting online.  Many were skeptical about online Scouting at first, but after several months of conducting meetings and classes online, it is clear that online meetings are a very acceptable method for meeting with and teaching Scouts.  In fact, online meetings have a lot of unique benefits, such as allowing Scouts from across the US to connect with merit badge counselors with special skill sets, and allowing counselors to take groups on virtual visits to locations that would otherwise be inaccessible to Scouts.   

If you are a merit badge counselor and are considering online teaching, you are not alone.  There are many merit badge counselors in our council who have been running successful merit badge courses since the beginning of ‘social distancing’.  We have experimented with several approaches and are happy to share what we have learned.  

It is now clear that most merit badge courses can be taught, at least in part, online.  And if you don’t feel that your subject can be delivered online, consider that courses such as Wilderness Survival, First Aid, and Hiking have been successfully completed online and courses such as Archery, Horseback Riding and Swimming have been completed as blended or partial courses. 

Online courses are here to stay and anyone can deliver one. 

Scouts still need your help.  And we can help you … help them. The Mount Baker Council can handle registration and reach out to all the Scouts in our council and beyond.  This makes that part of setting up a course painless and allows you to share your services with as many Scouts as you are comfortable teaching.  We can also connect you with other counselors with a wealth of online experience.

Please considering sharing your expertise with our Scouts.  Get in touch with us and we’ll connect you with the resources to help you succeed. 

 

Online Merit Badge Formats 

There is more than one way to deliver a merit badge course.  Common online Merit Badge Formats include:

 

Virtual Meeting Format (Zoom Meetings)

Most of our Scouts are familiar with virtual meeting platforms such as Zoom.  This is a popular platform used by schools, for unit meetings and is by far the most popular platform used for online merit badges.  If you are not familiar with Zoom, we can help connect you with someone who can assist you in setting up a meeting.  

Zoom and similar platforms allow you to meet with small and large groups alike.  Running a class and participating in discussions is easy.  Hands-on tasks can be a little more challenging, but can be done with a little planning and creativity. 

 

Virtual Meeting Slideshow Presentations

For those of you with PowerPoint skills, virtual meetings are a cinch.   Programs such as Zoom are designed to work well with PowerPoint, PDFs and similar programs.  Classes can be entirely set up  in a slideshow format or blended with other formats such as discussions, breakout rooms, videos, etc.

Here are a few slideshows designed to work with virtual courses:

Other slideshows are available online and the best ones are likely the ones you make on your own.

 

Live Demos and Virtual Visits

For classes that need live demos, counselors can run live demos from their cellphone or laptop.  This allows you to tackle hands-on skills, such as fire starting or pioneering skills.  This can be done on Zoom, YouTube, Facebook and other platforms. 

If you have access to a medical office, library, power plant, farm, etc. you can easily bring 50 Scouts with you on a virtual tour.  This is invaluable as you can share a live experience with Scouts that would otherwise not be able to attend. 

 

Google Classroom

Google Classroom allows you to set up and organize merit badge coursework online.  Scouts can complete and turn in requirements at their own pace.  This allows you to easily connect with Scouts without having to set up a virtual meeting, or can be done in conjunction with virtual classes.  Many Scouts prefer this method of merit badge work.  

For merit badge counselors, Google Classroom allows you to easily organize and keep track of coursework for any number of Scouts.

 

Prerecorded Videos

A few merit badge counselors have recorded videos of their classwork.  Videos have been published on YouTube, Facebook and on Council websites. 

These videos can be used in a number of ways to fulfill or guide completion of merit badge requirements. 

The playback quality of recorded videos are generally far superior when downloaded or viewed on the web than the video feeds from platforms such as Zoom. 

 

Are Scouts Interested in Online Merit Badges?

Scouts from all over the US have signed up for our courses.  Some course have filled up by the first business day after posting. 

It is clear that there is a great need for this service and it is wonderful way to connect willing Merit Badge Counselors with needy Scouts.  With enough notification, we can generally fill up your class with as many Scouts as you are willing to teach. 

 

Some Requirements Not Suitable for Online Completion?

Sure, there are a few requirements that can’t be reasonably completed on a virtual meeting platform, such as the requirements of swimming or shooting.  That’s OK, because you can cover online suitable requirements for any given merit badge and assign the rest as homework or issue a partially completed Blue Card.  For the most part, experienced Scouts are used to being assigned homework and will be grateful for what was covered by the counselor.  After your course, Scouts are that many steps closer to completing their merit badge and potentially their next rank. 

 

Some Merit Badges and Requirements ARE Better Suited for Online Teaching

Depending on what Merit Badge you are instructing, you may find that it is much easy to teach in an online format than a live-in-person format.  

There are many Merit Badge Counselors who honestly prefer virtual meetings over in-person ones. 

 

Secrets for Running a Great Online Merit Badge Course

We have learned a lot of tricks to make our courses better.  Some of it was learned through trial and error while others were learned from other Scouters.  We’re happy to share what we have learned. 

What to Cover and what Not to Cover

That’s entirely up to you.  You don’t need to cover every requirement for a given merit badge to provide a valuable service to Scouts.  Look through the requirements and determine what you are willing or able to cover given your resources and time restrictions.  If you would like to cover more, but aren’t sure how to, reach out to other counselors.  We have shared ideas and come up with so pretty good solutions in the past.  

If you can’t cover some material, just let the Scouts know this.  Most are used to having to do “homework” and complete requirements that weren’t covered in class.  You can also issues partially completed Blue Cards so that Scouts can complete remaining requirements at a later date with a different counselor.

Should I run a single class or break it up?  

This depends on what merit badge you wish to deliver, the amount of content you want to cover and your own schedule.  There are several popular scheduling formats used by counselors across the US, so you have options.

Single Session Format.  If you have a merit badge with simple requirements, you may be able to fit it into a single class up to 2-hours long.  A 2-hour format is used by the Alamo Area Council and works reasonable well.  Many courses will fit into this time span and you can always end class early.  It is important to know that the attention span of Scouts diminishes after about 45 minutes, so it is important that you watch your time and give your Scouts a break.  It is possible to run a longer class, but this is not recommended.

Course with Multiple Classes Format.  Some Merit Badges have a LOT of requirements or have requirements that require a lot of time to cover.  We have seen courses broken down into 2-6 classes.  You will need to determine the right balance for you and your Scouts. 

When in the Day to Schedule your Course?  Well, that depends on what is available for you and if school is in session.  We have seen classes start as early as 6am and others run as late as 10pm.  Plus since online courses can be taken by Scouts in 4 or more times zones, you may be surprised to see how many Scouts are excited about taking a course at a given time of day.  Basically, morning, afternoon and evening classes all work for different Scouts.  

We have seen reoccurring classes that meet at the same time and same day of week (Example – Every Monday at 6-7:30pm).  Some programs schedule their class at the same time for 4-5 days in a single week (9-10am M, T, W, T).  Both of these models work for different Scouts and Scouters. 

When you publish the time for your classes, make sure you make it clear what time zone you are in. 

Bandwidth

You may find this is a problem, especially if you are playing videos on Zoom.  A virtual meeting delivers a lot of information through your internet connection, and your internet connection or those of your Scouts may not be able to handle it.  If you see video feeds freeze up or Scouts that need to be repeatedly readmitted, something is wrong.  Here are a few tricks and lessons learned to help out.

Optimize your connection.  If possible, turn off all other devices that are using the internet. 

Reduce your load on our meeting platform.  This is especially important if you have a large class of 25 or more users.  Consider the following:

CoHost

Per the BSA rules, you need to have two adults when meeting with Scouts.  That means 2 adults in a virtual meeting and 2 adults in each breakout room, with at least 1 each with YPT.  

Web Security

This is unfortunately important.  Here are a few basic rules:

Videoconferencing Etiquette

Like with any meeting, setting the rules early on can make your meeting run so much more smoothly.

Blue Cards

Issuing confirmation for completion or partial completion for merit badges is huge.  There are a number of ways that Merit Badge Counselors and troops are tackling this.

You’ll need to figure out what works best for you. 

 

Questions

If you are interested in running an online merit badge course, let us know.  We can help advertise your course, set up registration, get you electronic Blue Cards and/or connect you with counselors who have experience running online programs with Scouts.  

If you are a Merit Badge Councelor and interested in hosting a online meeting contact Neal Kazmi at neal@klahaya.org

 

Dear Scouting family,
 
The BSA is announcing today a small increase in annual membership fees. The Boy Scouts of America have worked to keep membership fees low, unfortunately operating costs have continued to rise and COVID-19 has compounded the need to increase the fee to maintain the program. The national membership fees goes to pay for the cost of essential services, including program resources, liability insurance for those participating in approved Scouting activities, youth protection, and other local community resources.
 
The updated National Membership fees will be as follows:
 
  • $66 for Cub Scouts, Scouts BSA, Venturing, and Sea Scout youth participants
  • $42 for Exploring youth participants
  • $42 for all adult volunteers
  • $75 annual Unit charter fee (effective August 1, 2020)
  • $25 one-time join fee for new participants (effective August 1, 2020)
We understand many of our Scouting families are also experiencing financial uncertainty during this time. We do not want finances to be a barrier to participation in Scouting and will do our best to assist families in need.
 
Locally, our Council also faces these same issues and are doing our best to address the impact of nearly three months of office closure, activity cancellations, and diminished fundraising campaigns. We know, however, that our staff and volunteers will continue to do their best to offer high-quality Scouting experiences during these challenging times.
 
The value of Scouting is undeniable for those within the program and for the community at large. During recent times Scouts have sewn masks, held contact-less food drives, continued to organize Eagle projects, and participated in a Scout Salute in honor of Memorial Day. Scouting remains an incredible value in both cost and experience.
 
We encourage you to read the complete announcement and FAQs. An info-graphic is included below which helps summarize the changes. The Council will continue to keep our families informed of any additional information.
 
 
Kevin Nichols
Mount Baker Council Scout Executive
 
Steven Davis
Mount Baker Council President