U. S. Scouting Service Project at http://www.usscouts.org


LEADER IDEAS

I asked for ideas for different service projects that packs have done. Below you will find many ideas that were sent to me. I thank everyone for helping me out.

When I was a Den Leader at Pack 939 in Florissant, MO, one of the good turn projects our Cubs did was serving as greeter as Sunday Mass. One or two Cub Scouts would come in uniform to the 10:30 Mass in uniform and greet parishioners as they came to Church. Chris, Baloo's Bugle

While I was a cubmaster, our December pack meeting was always "Good Turn" events. Each den would be responsible for coming up with an idea and a recipient agency. My favorite was buying large quantities of dried beans (different colors make a good-looking bean soup). Quart Baggies, either a quarter-cup or half-cup measure for each bean type. (depends on how many varieties you have. I usually had 5.) Boys would go down the line putting one scoop of each bean in the baggie. We'd also put a printed recipe in each bag. These would go to the Salvation Army. One baggie would feed a full family at least once. Dried beans would not go bad if left on the shelf for long. The Salvation Army always seemed appreciative of these gifts and the boys loved putting them together. Also collected good used or new toys. Made placemats or other tray decorations for retirement homes. Nancy Rogers Will Rogers Council, Oklahoma

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Each year in December, our Pack gathers empty coffee cans and decorates them with holiday paper. We then have the boys fill them with cookies donated by the various families in the Pack. These are then distributed to residents of the veterans administration hospital in our area as a holiday treat. The vets love it and the boys get a great kick out of doing something for the vets. That's Pack 305, Kearny, NJ, Hudson Liberty Council.

Jim Miller, Sr.

JJMSR@LSFCU.ORG

http://www.lsfcu.org/

http://www.stefford.com/hlcbsa/

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1) Made and served a full-spread turkey meal including - turkey, dressing, mashed potatoes, gravy, 2 vegs, 2 salads, buns and cake - to residents of a local low-income apt complex (12 residents). Even included tablecloth and den-made decorations that the residents could keep. Asked residents to bring their own plates & silver and instructed them to divide and keep the leftovers. They loved it. 2) Made wooden toys, then visited a shelter for homeless families in a neighboring large city to tour the facility and give these toys to the shelter for the homeless kids for Christmas day. Den leaders cut out wooden blocks and the Cubs sanded and marked them like dice and/or letter blocks. Also made simple wooden tops. This was a real eye-opener for our Cubs who all come from moderate-income homes.

Barb Stephens Academic Computing Creighton University

bsteph@creighton.edu

Omaha, NE 68178

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Our Bear den did a good turn by making Pine Cone Birdfeeders (spread peanut butter on pine-cones, roll in birdseed) and taking them out to a local retirement home. We hung them on the trees outside of the residents' windows and then went in and sang Christmas carols to the residents. This year we will do the same and stay and play board games with the residents. Birdfeeders are great because many of the residents are bedridden and cannot make it to the main hall. By hanging a feeder outside of the room window, they can have some feathered company. This also raises some awareness about our elders in an age when most families do not care for elderly relatives at home. Prepare the boys ahead of time that they may smell some smells that are unpleasant, etc., and why this is so, and be prepared to answer questions. It raised a very interesting discussion among the Scouts afterwards. My boys did great and cannot wait to do it again (we also went back in the Spring with birdhouses)!

Have a great time with this idea. Your Scouts will love it!

Lorie McGraw, Webelos Leader Pack 410

Etowah Creek District, Indian Waters Council, Columbia, SC

http://home.att.net/~llmcgraw/etowah/ecd-indx.htm

Visit the Slide Show for great Neckerchief Slide Ideas:

http://home.att.net/~llmcgraw/etowah/slides.htm

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When I was Cubmaster we annually went to a local nursing home and went Christmas Caroling. I noticed that we were always tripping over other groups doing the same thing. Everybody always remembers the old people at Christmas. We changed our plan and started going to the home in March and doing our regular Pack Meeting for the residence. We wheeled them down to the dayroom and back. We did an opening, songs, skits and awards. Afterwards we had (with approval) refreshments. The residents loved it and the boys warmed to the task after the first 10 minutes or so. The only concession we made was we made sure we sang songs the residents already sang - so they could join in.

Mike GO VOLS ! GO 3 !

I used to be an Owl...But I'll always be an Eagle! NE-IV-92

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One of our cubs was at Brisbane's exhibition (big fair) and he and his family were watching the sheep dog trials when one of the dog owners had a heart attack in the middle of the arena. The cub asked his mother if he could go and help the people with the man because he had done his blue level first aid badge the previous week.

We recently did a Doorknock for the Australian Heart Foundation. All but two of our cubs (pack of 20) walked on two consecutive weekends to raise money for heart disease research. Great effort for 8 - 11 years olds. Most of their parents helped us too.

One cub was out shopping with his mother. This cub had a broken arm at the time. He had plaster on his arm almost up to his shoulder. He helped an old lady carry her groceries out to the bus stop and when the lady wanted to pay him he said no and that cub scouts should do a good turn every day.

Barbara Riley, Cub Scout Leader

Burpengary, Qld, Australia

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Here is an interesting thing that I did with my two sons last Xmas. I had an attack of the Scroogies last year and refused to participate and "put on" a Christmas for everybody. My boys unexpectedly agreed with me as they too didn't want to go through all the preparations, etc. and since my father wasn't able to come the 1400 miles to join us as he usually did, they said that Christmas wouldn't be the same anyway. Plus, they couldn't think of anything that they particularly wanted or needed. (I have two GREAT boys, don't you think?) Anyway, we decided that the reason for the season was to give unselfishly, so being a visiting nurse, we found a woman that needed hand railings at her back door so she could come and go without injury. We installed them for her on Christmas day as a surprise to her. She had no family that could have done this for her, as well as no money to get it done. After we did that, we went on to a relative's house and celebrated normally with them at the Xmas feast. Ooooh, what a feeling! We had a WONDERFUL Christmas filled with joy 'cause we helped someone else instead of ourselves. By the way, I hope to have a "regular" Christmas again this year, but will probably always try to do some project like this from now on 'cause words cannot describe the feeling that you get when you give up something for another. My boys agreed.

Betsy "Beaver" Miller, RN, ASM, Troop 321, Tifton, GA

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Back in Maine, my Pack (I was a CM then) as their "admission" to our Christmas Bowling Party, brought toys, games, coloring books, crayons, etc. to donate to under privileged children in our community. The Pack actually paid for the Bowling out of Pack money (plus the owner gave us a real break $1 for shoe rental & $1 for 2 strings of play each). The donated toys were given to the local Kiwanis Club that put together community Christmas Baskets for about 100 area families. We timed it so that the toys would be there the day the Kiwanis Club had the parents come to choose a toy for each child in their family. Everyone in the Pack thought it was a wonderful idea.

The other good turn was they went to the local nursing home to sing Christmas Carols and serve Christmas cookies and punch. Here in Iowa, our Pack participates in the annual Holiday Parade. The older boys are dressed up as the 8 reindeer (including Rudolph) and pull the sleigh Santa is in (good thing the sleigh is built to pull easily 'coz "Santa" is not a light weight). The other boys wear elf hats and hand out candy canes to all the children along the parade route. I consider this a good turn as are helping to bring cheer to the community and most people don't realize we're Cub Scouts (between the costumes and being bundled up you can't see the uniforms). Hope some of this is useful to you. YiS, Dawn Moriarty, ACM Pack 62, Cresco, IA, Cub Scout Roundtable Staff & Cub Scout Camping Committee Chair, North Rivers District, Winnebago Council

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Last year, we asked each family to bring to the December pack meeting a pair of gloves/mittens, a hat, or a pair of socks. We strung a clothesline across our stage and asked each family to clip on their donation when they arrived at the meeting. By the time the meeting started, the clothesline was filled across the entire stage. We had invited a representative from a local home for abandoned or abused children who gladly accepted the items for they kids at her facility. Pack 305 Arlington, Massachusetts

Den and Service Projects

Santa Clara County Council

Collect clothing, toys, book, school supplies and canned goods for shelters for needy families

Make Christmas tree decorations, trays of favors, or holiday mantelpiece for nursing homes.

Visit, put on a skit, and sing songs at day care centers, nursing schools or nursing homes.

Read books to small children at day care centers; make friends with small children.

Save money from recycling, buy a tree, and trim it for a needy family.

Make holiday song books (decorate, staple or bind with ribbons) and give then out at nursing homes. Sing with them, first.

Make games or puzzles for shut-in, day care centers or needy families.

Collect and repair toys for Toys for Tots or a similar program.

Collect books and magazines for needy families, send them with homemade bookmarks.

Make bird feeders, string popcorn and cranberries and hang them where the elderly and the shut-ins may watch the birds come to feed.

Help elderly person or shut-ins to decorate their home for Christmas. Be sure to help them take down the decorations after Christmas.

Do yard work for the elderly or shut-in.

Clean up the grounds, plant flowers for the chartered organization.

Do yard work regularly during the month for a church or temple.

Please note:

Most institutions have restrictions; so be sure to clear with them before you undertake a project. When you are visiting a place that is normally isolated from the outside world, like a nursing home or convalescent home, please be careful about taking children who have severe colds. One official commented that their patients/residents are susceptible to outside germs.

Remind the boys that a service project is not limited to the holiday season. Many organizations need help throughout the year. The holiday season is just a good time to start a service project. Have the boys get involved in service projects year-round. Projects don't have to be big. Please read pages 9-10 to 9-11 in the Cub Scout Leader Book for a service project that will be ideal for other times of the year.

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