Welcome to the Adventure of Cub Scouting
From outdoor adventures to character building, now is the time to invite new families to experience all that Scouting has to offer. Our Sign Up for Scouting plan blends traditional and new campaign strategies that will help your pack welcome new members all while showcasing the adventure of Scouting.
Online Registration Guidebook – Detailed information from the BSA national website to help everyone get started.
Key Elements To A Successful Scouting Night
Setting Up Your BeAScout Pin
BeAScout is an online site that prospective members can use to find a unit near them. To prepare for your My.Scouting tools online registrationto go live, please verify that your BeAScout pin is tuned on and that the contact information is current and displays the information you want shown for your unit.
You only have one chance to make a first impression, and BeAScout.org is frequently the first point of contact between a unit and a prospective family. Therefore, it is imperative for units to update their BeAScout profile to reflect the most current information.
- Step 1: Log in to your My.Scouting accounts – my.scouting.org
- Step 2: go to Organization Manager
- Step3: Update your unit information
- Step 4: Select the fields to display on the unit pine.
Your unit profile can only be accessed by the Cubmaster/Scoutmaster, Committee Chair, and Chartered Org. Rep. Additional leaders can be granted access as alternate contacts within the unit profile.
- Update unit contact (phone/email), website, meeting location information
- Turn on Fields to Display on Unit Pin
- Ensure ’Apply Online’ is turned on
Building and maintaining a strong relationship with your schools is critical for us to have an effective Scout recruitment effort. In an effort to enhance our relationship with schools and secure school access, a meeting with the school principal or other leadership should be conducted to strengthen and foster support for recruitment efforts prior to the start of the new school year.
- Meet with Principal/Superintendent
- Table at Meet the Teacher/Back to School Night
- Secure date/time for School Talk at your school(s)
- Approval for flier distribution (paper/electronic)
- Approval for yard sign and poster placement
- Approval for Scout uniform day
- Promotion via: school newsletter, email blasts, building marquee, morning/afternoon announcements
Families today are overwhelmed with advertising and marketing messages. Below are some suggestion on what units can do to get the message out.
- Host a table “Meet the Teacher” or “Back to School” night passing out information and flyers promoting the Join Night event.
- Hang posters in the school and yard signs in carpool lanes as well as other high traffic locations in the area.
- Distribute flyers (paper & electronic) and hang posters in school.
- Spread the word through emails directed toward school families.
- Distribute Join Scout Night event fliers with every K-5th grader the week before.
- Conduct school talks the day before or day of the Join Scouting Night.
- PTA/PTO or school social media channel announcements.
- Have your Scouts wear their uniform to school.
- Videos on in-school video networks.
- Send personalized invitations, emails and make phone calls to prospective families
- Promotion via: school newsletter, email blasts, building marquee, morning/afternoon announcements.
Our most important marketers are those of you who interact with Scouts and potential Scouts everyday: Unit leaders and Parents. Social media can help you with recruiting and communication. That means for many those personalized experiences are going to start with online engagement.
- Post Join Scout Night event details on social media channels i.e. Facebook, Instragram,etc.
- Submit Join Scout Night event details to council for Facebook geofencing promotion.
- Encourage families to share Join Scout Night event frequesntly on social media.
Scout Talks can make a huge difference when signing up new Scouts! In schools that provide access – doing Scout talks is the way to go. A Scout Talk is simply a visit to each classroom (or lunchroom/assembly) designed to get the boys and girls excited about Scouting. School talks and access is a major contributor to successful Join Scout Nights.
OUT -OF-SCHOOL PROMOTIONS
When school access is limited, several methods can be helpful for promoting Join Scout Night events outside of the school setting. These tactics should also be employed in tandem with in-school promotions when they are allowed.
- Distribute door hangers and conduct door-to-door invitations.
- Utilize recruit-a-friend and other peer-to-peer recruiting initiatives.
- Utilize parent-to-parent promotion.
- Use press releases where applicable.
- Distribute fliers and conduct Scout talks at after-school programs or churches in the community.
- Promote via church and community websites, calendars and bulletins.
- Utilize billboards, posters and yard signs in the community (businesses, churches, etc)
- Have a presence at community fairs, parades, and other events.
Packs with an excellent track record of recruiting and retaining members have one thing in common – they are prepared to receive Scouts into their program. A pack is prepared to receive new youth when the leaders have:
- A program calendar and budget for the next year with input from youth and families. A unit fundraising plan in place to keep costs low.
- Prepared a well-planned Join Night meeting that promotes the benefits of Scouting.
- A succession plan to determine the leadership positions that need to be filled and a plan for recruiting parents to fill those vacancies.
- Ask existing leaders to be new leader mentors to give support, information and encouragement.
- Develop a plan to contact each of the families after the Join Night to remind them about the parent orientation meeting.
- Scheduled unit meetings (i.e. den or troop) to start immediately. Follow up with families for youth that didn’t attend the first meeting.
- Invite families to participate in a fun outdoor activity within 30 days of joining.
- Building a strong relationship with your Pack’s school is important. A meeting with the school leadership will strengthen relationships and foster support for recruitment.
PLANNING YOUR JOIN SCOUT NIGHT EVENT
- Get help
- Set goals
- Get trained
- Reserve you spot
- Grab their attention
- Organize volunteers
- Scouting is Fun!
New Family Engagement is a three-step process which includes: Join Nights, Parent Orientation Meetings and Welcome Events. This section will assist you with the planning this process.
JOIN SCOUT NIGHTS
For units that recruit from multiple elementary schools, every school should have their own unique Join Night event for the convenience of the families that attend that school. These Join Night events will be conducted utilizing one of two methods.
TABLE STATION MODEL FOR CUB SCOUTS
Units will hold a come-and-go type Joining Night, which are strictly sign-up events. At this sign-up night, the unit will provide basic information about what Scouting offers youth and families using a table station model.
The table station model is designed for today’s busy on-the-go parents that are rushing from one event or sport to the next. This joining night method allows for a parent to show up and register their son or daughter in Scouting in less than 30 minutes. The important thing in this model is to get the family’s attention and let them see what Scouting is all about.
Join Night Stations: Station 1: Welcome and Sign In , Station 2: What We Do, Station 3: Registration (complete applications), Station 4: Check Out, Station 5: Questions and Answers
PRESENTATION MODEL FOR SCOUT BSA
“Join Nights” have been a keystone for recruiting for years, and for good reason: They work! Join nights give parents and youth an opportunity to get to know Scouting at a personal level, face-to-face. The presentation model lasts about 35-45 minutes and gives an overview of Scouting to parents while the new potential Scouts are outside or in another location for an activity.
Parents meet unit leadership, applications are filled out, questions are answered, interest is built, and parents see how Scouting is for families like theirs – no matter what that family may look like.
AFTER THE JOIN SCOUT NIGHT
Turn in applications, money, and a copy of the sign-in sheet: Unit leaders and the New Member Coordinator should review and complete applications.
Applications, registration fees and a copy of the attendance roster are to be turned in to your District Executive within 48 hours.Welcome your new families: Do not wait. Invite all families to first unit events the very next week. These meetings are the ONLY chance to make a great first impression, have fun, and involve new parents in the life of the Scout Unit. Leaders should make welcome phone calls and send welcome email messages with meeting dates, location, pack calendars, and any other important information.Follow up with families who did not sign up: This is where the sign-in sheet comes in handy. Check your applications against the sign-in sheet and call those families that did not join. Address any concerns and offer to drop an application by their home and invite them to the first meeting to see Scouting for themselves.
Welcoming new volunteers into your Pack is vital for its success – invite all parents to a special meeting (Parent Orientation) within a week of the Join Night. This is where the existing Unit leadership can get to know the new parents – and welcome them to new volunteer roles in your team.We all are busy, but we are big believers that we make time for what’s important to us. Scouting isn’t like soccer or baseball where we’re on the sidelines cheering our children on. Scouting is hands on.Whether it’s helping them learn how to tie knots, showing them how to use a hammer, or teaching them how to cook their own breakfast, parents will need to be involved.Use the following information for a parent orientation meeting to give your Unit the best start for a new year of Scouting and make sure your new parents are fully informed and excited to join in.
Units are encouraged to schedule their own events to welcome new families – i.e. movie night, camp out, lock-in, carnival, water bottle rocket events, ice cream social, etc. These should be family-friendly activities.
Units should also focus on assuring that all new Scouts have the opportunity to earn their Bobcat or Scout Rank within the first 60 days following enrollment. These advancement driven activities create recognition opportunities and are a great way to engage Scouts and families in the program.
The Gamehaven Council wants every scout to have the opportunity to fully participate in the scouting program and has financial support available for those who otherwise could not attend.
The leaders of Packs and Troops based in the Gamehaven Council are in the best position to have knowledge of Scouts and families in the Units who are most in need of assistance. By working through the Cubmaster or Scoutmaster, this will help identify any needs more accurately and readily. This practice is not meant however to exclude parents or other leaders from directly applying for financial assistance if requirements are met. Financial Assistance Form