Our Venturing crews do great service for our communities. It’s our co-ed branch of Scouting for young men and women ages 14 (13 if they’ve completed the 8th grade) to 20. Because they are a bit older, they can take on some of the tougher community projects, like one I just read about in Silt Mesa, Colorado.
The U.S. Bureau of Land Management opened up a section of its land to let members of Venturing Crew 225 salvage scrap metal as a way to raise funds for their Scouting activities. Using a truck and winch belonging to one of the Venturer’s dads, they scoured the backcountry acreage, pulling out old cars, refrigerators, and any other metallic junk they could find.
15-year-old Venturer Alan Bellio selected this project as a fundraiser for his Crew, saying “there’s a lot of scrap metal up behind our house…it’s mostly cliffs and gullies, very up and down.”
Sabrina Carmichael, their Crew advisor, says Venturers like the more challenging tasks. “Venture Scouts are allowed to do a little more extreme activities, to push the limit just a little, because they are of an age where the typical, door-to-door fundraising projects are not engaging enough to hold their attention. And the teens seem to like doing the work.”
It’s great to hear about young people of this age working so hard to keep their community spruced up and raise funds to support their Venturer Crew at the same time. What a successful sustainability story! It’s truly a “win-win” for these young people and their community, and I applaud their efforts. Congratulations to Scout Executive Mark Switzer of the Western Colorado Council for having such an active Venturer program available to serve both young adults and communities in his region.
It can be tough for youth programs to hold the attention and participation of young people of this age group, but as Scouters, we know the experiences that Venturers and other Scouts face are unlike those you might find in any other youth program. What steps have you taken to keep young adults engaged in activities like Scouting, whether as a registered member or in leadership roles to mentor other young people? Let us know what kind of success you’ve experienced!