Why we chose to be involved in B.S.A. youth programs
“I decided to have my daughter involved in Scouting because it teaches her important life skills. I am glad that she has been able to make many friends in her Cub Scout Pack. I am also excited that her brother gets to join her in Scouting soon and we don’t have to be involved in two different organizations.”
Mother of 3 children
Scouting is a youth development program designed to help youth of all ages grow into the feature leaders of America. Scouting accomplishes this goal by focusing on developing youth’s character. We focus our programs on these six fundamental areas of development.
- Lifelong Learning
- Faith Traditions
- Serving Others
- Healthy Living
- Building Character
More than just another youth program, Scouting is an outdoor adventure.
Young people learn best in experiences. Scouting is centered around the experiences youth will have in this program. Baden Powell Scouting father said it best when asked what Scouting is… “It’s a game with a purpose!”
Escape the indoors through Scouting. In society today, we live in a digitally saturated world, with video games, digital media, and other distractions just a click away. As a result, too many youths find the challenges of the world too difficult to overcome. Our programs are for boys and girls and are an environment where young people can grow into the best versions of them-selfs. This program accomplishes this vision by volunteer mentors in your community to lead the adventures side by side with you. Adventures will include camping, hiking, shooting sports, canoeing, and so many more we don’t have room to mention them all. Youth will learn character and leadership skills in this hands-on program that excites youth and friends. In our programs, youth will find friends, mentors, parents will connect with their children, and your children will grow.
Scouting is made up of individuals just like you
Scouting is a volunteer-run program. All of the people you see working with the youth at your local Scouting program (unit) are individuals who give of their time to make this program work for the youth in your community. Most of the time these volunteers are the parents/guardians of youth who you see participating in the unit. That’s good news as everyone you see once had questions about how to get involved. They are there for you as they were once just like you, feel free to ask them any questions you have.
Are you ready to get involved in Scouting Unit?
Great follow these steps…
- Find your local unit
- Reach out to the unit
- Attend a unit meeting
- You are welcome to attend a few meetings before joining!
- Fill out the application online to become a Scout
- Both you and your, youth can join online.
- Congratulations on becoming a member of Scouting.
- If you need financial assistance to participate. Scholarships are available.
Have further questions we are happy to help
Please do not hesitate to reach out to one of our staff if you have any questions.
- Great Alaska Council, Boy Scouts of America
- 3117 Patterson St. Anchorage, AK 99504
Creating a New Scout Unit
Not every community, church, school, or organization has a Scouting pack, troop, or crew associated with it. Sometimes, starting a new group is the best way to bring Scouting to your community. With a willing group of volunteers and interested youth, it’s easy to get Scouting started near you. The first step to creating a unit is to reach out we are here as a guide to you. Reach out today.
Contact Us at the Scout Service Center & Store
Address: 3117 Patterson Street, Anchorage, AK 99504
Local (907) 337-9547
Toll-Free (800) 478-9549
Fax (888) 343-0329
How Scouting Units are Organized
Every Scouting unit requires adult leaders, youth, and a chartering organization. First, the chartering organization agrees to adopt the Scouting program. Then you must recruit and train the leaders. Once you have trained leaders ready to start, recruit the youth. From there you can plan your program year, complete the paperwork, and hold your first meeting.
What is a Chartering Organization?
A chartering organization, such as a church, school, concerned citizen’s group, agrees to work with the specific pack, troop, or crew. They’ll provide meeting space, help find and approve adult leaders, and appoint an individual as the Chartered Organization Representative. This representative works as a liaison between the organization and the Scout group.
Any organization can be a chartering organization and there are no special qualifications. The chartering organization falls under the insurance of the Boy Scouts of America.
How Many Youth are Needed?
A minimum of 5 youth is required to start a new unit. the most successful units start with at least 10 youth.
What Leaders are Needed?
There are different leader requirements for different types of Scouting units. All units must have a Chartered Organization Representative. If a single organization sponsors more than one unit (like a Pack and a Troop), that representative must be the same person for both units.
For a Pack you need:
- Cubmaster (plan and lead the monthly pack meeting, keeping the kids and families engaged and excited)
- Committee Chair (lead behind the scenes administrative tasks and support efforts to run the pack)
- Chartered Organization Representative (act as a liaison between the pack and chartering organization)
- Two Committee Members (work with the committee chair to run the pack in roles like treasurer or secretary)
- Den Leader (plan and lead the den meetings for one age group, helping the boys earn advancements)
Not required but recommended: Assistant Cubmaster(s), Assistant Den Leader(s), additional committee members
For a Troop you need:
- Scoutmaster (support and guide the youth leadership as they plan and lead the troop meetings)
- Committee Chair (lead behind the scenes administrative tasks and support efforts to run the troop)
- Chartered Organization Representative (act as a liaison between the troop and chartering organization)
- Two Committee Members (work with the committee chair to run the troop in roles like treasurer or secretary)
Not required but recommended: Assistant Scoutmaster(s), additional committee members
For a Crew you need:
- Advisor (support and guide the youth leadership as they plan and lead the crew meetings)
- Committee Chair (lead behind the scenes administrative tasks and support efforts to run the crew)
- Chartered Organization Representative (act as a liaison between the crew and chartering organization)
- Two Committee Members (work with the committee chair to run the crew in roles like treasurer or secretary)
Not required but recommended: Associate Advisor(s), additional committee members
The Boy Scouts of America does not operate Cub Scout Packs, Scouts BSA Troops, or Venturing Crews. The Boy Scouts of America charters organizations to use the program as a resource for children, youth, and families. Because the program of the Boy Scouts of America is conducted only through chartered organizations, it is imperative that adequate attention be given to the support of organizations that are chartered to operate units. Our success can only be assured if the chartered organization considers itself successful in the delivery of the Scouting program to young people.
The BSA has been granted a rare Title 36 congressional charter, which is presented to select national organizations
Following its incorporation in 1910 in Washington, D.C., the Boy Scouts of America became increasingly popular across the United States. Congress recognized Scouting’s potential as an educational resource and, in 1916, granted a Federal charter to the Boy Scouts of America to make the program available to boys through community organizations. Under its Congressional mandate, the Boy Scouts of America, in turn, can issue two kinds of charters:
Charter type 1:
Is issued to a local Scouting council and gives that local council the authority and responsibility to provide services to community organizations, enabling them to use the Scouting program for their young people and the surrounding community. There are more than 300 local councils throughout the United States and its territories. In Alaska, we have two councils one that serves Western, South Central, and South East Alaska. This Council is known as the Great Alaska Council. The Second Council in Alaska Serves the North Eastern part of Alaska and is known as the Midnight Sun Council.
Charter type 2:
Is issued annually to community organizations granting them use of the Scouting program, operated under its own leadership, to serve the children, youth, and families for which it has a concern. The Boy Scouts of America is an educational resource program. It charters religious, educational, and other community organizations or groups to use Scouting as part of their service to their own members, as well as the community at large. The Great Alaska Council provides the support services necessary to help the chartered organization succeed in its use of the program. The responsibilities of both the Great Alaska Council and the Charted Organization are described in more detail in the next section.
Organizations Chartering a Unit
A BSA Charter is good for up to 18 months for a first-time charter after that charters are issued for one calendar year. With Charter Renewals starting in spring each year and a new Charter issued from July 1 of the current year to June 31st the following year.
Download the Annual Charter Agreement for your organization to review
As a Charter Organization, each time you renew your BSA Charter your Organization Agrees to:
- Conduct the Scouting program according to its own policies and guidelines as well as those of the Boy Scouts of America.
- Include Scouting as part of its overall program for youth and families.
- Appoint a chartered organization representative who is a member of the organization and will represent it to the Scouting district and serve as a voting member of the local council. (The chartered organization head or chartered organization representative must approve all leader applications.)
- Select a unit committee of parents and members of the chartered organization (minimum of three) who will screen and select unit leaders who meet the organization’s standards as well as the leadership standards of the BSA. (The committee chairman must sign all leadership applications.)
- Provide adequate facilities for the Scouting unit(s) to meet on a regular schedule, with time and place reserved.
- Encourage the unit to participate in outdoor experiences, which are vital elements of Scouting.
The Council Agrees to provide your organization the following each time we issue you a charter:
- Respect the aims and objectives of the organization and offer the resources of Scouting to help in meeting those objectives.
- Provide year-round training, service, and support to the organization and its unit(s).
- Provide training and support for the chartered organization representative as the primary communication link between the organization and the BSA.
- Provide techniques and methods for selecting quality unit leaders and then share in the approval process of those leaders. (A council representative must sign all leader applications.)
- Provide primary general liability insurance to cover the chartered organization, its board, officers, chartered organization representative, and employees against all personal liability judgments. (up to 1 million dollars per occurrence)
- Provide camping facilities, a service center, and a full-time professional staff to assist the organization in every way possible.