Last Tuesday I got a call asking if I could take care of Round Table this month. After some thought I decided that since we had a few new people last month it might be helpful to go over a few basics. So we discussed the Venturing Awards program. Specifically, the Religious Life Bronze and the Gold award.
I discussed the Religious Life Bronze in a previous post, so I won't discuss that much here. I was surprised, however, that a couple of our regulars didn't know much about this award. After discussing the requirements and how they can be met, one person commented that most of the boys have already done all that. And yet, in our district there have been less than a dozen of these awards awarded since Venturing started in 1998.
We also talked about the Gold award. I really like this award because it is so personal. The largest part of the requirements are a series of six personal goals. It can be tailored exactly to the needs and interests of any young man. And if they are actively working on it, they can earn it in a year. Guess how many of these awards have been earned in our district since 1998. As far as I can tell--one. And that was last week when one of my young men had his review.
We also talked about some of the awards that are available to adult leaders. Now, I know a lot of adult leaders don't want to earn awards, and that's fine. Scouting is for the boys, right? But I found that pursuing the Venturing Leader's Training award gave me a goal to shoot for, and kept me doing the kinds of things that Venturing leaders ought to do. I think my pursuit of that award made a difference for my young men, and that's the point I tried to make. I also suggested that they could be a tool for the stake leaders to get the young men presidents on board, simply by challenging them to earn it.