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Leader's Virtual Lounge

A "virtual" lounge ?
Well, if teacher's have a lounge why can't leaders take a break or "chat" with their peers at the Leader's Virtual Lounge?

ADD/ADHD, Diabetes, Dyslexia and more...

Scout Bucks

Dime, Dime, Nickel

Home Sickness Cures (for camping)

Leader Protection

Parental Involvement

Taxes and Scouting



ADD/ADHD, Diabetes, Dyslexia and more...

More than once I've read a posting in a news group where a leader said "Johnnie/Susie has such-and-such" or is (fill in the blank). How do I cope with him/her ?" Well, maybe not those exact words but one thing that they have in common is a call for help. I've always been taught that the first step in dealing with a "situation" is to understand it. Learing about and understanding is just what this section intended for. In keeping with the spirit of this home page we'll defer to those better suited (and more knowledgable) to talk about these subjects providing a link to other pages.
As always, if you know of an additional resource please pass it along.

Children & Adults with Attention Deficit Disorders (C.H.A.D.D.)
Gaelic Wolf Scouting Pages / ADD, ADHD *& Related Disorders
Dyslexia, The Gift
National Attention Deficit Disorder Association
American Diabetes Association

National Child Abuse Hotline
Tel: 1-800-422-4453

Child Help USA accepts crisis calls from victims and perpetrators of child abuse; referrals to local reporting agencies and counseling facilities; 24-hour service.

National Down Syndrome Society

Answers questions and sends information on Down Syndrome; refers callers to resources in their communities.

National Association for Speech & Hearing Action

Information on all communication handicaps, advocacy activity and membership services; sends list of clinics, private practitioners, schools, hospitals and other sources of help in caller's community.

National Center For Stuttering

Tel: 1-800-221-2483

Free information for parents of young children who stutter; treatment workshops (for a fee) for older children and adults who stutter, and training sessions for therapists on the latest techiniques.


Scout Bucks

Have trouble getting the girls to remember Scout meetings, let alone everything they need for the meetings?

At first I thought wow, my meetings must really be dull but since I've had my girls for 4 years now it seemed that it couldn't be all that bad. I finally hit on this idea - actually I borrowed the framework from my daughter's 4th grade teacher - she uses a similar award program for her students and when I saw how well it worked for my daughter she and I decided to adapt it for our troop. Give it a go, it just might work!

Scout Bucks Incentive
Scout Bucks are a troop's special currency (in the form of dollar bills that can be earned or taken away. At the end of the year girls will be able to use the Scout Bucks they have accumulated to buy items from a special Scout Bucks Bag. We designed the Scout Bucks together on the computer - I have not included that with this file because it is a great creative troop activity to design their own personal Scout Bucks.

How To Earn Scout Bucks

Items that gain you $1 each

  • Attendance at meeting
  • Wearing uniform/pins at events or meetings
  • Bringing Badge book to meetings
  • Bringing all materials/badge work required at the meeting (per instructions previous meeting)

Items that gain you $2 each

  • Giving a badge report on a badge you are doing on your own
  • Completing a badge at home
  • Earning a Council patch
  • Other bonus items as agreed upon by the troop in advance

Ways To Lose Scout Bucks

Items that cost $1 each

  • Missing a meeting without calling one of the leaders first Reason must be illness or another commitment approved by parents
  • Forgetting uniform/pins at a meeting or event
  • Forgetting Badge Book at a meeting
  • Not bringing materials asked for at last meeting

Items that cost $2 each

  • Forgetting to attend an event the troop has registered for without calling one of the leaders first
  • Not returning a permission slip as requested
  • Failing to turn in money from product sales on time
  • Other circumstances as agreed upon by the troop in advance

Each girl will have an envelope with her name on it in which Scout Bucks are kept. To start the program out each envelope will have 2 free Scout Bucks in it. At the beginning of each meeting we will pass out the envelopes and award the Scout Bucks as they are earned, or take them away as they are forfeited. The envelope will remain with the troop leader between meetings.

The Scout Bucks Bag is filled with small trinkets, gift certificates, miscellaneous that pre-teen girls like. What you would choose to put in would be dictated by troop finances; I have also found that McDonalds and Burger King in my area are very forthcoming with donations of certificates for things like free French fries, a soft drink, etc. My local Ben Franklin store has lots of novelty items such as pens shaped like lipsticks, colorful pencils, erasers in weird shapes, small notebooks.

To make it cost effective I usually attach a fairly high price tag to things - for example a lipstick shaped pen with an actual cost of 89 cents would cost 5 Scout Bucks. I purchased a few things with dues money so they could have something to shoot for and will purchase the rest as cookie money comes in. My girls are 4th and 5th graders and this has worked very well for our troop - an unintended consequence has been to wake a few parents up as well.


Dime, Dime, Nickel

From:Pauline McFall

A practice that seems to work with troops in our area is the dime, dime, nickel.

  • The disruptive girl is handed a dime at the first offense (she knows what she did).
  • Second disruption she is handed another dime.
  • Third time she is given a nickel and an escort to the phone to call her parents.

Most troops do not have to go as far as the nickel. The girls are old enough to know (three strikes you are out of here). If you do not get to the nickel, remember the dimes go back into the petty cash for next week.


Homesickness Cures

From: Jocelyne Pasman

I have a friend who is a pharmacist and she gave me a LARGE pill bottle which has been labelled in magic marker "HOMESICK PILLS, guaranteed to work overnight. Take one and sleep well."

It, of course, contains Smarties, or Skittles and the child is usually either completely fooled (and the placebo effect kicks in) or gets a good chuckle out of it, and goes to sleep.

From: Eileen & Bill Kermode

Hello Folks,

I have a similar pill bottle to Jocelyn but my tablets take 10 minutes to work - so having given a tablet I tell the girl to go and lie down for 10 minutes because it will only work after that time. It has not failed yet - Guides are not fooled by immediate cure but one that you have to wait for seems more reasonable. :-))

I do not allow parents to mention the word Homesick because it is only when it is thought of that an epidemic occurs

From: Amanda Eyer

"After having to deal with this many times I find one of the best things to do is to find out what the girl wants to do. Keep them extreemly busy during the day with stuff they like to do. Then at night the chances of being homesick are less because they are so tired they fall asleep faster.

Another trick a camp nurse once taught me was to mix a little jello powder (or any drink crystels) with some warm water. Have them take small sips while you get them talking about anything that interests them. I guess this clams the nervous stomach and that green homesick medicine only works if, they go right to sleep and don't tell anyone else! :)

Have you tried getting them to write letters home, to parents, pets, whatever. You don't necessairally have to mail them but let them know if you are not.

Sometimes giving them a special job to do helps. Like looking after those kittens under the tent that aren't there. Or being in charge of wake up calls or making sure there is water out to drink or something that if they were not there doing that job it just wouldn't get done.

Remember, if it works for one kid it may not for another. Just don't get upset at the child.


Leader Protection

Awareness in the community of child abuse is increasing. The focus is mainly on teaching children protective behaviors and encouraging the reporting of suspected abusers. Despite or because of this increased awareness there is a growing number of child victims who suffer from one or more forms of abuse. All too often from adults close to, or known by them. Whilst there are treatment programs for offenders, unfortunately there is little advice or information available for adults who are not deliberate abusers and who are in vulnerable positions like teachers and youth workers. Adult Leaders in Scouting need some advise on how to protect themselves.

Scout leaders are in a very privileged and powerful position in their relationship with young people. They need to ensure that they respect this position and that all times their behavior and attitude can never be accidentally construed as abusive. Leaders who are deliberately abusive to children will not be protected by the Association. Leaders who are abusive through ignorance or accident not only harm the young person, sometimes as much as the deliberate abuser, but also run the risk of facing legal action or Association sanction.

The Scout Association has a responsibility to protect its members, youth and adult. Guidelines for leaders and Branch Policies and practices are needed. Currently our policy generally comes down to statements like "Never be alone with a child"; "Respect their privacy". Whilst this is good advice it generally only refers to one form of child abuse, sexual. Emotional and physical abuse are sometimes more insidious. It is often taken as 'OK behavior and rarely confronted due to uncertainty or ignorance of the effects of this type of attitude and behavior. Whilst some of the behaviors to be mentioned may not be severe or frequent enough to warrant legal action, they are all inappropriate to the aims of Scouting. They do not foster high self esteem or confidence in the child nor a positive attitude to others. In some cases they perpetuate the trauma of earlier abuse.

20 Ways to to establish personal protection for a Scout Leader

    Help to establish safe open communication in each section of the Group.

    Find out what constitutes abusive behavior and don't do it. (see 20 below)

    Have an "OPEN DOOR" policy. Declare all meetings open to parents, other leaders, and District Team. Have other children, parents, friends, or leaders with you with you when in any situation that could be construed as compromising or questionable. eg. camping, outings, private interviews

    Do unto others as you would have them do to you. Treat all children (and others) with respect and dignity befitting their age. Watch your language, tone of voice, and where you put your body.

    Confront others. Develop a Group etiquette that allows for leaders to feel comfortable and caring enough to point out to each other any inappropriate attitudes or behaviors.

    Encourage don't pressure. Be sensitive to each child's individual capacity for physical activities and protect them from any unwarranted pressure to participate.

    Encourage children to trust their own feelings about a leader's behavior and to assert their right to determine what behavior they are comfortable with.

    Respect a child's privacy. Expect them to respect yours.

    Develop a healthy lifestyle outside of Scouting with adults your own age. Encourage the lonely and isolated leader to do the same.

    Do not let children involve you in excessive attention seeking behavior that is overtly sexual or physical in nature. Be particularly careful with the very needy child. Redirect the behavior into 'healthy ' activities and provide caring attention before it is asked for.

    Don't be involved with a child outside of scouting. Keep your private life private. Don't bring individual scouts to your home, flat or elsewhere eg., to watch videos, play cards take photos.

    Act your age. Maintain an adult role model with young children. Be friendly, courteous and kind. Don't exaggerate or trivialise these child abuse issues.

    Mixed teams of men and women in either mixed or single sex mobs, packs, troops or units may provide for a safer healthier climate for the leader and the child.

    When in doubt - ask. One leader's poor behavior reflects on all leaders in the Movement. Denial of one's uncomfortable feelings is the single most common behavior that leaders, friends parents and children report on after an abuser is finally apprehended. "We thought something funny was going on but didn't feel right about saying anything". "Oh he's a really good leader with the kids, he couldn't do anything like that. He's so dedicated". "I didn't want to get the Association (or me) into trouble".

    Discipline and control 'behavior'. Don't abuse. Be clear that when a child is acting out that it is the behavior that is 'Not OK' and that the child is OK. Attack the problem not the person. Our task is to build self esteem not to shatter it.

    Be Firm and fair. Avoid favorites or a least giving them lots more attention. Likewise avoid concentrating on the "trouble maker". Learn disciplining and appropriate 'Parenting' skills.

    Encourage open discussion, particularly with older age groups, about what young people like and dislike about your behavior. Just as you give children 'feedback' about how they behave - invite and reward feedback about how they see you behaving.

    Find out what children are taught in school about 'Protective Behaviors' and respect this. It is different to when most of us were kids. eg. Kids have a right to feel safe - There is nothing so awful that you can't tell someone - Select 4 people you can trust to approach with any problem - Complain about abuse until you are heard. Don't expect a Cub Scout to obey the first law when they are being abused.

    Read your Branch 'Scout Code of Conduct' and stick by it. Refresh your memory about your Scout Promise and Laws you agreed to abide by.

    Do not engage or let others engage in any of the following:- Abusive initiation ceremonies;- Forcing children into macho type activities;- getting undressed in front of children;- invading the privacy of children whilst they are showering, toileting;- photographing undressed children;-sleeping in a tent with one child;- rough physically hurtful or sexually provocative games;- making sexually suggestive comments about or to a young person ;- inappropriate & intrusive touching, hugging, cuddling &qi kissing;- regularly scapegoating, ridiculing, rejecting, isolating or taking the 'mickey' out of a child. Whilst many might not be legally abusive, they don't belong in Scouting. They are hurtful, intrusive, set a bad example and don't promote safety.

Suggested Action at the Branch Level
PROTECTION implies :
Prevention before a warrant is issued - Education during leadership position - Action when an abuse is suspected. Each Branch needs to have clear policy statements on each of these areas and these policies communicated regularly to all leaders. WHAT IS CHILD ABUSE?
Each State may have different laws and legal definitions. Leaders should be made aware of what child abuse is. Leave no chance of denial through ignorance. Prevent fear of doing the wrong thing. South Australian definitions:

    Physical abuse - Any non accidental physical injury inflicted on a child.

    Emotional abuse - A chronic attitude or behavior towards a child which is detrimental to or impairs the child's emotional and/or physical development.

    Sexual abuse - Any sexual behavior imposed on a child under the age of 18.

Each Branch should publish from time to time annual child abuse figures to make leaders aware of the extent of the problem in the community. There are still ill informed adults who think the problem is a media hype.
Child Protection awareness programs should be part of the ongoing leader development program at district level as well as mandatory participation in the Gilwell training scheme.
Promulgate simple, clear procedures to provide information on how leaders can get;- advice and support when in doubt;- make reports or complaints without the need to feel guilty; - referral advice to professional welfare or police agencies.
Branches to ensure that up to date ethical statements in the form of a Code of Conduct is understood and agreed to by all leaders during yheir induction into Scouting.
Branches ensure that the best possible vetting processes for all applications are available and applied. That adequate records of known abusers are maintained and networked with other Branches.
Records of information concerning other suspected abusive adult's behavior and the action taken be maintained. All records to conform with the freedom of information legislation.

Article for Australian Scout magazine
September 1993
Robin Maslen (Social Worker)
Chief Commissioner
S.A. Branch


Parental Involvement

From: Sue Douglass

"...My last council (Peninsula Waters in Upper Michigan) had this program to try and increase parent support. We modified it some to fit our area's needs, but it is still basically the same. Now obviously, you will have to come up with your own certificate and patch, but the idea might still do the trick for you. Also instead of a patch, you might be able to find some nice star pins to give the girls. You will always have some parents who come and drop their kids off and pick them up, but who you never see otherwise. But for other parents, knowing that their daughter might receive a recognition for it, this may be enough. I hope this helps. I got my whole service unit involved in the program this year, and we are special ordering patches for the whole area. For some of the patch companies, when you special order patches, you have to order a minimum of 100 patches, and while we don't need that many this year, we hope to keep it going, and use them again next year.


The Star Family Program

To stimulate adult involvement in troop activities which will result in:

    Increase support for troop leadership.

    Expand troop program opportunities.

    Greater retention of girls and adults.

A girl must have at least one adult family member or adult friend complete ONE starred or FOUR unstarred requirement during the course of one year. (September 1 - August 31st.)

The troop will purchase a patch to wear on the back of her sash or vest. The adult(s) who completes the requirements will receive a certificate. If a girl and her adult partner(s) participate in the program the following year, the girl may purchase a "rocker" to add to the patch. The adult may receive a new certificate.


  1. *Serve as a troop leader, assistant leader, or co-leader.
  2. *Serve as a troop cookie/magazine chairperson.
  3. At least once, provide transportation for troop outings and/or meetings.
  4. At least once, help with troop telephoning.
  5. Assist with a troop project or special activity.
  6. Care for the leader's children during a training or troop function.
  7. At least once, assist with paperwork or recordkeeping.
  8. Locate resource people for the troop program.
  9. Accompany the troop on an outdoor activity (cook-out, hike, etc.).
  10. Accompany the troop on an overnight camping trip.
  11. *Serve as the troop first aider.
  12. Share a skill, talent, or hobby with the troop or a group of leaders in your area.
  13. Take part in an intertroop, area, or council activity or event.
  14. Take a Council sponsored training course to aid troop with weekly program.
  15. *Be a member of your Service Unit Team.
  16. Be a Day camp staff member.
  17. *Be a Council trainer.
  18. Attend a leader's meeting in your area when the troop leader cannot be there.
  19. Your own troop idea. Specify: __________________________________________


Two adults participate with one child: - If two adults participate with one girl, they may share the needed four activities. EXAMPLE: One adult could perform three services and the other adult complete the last service.

An adult has more than one girl in Girl Scouts? - A girl may receive credit for any combination or four activities completed. The four services may be divided among or between sibling Girl Scouts or the four activities may be conducted with any one of the girls. In either case, all sibling Girl Scouts may purchase a patch.


The purpose is to increase the adult participation with the program their daughter(s) is/are involved in.


Patches and certificates will be ordered in the spring as a group order with other troops in the service unit to keep costs down. Certificates are free, patches will cost approx. $1.00. Payment will be due prior to ordering.

Hi, this is me again. For Number 19, our troop used helping at a fundraiser. Also, if a parent drives for two different trips, it can count as two unstarred items. It does not have to be four different things, just four different times. If you have any questions, feel free to contact me.




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