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ADVANCEMENT FAQs


taineering in the German Alps, and camp with European Scouts. Where stateside units might go to their local camps for winter cabin camping, we might go to a centuries-old castle.


HOW DO YOU RAISE MONEY IN AN OVERSEAS SETTING? Each unit seems to find a niche money-earning project that is needed by the base and helps with the quality of life for those military members based overseas. For example, our troop does an annual Christmas tree sale, as well as quarterly barbecue-sandwich sales that cover our expenses. We are required to do the same paperwork any private orga- nization would have to do to earn money on a military facility.


HOW DO YOUR EXPENSES COMPARE WITH STATESIDE TROOPS? Our travel expenses can be significant, but again you have to think European. The train is a cheap and affordable means of group travel in Europe, and significant reductions that minimize the costs are given to youth groups.


WHERE HAVE YOU FACED THE MOST CHALLENGES OVERSEAS? In 2000-2001 I was involved in a Direct Service Council pack in Oslo, Norway. We had to order awards a month in advance, often over the phone, which meant some pretty late nights. Training was not available, and litera- ture was difficult to find and obtain. Returning to Germany in 2006 I was amazed at what benefits are available online. The Online Learning Center, BSA literature, and the BSA Web site have made an incredible difference in the Scouting program overseas. ¿


Outdoor Achievers


National awards recognize Scouts who excel in the great wide open.


SCOUTS TAKE HOME all sorts of souvenirs from camp- outs, including bug bites, sunburns, and something better: great memories. Now they also can take home awards that recognize their outdoor achievements. The new National Outdoor Badges and National Medal for Outdoor Achievement recognize Scouts who excel in outdoor activities.


WHAT ARE THE NATIONAL OUTDOOR BADGES? These five awards cover camping, hiking, aquatics, riding (horseback riding or cycling), and adventure.


HOW IS ADVENTURE DEFINED? Adventure includes back- packing treks; canoeing, rowing, sailing, and whitewa- ter trips; climbing activities; and participation in national or nationally recognized high-adventure programs.


WHAT ARE THE REQUIRE- MENTS? They’re posted at scouting.org/scoutsource/ BoyScouts/Youth/Awards/NOA. aspx. For each badge, though, a Scout must complete the First Class rank, earn certain


merit badges, and participate in activities that add up to a specified number of days, hours, or miles completed under the auspices of the BSA. For example, the camping award requires 25 days and nights of camping.


WHAT ARE THE DEVICES, AND HOW DO THEY RELATE TO THE NATIONAL OUTDOOR BADGES? Much like Eagle Palms, gold and silver devices (small pins) represent addi- tional achievement. For example, a Scout who has earned the Camping badge would receive a gold device for each additional 25 nights of camping and a silver device for each additional 100 nights of camping.


WHAT IS THE NATIONAL MEDAL FOR OUTDOOR ACHIEVEMENT? This chal- lenging award recognizes Scouts who go beyond the requirements of the National Outdoor Badges.


WHAT ARE THE REQUIRE- MENTS FOR THE MEDAL? A Scout must complete three National Outdoor Badges (with specified devices),


earn four outdoor merit badges, complete training in Wilderness First Aid, become a Leave No Trace Trainer, plan and lead at least two hiking, backpacking, aquatic, or riding outings, and either plan and lead an adventure activity or serve on camp staff.


WHO CAN EARN THE NATIONAL OUTDOOR BADGES AND NATIONAL MEDAL FOR OUTDOOR ACHIEVEMENT? Any Boy Scout or Varsity Scout is eligible. There’s no adult award.


WHAT RECOGNITION ITEMS DO RECIPIENTS RECEIVE? The Scout receives a pentagon- shaped pocket emblem for his first National Outdoor Badge, along with a smaller emblem representing the activity area. Additional emblems represent other activity areas. Devices are worn on these emblems.


WHO APPROVES COMPLE- TION OF THE AWARDS? The Scoutmaster or coach signs the application, which is then submitted to the local Scout council service center for final approval. ¿


JANUARY•FEBRUARY 2011¿ S COUTING 15


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