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KNOW HOW


Road Rules for Teens “One of the most dangerous years in a person’s life is the first 12 months after receiving a driver’s license.” That’s a quote from the National Safety Council’s


website, and it should give pause to you parents of teens and to Scout leaders charged with the care of young people. We asked Amy Williams, manager of the Council’s Teen & Distracted Driving Advocacy unit, to share six ways that adults can help teens navigate that dangerous year:


Set up a safe-driving contract with your teen. Get it in writing and spell out restrictions, rules, and consequences.


 Coach your teen. Let him or her drive you someplace at least once a week to monitor progress.  No exceptions: Don’t allow underage passengers in the teen driver’s car for the first year.


 Forbid any cell-phone use while driving. “Multitasking” is a myth, Williams says. You simply cannot drive a car safely while texting or talking. And that includes hands-free phones. They all increase the risk of accidents.


 Parent and group leaders should model good behavior when driving with teens. This means no cell-phone use for the grownups, either. Remember: The kids are watching you.


 Find a wealth of materials on this topic at driveithome.org, including coaching tips, sample agreements, videos, and blogs that will help you help teen drivers stay safe.


For Adventure If you’re a huge fan of Philmont Training Center, consider becoming a Philmont Ambassador for your local council. The Ambassadors serve as local advocates and info sources, promoting Philmont opportunities to unit, district, and council volunteers and professionals. The Ambassadors program was part


FIELD NOTES Philmont’s Envoys


of Scouting in the 1970s, says Andrea Watson, associate director of program for the PTC. “It was so effective that we’re bringing it back to help spread the word about national training and high- adventure opportunities,” she says. Among other responsibilities, PTC


Ambassadors recruit volun- teers and professionals to attend conferences that will strengthen them in their leader- ship roles. They also conduct presenta- tions at events such as University of Scouting, Pow Wow, Roundtable and others, using materi- als provided by PTC. Monthly updates will be sent to the ambassa- dors providing information about PTC marketing efforts and support materials as needed. Watson says that response to the


revived Ambassador program has been “awesome” so far, with more than 100 approved. “We’ve already had several people recruited come to


the Training Center, and the Ambassadors are getting out the word that we have scholar- ships and can help fund their trip to Philmont.” PTC hopes that


the Ambassadors can also help to identify councils that have had


limited or no attendance at Philmont, whether at the Training


Center or on the camping side. “If we could find them, we could find ways to support them in getting people to come out,” Watson says. To find out how you can serve as


your council’s PTC Ambassador, please contact Andrea Watson at Andrea. Watson@scouting.org or (575) 376-2281.


SEPTEMBER•OCTOBER 2013 ¿ S COUTING 7


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