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Camperships: Insuring Every Scout has the Camping Opportunity.

God and Scouting

by  Pastor Gene Horne for the Alamo Area BSA: March 10, 2015

The Boy Scouts of America, Alamo Area Council (BSA) does provide Camperships for those in need so that every Scout can have a camping experience.  The opportunity to make application for a Campership is open until May 1, 2015, but what does it mean?  Why do we offer Camperships, and are they necessary?

A Campership is money paid on a child's behalf to admit him or her to summer camp but may also cover day camp or other Council coordinated Outdoor Adventures. 

I am one who favors a Scout earning their fees for camp and the Council has provided ways of earning those fees with various fundraisers like Camp Cards and Trail's End Popcorn sales.  However, when I went to camp most of the Scouts in my troop were blessed with a father and mother at home. It is unfortunate that this social condition has changed for a great many Scouts who now live in single parent homes.  

Female-headed households make up 31 percent of all households in the San Antonio Area, but 57 percent of all households in poverty.  For a single parent with two children, poverty is defined as living on less than $18,769 in income per year. (Source: 2012 US Census American Community Survey, 5-year estimates, Table B17017 and B17001)

Along with this social situation, often the new units have not developed a system where a Scout can participate in these fund raising programs.  In the 13 counties of Alamo Area Council, wealth is not necessarily distributed equally. Census data in 2009 indicate that Texas ranked among the top five states in income inequality.

There are wealthy units and poorer units; there are old established units and units that are just formed.  All these facts make the Campership program necessary. The experience of the BSA is simple, a camping experience is important for a Scout to stay in the program. BSA experience demonstrates that the longer the Scout remains in the program the more likely the Scout is to be successful in life.

In the past, the Professional Staff administered the campership program; it was the feeling of the Board of the Council that volunteers should administer this task.  It is our hope that the Council volunteers will understand the need and support the efforts of the Camperships Committee to provide for every Scout in Alamo Area Council the opportunity for a camping experience each year.  

For more details, including upcoming deadline dates for Campership applications, please visit www.AlamoAreaBSA.org/Camping/Campership or Email Campership@AlamoAreaBSA.org.

Yours in Scouting,

Gene Horne

Chairman of the Camperships Committee

 

 

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