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Does Scouting's Fundraising Efforts Called 'Friends of Scouting' have Value?

Scouting's Fundraising efforts is more than just membership fees 

by Angel Martinez for the Alamo Area BSA: December 9, 2015 



If you are a mother, father, grandmother, grandfather, or another supportive member of a Scout youth's family, every one of you has this in common - you care about your Scout kid!    This loved Scout is one of the 18,000 Scouts of the Boy Scouts of America, Alamo Area Council…one of the largest Boy Scout councils in the country.  And, it's pretty cool to be a part of the Scouting family that is both local and worldwide.

I’m a parent, a leader and a Friend of Scouting like so many of you.  Giving both my time and money to Scouting is very important to me and I know it makes a huge difference in the lives of so many Scouts just like you.

You probably don’t hear this enough…So, thank you.  I know a lot of adults put a lot of time into Scouting.  For those new families that have asked, I'd like to take time to explain "Friends of Scouting" and it's importance.  Does giving money to this fundraising effort have value?  Let's review some major points:

Don't Membership Fees support Scouting?

Families paid twenty-four dollars to sign a Scout up but many don't realize that twenty-four dollars goes straight to the National Council of the Boy Scouts of America.  So, how does the Alamo Area Council afford to deliver the cool programs and outdoor adventures that support local Scouts?

Think of the true cost of Scouting like an iceberg.   What you see above the water is only about twenty percent of the cost of providing Scouting to a youth.  This includes books, uniforms, Boys’ Life, equipment, registration etc., but there's a whole lot more below the water line.

What Are Ten examples of things my money supports?

1. Training for the more than seventy five hundred volunteers who make Scouting happen every year,

2.  Assistance for Scouts who cannot afford camp program fees,

3.  Council publications like the newsletter and Adventure Guide,

4.  Facility upkeep at Bear Creek Scout Reservation, McGimsey Scout Park, and Mays Family Scout Ranch (our council’s camp properties),

5.  National charter fees,

6.  Administrative support,

7.  Two council service centers,

8.  The council website and online registration systems,

9.  Two Scout Shops to make it easy for your family to get the materials they need for meetings and adventures,

10. Professional staff to help recruit new Scouts like yourself and so much more.

In fact, eighty two percent of the money raised through Friends of Scouting goes towards ‘direct service’ to youth.  

What are some real outcomes of Scouting? 

Beyond the fun stuff, many don't know that seventy five percent of America's leaders in business, religion, and politics were Scouts.

Plus, Scouts account for eighty nine percent of senior class presidents, eighty five percent of student council presidents, the eighty eight percent of school newspaper editors and seventy one percent of football captains.  

Before Sean Elliott earned his NBA Championship with the San Antonio Spurs, he learned the skills and knowledge to become a leader on the court through Scouting and through earning his Eagle Scout rank.

What does it cost to deliver Scouting locally?

It costs about two hundred and fifty dollars per Scout to deliver the Scouting program each year.  And, traditionally, just one out of every seven families in the Alamo Area Council participates in the annual Friends of Scouting campaign.  Imagine what the Alamo Area Council could do if ONE HUNDRED PERCENT of our families participated in Friends of Scouting.  It would mean top notch facilities for you and your family to enjoy, additional programming and resources that would ultimately lead to more Scouts like yourself enjoying outdoor adventures, achieving the rank of Eagle, and reduced costs for individual events like day camp and summer camp.

So, what do we need to do to support local Scouting?

The first step is to decide how much you as a family can pledge…keeping in mind that it costs two hundred and fifty dollars to deliver the Scouting program to just one Scout.  Knowing that some can give more and some not as much, if we all partner together, we can help Scouting be successful in South Central Texas.  Also, as a 501c(3) organization, any contributions made to the Friends of Scouting program are usually fully tax deductible.

Is it important for families to give more if they are able?  Yes, so that way they are helping those who can’t afford to fully support a whole Scout.  It takes all of us contributing what we are able, to help make Scouting possible.  And, it all starts with filling out a pledge card or making an donation online today!

How does a pledge card work?

A pledge card enables you to make the commitment and there are several options to make your giving easy.   No matter how you plan to give, it is important to remember to sign your pledge card and make your pledge today. Pledges can be paid over the whole course of the year. A $250 pledge amounts to less than $21 per month when paid that way.  CLICK ON THE FOS PLEDGE CARD COVER ABOVE TO BEGIN PDF DOWNLOAD.  Or, click to Donate Online, Today.

The Alamo Area Council’s Executive Board would like to recognize everyone who supports Friends of Scouting with special recognitions:

  • a $250 leadership gift receives a commemorative Friends of Scouting Shoulder Patch,
  • a $500 leadership gift with a commemorative pocket knife,
  • those who make a $1,000 leadership gift will be recognized with a special commemorative belt buckle.

Finally, From all our Scouts in the Boy Scouts of America, Alamo Area Council…THANK YOU.

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