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Scouting, service go together

By John Barden

Special to the Post

For well over a century, Scouting has and continues to be one of the most relevant youth-services organizations in our county, state and nation.

In 2014, our Boy Scouts and Cub Scouts in Rowan County have done so much to make us all proud. Let’s take a look at the numbers behind our success:

In Rowan County, Scouting served 1328 youth and approximately 400 adult volunteers. Of our entire council, Rowan District accounts for approximately 20 percent of our youth and volunteer base. During fall 2014, our School Nights for Scouting campaign increased our membership, primarily in Cub Scouting, by 50 youth from year-to-year. Our School Night team, led by volunteer chair Boni Lowry, went to our local elementary schools to share the fun and exciting activities we do in Cub Scouting and help families register their boys to join.

Service and Scouting go hand-in-hand. In 2014, our Scouts performed 8,321 service hours, which accounts for 25 percent of all 34,604 service hours performed within our council. As of this writing, we are preparing to embark our annual day of service called Scouting for Food, where our Scouts will go out into our communities to solicit donations for non-perishable food items on Saturday, Jan. 31. Our Scouts will bring paper grocery bags to be filled with food items, then return on Feb. 7 to collect donations. This year, we are partnering with Rowan Helping Ministries, where all our collected food items will be donated to help in their food ministry. We expect this year’s Scouting for Food drive to impact more Rowan County citizens than in previous years.

Rowan County’s Scouting program has a long and proud tradition of producing many Eagle Scouts in the Central N.C. Council. In 2014, 25 of our Boy Scouts earned the Eagle Scout Award, Scouting’s highest honor. Our Eagle Scouts this year make up 21 percent of all Eagle Scouts produced in our council this year.

In addition, 72 Cub Scouts earned the Arrow of Light Award, which is Cub Scouting’s equivalent to the Eagle Scout Award. Approximately 30 percent of our council’s Arrow of Light recipients came from Rowan County.

In the Nov. 28 edition of the Salisbury Post, Mark Wineka introduced us to Zane Pollard, whose bravery and skills learned during his Cub Scout pack meetings enabled him to save his parents and sister during a devastating home fire. Zane’s courage, which earned him the BSA’s Heroism Medal, is definitive proof that Scouting makes a difference.

The Boy Scouts of America has more than one million volunteers working together for the sole purpose of helping its nearly three million youth succeed in life. The Central N.C. Council has eight districts from seven counties: Rowan, Cabarrus, Stanly, Montgomery, Union, Anson and Richmond counties, in the central Piedmont region of North Carolina. The Central N.C. Council is a member agency of the Rowan County United Way.

For additional information about how to join Scouting, please contact John C. Barden, Rowan District executive, at 704-982-0141, Ext. 252 or john.barden@scouting.org

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