Boy Scouts doing fine

People constantly ask me in my job, “How are the Boy Scouts doing?”

Most of the time people seem to expect a negative answer to their question.

They expect to hear that we have declining numbers and that Scouting is not making headway in our communities.

I wanted to share with you some of the Shelby County successes the Boy Scouts have had for 2008.

-There are over 2,000 Scouts in 59 Boy Scout packs, troops and crews, which is a 5 percent growth from last year.

-More than 620 Cub Scouts in September attended the Hooked on Scouting Fishing Event at Oak Mountain State Park.

-No child was turned away from any Scouting activities, in spite of economic difficulties.

-Scouts gave thousands of hours of community service to help other people and make our communities and schools better.

-Scouts collected over 22,000 cans of food for the Salvation Army, which is 12,000 more than last year.

-We have more than 50 Eagle Scouts.

-We trained 200 new leaders.

-More than 440 Cub Scouts attended Day Camp in June at Oak Mountain State Park.

-More than 300 Boy Scouts are attending Summer Camp this year.

These achievements could not have been possible without the support of our community, civic and business leaders, and volunteers.

During this climate of uncertainty, it sometimes is very hard to find anything positive going on in our world, country, and communities.

People look for things they can depend on and know will be there for them.

I am very excited about what the Boy Scouts and Scouting programs are doing in Shelby County and what we will continue to do to help our neighbors and communities.

So, if you ask, “How are the Boy Scouts doing?” the answer is, “Great, and the best is yet to come.”

Clay Pruitt is the Shelby District Executive of the Greater Alabama Council of Boy Scouts.