My daughter Katherine has joined the Boy Scouts of America. Yes, that is right, the Boy Scouts of America. She is a 17-year-old girl and joined a Venture Crew, a shooting focused unit. She now has a FOID (Firearms Owner Identification) card, is (somewhat) trained to shoot and has an attitude.
Actually, it is a very sweet attitude. After years of my suggesting and prodding, Katherine decided to become a scout to attend the the 23rd World Scout Jamboree in Japan this summer. She is signed up and going as a Venture Scout, a type of scout that is a boy or girl over 14 and less than 21 years old. She wants to travel the world and meet people from different countries, and this is a great opportunity to do just that.
Katherine is already an accomplished camper, having been on many Boy Scout weekend campouts as a young girl when my wife worked and I had the kids. She also picked up a lot from just being around a scoutmaster father, Eagle Scout brother, and pesky little (scout) brother.
While I am a proud father, this story is also about three other young men from my Boy Scout troop headed to the Japan event. I pledged to help these three outstanding young men with the $5,750 cost for each to attend the event at Kirara-hama, Yamaguchi, Japan. So far I have helped raise $10,000 of the $15,000 I pledged. I could use some more help with the rest, but I will get to that.
Let me tell you about the boys you would be helping. Tony Buscaglia, Owen Rehling and D.J. Cooke are all Life Scouts, and all have completed their Eagle projects and are finishing up the last merit badges and paperwork to earn the Eagle rank.
Tony’s Eagle project was to help hundreds of trees grow in a city park by distributing hundreds of pounds of mulch. Owen organized a painting project for his church, painting the basement and adjoining rooms for the first time in decades. D.J. had the most original project, organizing the building and placement of a bee box in a city park, which helped native bees find a home.
Each of these young men have become leaders as they progressed through the ranks. D.J. served as a senior patrol leader as a freshman. Owen has also had a turn as senior patrol leader and Tony served them and Robby as an assistant senior patrol leader. Yes, my 8th grade son Robby is the senior patrol leader of this boy-led troop.
These three boys and my son Robby attended the National Jamboree in West Virginia in 2013. They want to put the finishing touch on their youth scouting careers by attending this international gathering of Boy Scouts. Tony told me this will be “an unforgettable experience.” Robby declined to attend this Jamboree, wanting to focus on preparations for high school, which starts right after they all return.
D.J. told me he “made life-long friendships with people both in my Jambo troop and all across the United States” and how much the enjoys learning about other people’s cultures.
Owen said that as he is reaching the end of his scouting career he wants to experience as much as Scouting has to offer by interacting with scouts around the world. He also said he is looking forward to learning about Japanese culture and participating in the events that have been planned.
All three have pledged to give back to others, as they have been generously helped through their scouting careers.
These young men need some help to make their dream a reality. Would you be willing to help by making a donation to our troop’s scholarship fund, which will go directly to offsetting their costs? If you are interested in helping, email me at [[mailto:firstname.lastname@example.orgemail@example.com]] for the details.
As for my daughter Katherine, she will just have to depend on the kindness of her father and the fruits of her own hard work to get to Japan and back. It is perhaps some of the best money I will ever spend, making her scouting journey a reality.