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Help with a policy for my SpiralScout group

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  • Help with a policy for my SpiralScout group

    I need advice. We have a good sized SpiralScout group which consists of 4 separate Hearths. Each Hearth has it’s own leaders, scouts, meeting times, etc. We share fundraising, seasonal get togethers, campouts, and volunteer staff. I am the “outreach coordinator” and keeper of the waiting list. We have like 20 kids on the waiting list. When leaders need more kids they look at the waiting list for a best match based usually on age, gender balance and sometimes common interest (maybe another homeschool kid). So it’s not necessarily based on how long you’ve been on the list.

    Here is the issue. Lately when a leader needs to add a child and offers the spot to a family… The family declines. Usually it’s a schedule thing, sometimes it’s distance/transportation issues. Sometimes they indicate they are “just too busy” for scouts right now and will check it out next year.

    When I get this feedback from the Leaders I have been removing the scouts from the waiting list. I mean if they are offered a spot and decline – why should they be on the waiting list?

    But I am not sure if this is fair, given some meet on weekends and others on weekdays. Just because one Hearth wasn’t a good match, maybe another one will be. I mean if they get offered spots and keep declining due to scheduling – the spot will just be offered to someone else. I guess it’s not hurting anyone if they stay on the list. Except that the list just keeps growing… which is so daunting! Hopefully we get additional Leaders/Hearths soon.

    I took over this job last October. At that time I checked in with the current list and really cleaned it up. Mostly bounced back emails/unanswered phones. I was thinking of checking in again this October. Is once a year not enough?

    Any advice on keeping things not complicated (this is volunteer work ya know) but fair? It would be nice to have a policy of sorts.



    Attached Mama to Brendan, born 11/18/03. Loving Wife to Dennis, handfasted 9/7/02.

  • #2
    It seems like you (or the appropriate leaders) could ask a couple of simple questions when you contact them.

    "Are you interested right now?"

    (if yes, then go on from there with the details. If no, then...)

    "Would you like to be kept on the waiting list if other slots open up? Some of our other groups meet at different times and in different locations?"

    They get to say yes or no - if they're too busy for *any* group, they can say so.

    If yes, you stick them back on the waiting list, maybe with a note about who'd asked them or anything they said that's relevant. If no, then you can ask them to check in with you if they change their minds, but you won't contact them again, or whatever.