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Back to Pack Concept and Planning
The “Back to Pack” Concept
Each fall, Cub Scout Packs get a “fresh start” as they welcome in brand new Scouts through Fall Recruitment. New Cubs join the packs, new dens are formed, and literally new life comes to each Pack.
Somewhere amidst all the hustle and bustle of join nights, many returning families do not get contacted to come back and an essential opportunity is missed. As a result, youth are lost along with potential leadership from their parents. The “Back to the Pack” concept is an effort to get all returning Cub Scouts and their parents reengaged before recharter and recruitment begins, filling both dens and leadership vacancies.
In order to make sure that every Scout knows that the new year of Scouting is about to start and that every family is expected to play an active roll, it is recommended that each Pack hold a “Back to Pack” event. With this event, the pack has the opportunity to set a new tone of full family engagement and volunteering.
Across the Nation, the best Packs conduct “Back to the Pack” events in the month of July. It is important to remember, this is an internal event for existing members. The purpose of the meeting will be to get old members signed up for the upcoming Scouting year, recruit leadership to fill vacancies (whether it be for Cubmaster, Assistant Cubmaster, Den Leader, Committee Member, or the treat provider at a pack meeting), and to share plans for this year’s pack activities.
We encourage you to make this a fun event for the entire family. Suggested activities include: an ice cream social, watermelon feast, pool party, carnival sports, etc. The meeting is designed to make sure that your pack is ready for recharter and organized prior to receiving new Scouts and parents the following month.
Each Cub Scout Pack should personally contact all members, preferably by telephone, to get a commitment for their attendance. Research has shown many will not continue without being personally contacted. In other words, in their minds, they have only taken a vacation during the summer and are waiting to be contacted about when to start attending the meeting again.
Remember: in June, all Cub Scouts should be contacted about the “Back to the Pack” and encouraged to become active Cub Scouts again for the fall. Be sure to share that parents/guardians are expected to attend as well.
As each unit shares their Back to Pack information with the council (date, time, and location), the Grand Canyon Council will send a personal invitation postcard to each returning family. It is critical that each Pack notify their District Executive no less than three weeks prior to the event for Postcards to go out.
Cub Scouts leaders are experts at putting on fun activities for youth but for this event, we should make a few special preparations.
- First, have an annual calendar sharing the key activities and events for the Pack this upcoming year.
- Second, know your leadership vacancies and have a leadership chart with blanks showing where every family will have a responsibility, small or large, with the pack.
- Third, be prepared to collect membership dues in a way that is effective and easy for your families.
Setting Up Your Back to Pack
While some units conduct their Back to Pack with a formal meeting, we recommend you take an informal approach by conducting the activity with 4 tables/stops at the entrance, guiding families to visit each as they arrive. Each of the 3 tables or stops have a very specific purpose with a recommended leader.
- Welcome, meet the Cubmaster, and receive the Pack calendar and a local events sheet.
- Meet the Committee Chair, review the leadership sheet, and sign-up to help.
- Sign-up and Pay Dues, and Receive Unit SWAG with the Treasurer or Committee Member.