The Council Concept
Scouting has been organized with the conviction that men and women in many communities can and will work together in serving youth through the program of Scouting.
The mainspring of the council idea is the willingness of organizations and leading citizens within a given area to cooperate in serving youth through Scouting. The council is not an association of communities or of people representing communities. Rather, it is an association of chartered organizations with the addition of men and women who are interested in all youth in the council area. It is incorporated within the territory covered by the charter to fulfill the purposes of the Boy Scouts of America.
Representation of All Interests and Sections
The movement is democratic and gains strength insofar as the men and women who direct it are carefully chosen to represent the various segments of community life.
The first of these are the chartered organization representatives who speak for the organizations that have already undertaken the operation of units. The second group is composed of the members at large who reflect the thinking of every section of the area—the religious groups; cultural groups; and civic, veterans’, fraternal, educational, agricultural, industrial, and labor groups. The council membership is, in essence, a cross section of the citizenry of the area—the volunteers banded together in a joint enterprise to serve youth.
Responsibility to Serve All Sections of the Territory
The principles of intercommunity cooperation within a council, and representation of all major area interests, carry with them a commitment to serve all sections of the total area of the council. The council is in part an association of organizations using the Scouting program, but it’s more than that.
The Principle of Volunteer Responsibility With Professional Guidance
The policy of maintaining Scouting as a volunteer movement finds full expression in the organization and operation of the council. Its members, officers, executive board, and committees are all volunteers, with the exception of the Scout executive. Within the limits of national policy, these volunteers carry responsibility for formulating and executing the plans necessary to promote Scouting in the area. They determine membership objectives, budgets, camp facilities and programs, leadership training programs, professional staff needs, and other matters of local council operation. Scouting in the council prospers in proportion to the stature, vision, and enthusiasm of the volunteers who plan and carry out the local program.
Professionals serve as coaches and coordinators. They provide the administrative guidance that shapes
the work of many volunteers into a coordinated, efficient pattern to get the greatest results from the volunteers’ investment of time and effort. They serve as advisers to officers and committees. They know
and pass on to the volunteers the skills and techniques of youth leadership, fund development campaigns, leadership training methods, camp development, and the many other functions of a council. They are familiar with Scouting literature and, through conferences and professional training, keep abreast of new procedures and methods for carrying out Scouting.
The Council as a Functioning Body
Effective work on the part of the volunteers who make up the council calls for an organization that clearly fixes responsibility and communicates to its Scouters and the general public. Volunteers should expect to be supported in their efforts with position descriptions, calendar of events, suggested work schedules, and other references.