There are many official and unofficial website resources to help you do Scouting, and many of them are helpful – but with both “official” and “unofficial” resources, the ancient Latin maxim of “Caveat Scouter” (Scouter beware) applies, as despite best intentions, some material – even on “official” sites – is out of date, or incomplete, or confusing, or conflicts with other pieces.
But, collectively, there is wealth of useful information out there. Here are some links you might want to keep (and feel free to contact us for more that you know of):
Official BSA Links:
- http://www.atlantabsa.org/ is the Atlanta Area Council website, with local contact information for BSA professionals here, Council activities, camping signups, training dates, Youth Protection resources (like if you have an issue arise), and more.
- https://my.scouting.org/ is your personal portal for your information, and the unit, District and Council roles you may hold – key useful parts are the “Member Manager” for identification at any time of “who is on the roster” (or “when an application cleared”), as well as application intake, and “Training Manager” for seeing the status of training and updating as your leaders complete live training.
- https://my.scouting.org/ is also the best “starting” portal for the “BSA Learn Center” where online training may be taken.
- https://scoutingwire.org/ has a plethora of communication and resources for volunteers, employees, parents, and more, including Marketing & Membership resources, brand resources for communication and recruiting, and news.
- https://beascout.scouting.org/ is the online registration portal for new Scouts and Leaders, and is one way to promote your unit, by completing your “pin” with an appealing description and up to date contact information.
- https://www.scouting.org/ has evolved a lot recently, and is (still) somewhat inscrutable as an entry portal (it looks like BeAScout), but if you click the “Menu” in the upper right hand corner, you’ll find some structure, including:
- Scouting Programs Overview at https://www.scouting.org/programs/, but there is yet to be launched a “coming soon” for Scouts BSA.
- Scouting Safely Resources at https://www.scouting.org/health-and-safety/, including the current Guide to Safe Scouting at https://www.scouting.org/health-and-safety/gss/ (remember: the GtSS sometimes has rules, but often has “guides” of what you “should” do, which are not the same as what you “must” do). ‘
- For those who ask “is there a badge for that?” – see the Awards page at https://www.scouting.org/health-and-safety/gss/, because there probably is.
- The Training page at https://www.scouting.org/training/ is super useful, since there are many current syllabi for adult and youth training. And more resources.
- https://www.scouting.org/resources/ has subpages you might like, including:
- Troop Leader Resources at https://troopleader.org/ — useful.
- Troop Program Resources at https://www.programresources.org/ — some seriously great stuff, including videos.
- Scouting Magazine at https://scoutingmagazine.org/
- Boys’ Life Magazine at https://boyslife.org/ (yes, teased in May, 2018 was that in September, 2018 there would be a new name for this magazine, and the early betting was that the name would be “Scouts’ Life” but, uh, that hasn’t happened, so …stay tuned?).
- https://podcast.scouting.org/ has podcasts, including “Scoutcast” for troop leaders.
- https://www.scoutshop.org is the online Scout Shop.
- https://www.scoutbook.com/ is the free (as of 1/1/19) advancement (and more) software that Scouts and units can use, and units can use to report advancement and charter renewal data and more. There is an app for that.
- https://www.scouting.org/training/youth-protection/cyber-chip/ has Cyber Chip resources you’ll want, and that you need for advancement.
- https://blog.scoutingmagazine.org has a daily update that you can register for, and it may pay off in $$ like with this blog about deducting Scouting expenses from your taxes.
- http://licensingbsa.org/bsa-licensee-list/ has a list of official suppliers licensed by the BSA, so that you can shop for your official licensed bling for your Scouts and Troop.
- https://www.scouting.org/resources/bsa-fit/ has the SCOUTStrong Healthy Living Initiative, which is tool to tire your Scouts and make them fit.
- https://www.scouting.org/familyscouting/ is where the BSA is putting a plethora of Family Scouting resources for many audiences.
Useful Unofficial Links:
- For Family Scouting, here’s some key Facebook sites:
- BSA Family Packs/Girl Troops (this was originally the Cub Scout “early adopter” page, and has much official interaction): https://www.facebook.com/groups/BSAFamilyPacksTroops/
- BSA Family Scouting: https://www.facebook.com/groups/FamilyScoutsBSA/
- BSA Girl Troops: https://www.facebook.com/groups/BSAGIRLTROOPS/
- The Atlanta Area Council group is at: https://www.facebook.com/groups/278546589455397/
- A District Website on Family Scouting is at https://www.southfultonscouting.com/node/3888
- https://scoutmastercg.com/ is a posts and podcasts project curated by Clarke Green, a Scouter willing to share opinions that ring true.
- http://usscouts.org/usscouts/mb/mbbooks.asp is part of the U.S. Scouting Service Project at http://usscouts.org/usscouts/, which is an enormous resource for all parts of Scouting. Not all parts are current, but there’s lots of great resources here.
- http://scoutmaster.org/ is also hosted on that USSSP site, with enormous resources.
- http://meritbadge.org/wiki/index.php/Main_Page is another online site with a plethora of advancement resources, most widely known for Merit Badge “worksheets”, which can be a useful tool for Scouts working on a badge, but should not be a substitute for counseling and testing of the Scout by seeing the Scout “do” and “show” and “tell” what the badge requires.
- https://www.animatedknots.com/ by Grog is a super cool site. Comes with an app too.
- http://www.macscouter.com/ has lots of program resources, now archived at the USSSP site.
- https://www.scouter.com/ has a variety of forums with a variety of quality and like all online forums a variety of trolls, but you can find good ideas there. So too http://scouts-l.org/, which has some really great posts, but also some epic trolling.
- http://www.meritbadge.info/index.html has a list of Merit Badge Events, some of which are great, some of which are not – Merit Badges should be earned by completing all of the requirements and being tested by the Counselor, so beware programs that “credit” for completion simply because the Scout drew breath for he duration of a class! (Same goes for summer camp instruction, by the way).
To find more, see https://www.google.com and search away.