Last year in recruitment, we were late in starting to plan due to the administrative state of the district. Now we are starting planning for the August 2016 recruitment campaign. We need your help quickly.
District Vice-Chair for Membership Sharla Merrick and District Executive Con Sullivan are working hard right now to develop a detailed district recruitment plan to support your units‘ recruitment plans.
Part of this planning requires gathering data. Since we are a large group of talented and dedicated scouters with different perspectives, we are hoping to pool information about recruitment opportunities. We think you have the data. Let me illustrate what we are trying to do.
For example, last year, Con Sullivan reached out to his one of his counterparts in Girl Scouts of Central Indiana Tashianna Avery to discuss her recruitment efforts. (Tashianna has worked with Con and me on several projects and has become a valued colleague.) Tashianna shared with Con several of the community events that she was participating in and invited North Star District to come alongside. One of these was the St Luke’s United Methodist Church Backpack Attack. As a result of networking with Tashianna, we gathered a list of over 50 prospective members of North Star District.
While we did not do a good job of converting these prospects last year, we know that we can develop prospect lists easily at community events. In fact the BSA literature on recruitment emphasizes the importance of these types of events for exposure to the community, relationship building, and identifying prospects. It can serve as more than one of the necessary “7 Contacts” to recruit a new scout.
Sharla and Con want to build on this lesson learned. We would like to find as many events in the communities surrounding our units as possible. Then we will prioritize the events with the greatest likelihood of helping us develop prospect lists and community relationships.
Some of these events will naturally staffed by the home unit. For example, Pack 35 and Troop 35 at St Joan of Arc Catholic will naturally want to staff their parish’s French Market in September, if there is a booth there. Even so, we would like to have it on the district list to help develop a district-wide view of recruiting. The hope is we will minimize the number of good opportunities to make scouting connections.
If you have community events, please contact Sharla Merrick or Con Sullivan through your Membership Coordinator or Committee Chair.
Also don’t forget the Cook Out on the Circle on June 16th as a way to contribute to a Council-wide marketing effort. Many of your best prospective volunteers or families work downtown. Your unit’s presence can generate surprising results.