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#1 smoortgat

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Posted 23 May 2013 - 12:02 AM

I am a single father of a Junior Scout in the Los Angeles area. I brought my daughter to scouting because I had such a positive experience as a Cub, Weebalo then Scout and I wanted my daughter to have a similar experience as I did. Now my daughter and I spend a great deal of time outdoors together fishing,camping etc. And I do Outdoor cooking demonstrations so I think it is probably safe to say we are the most experienced in the troop. Our troop does very little in the way of activities that my daughter finds interesting. The last event was a sleepover in the mall ( I know. but remember this is LA) . And the summer camp that they have been building up to looks like nothing more than another sleepover They go up to the mountains to cut out pictures in a magazine no swimming no hiking. It doesn't look like they do anything that is normally associated with going to camp. I got frustrated so I signed up to be a volunteer for the troop and took the GS outdoor training program which was by the way was taught by Boy scout leaders. One thing seems to be becoming very clear; The Girl Scouts are not the Boy Scouts! Ive noticed that the Boy Scouts are about becoming men and embracing and overcoming challenges. The Girl Scouts seem to be fixated on reasons that girls cant do things. Don't get me wrong I am not trying to make this a boy vs girl argument! On the contrary, I am a father of a girl and I am appalled by this attitude. I don't want anybody telling my daughter she can't do anything because she is a girl. My efforts to assist the troop set up a camp out that the Girls will find fun and educational and reasonably priced is meeting with resistance. At this point I am wondering why I even bother. I have two questions. First does anybody know of a troop in the San Fernando Valley that is active or should I be looking into Indian Guides or another program? Is the previously described attitude indicative of the Girl Scouts as a whole or is it just in Los Angeles. What do you you think I should do ?
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#2 jc2008

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Posted 23 May 2013 - 02:16 AM

In another couple of years she can join a Venture Crew? Sorry I know that doesn't help you right now.
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#3 qwazse

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Posted 23 May 2013 - 04:52 AM

This breaks my heart on so many levels, I can't stand it. My wife and I endured a similar disheartening experience with our daughter. There were only a couple GS troop's who camped, and they were full! (Or they thought they were. I've never seen a BSA unit where there wasn't room for one more.) Our solution: 1. camp with the kids on family vacations, and 2. send them to a church camp which included a pool, a paddock, several field sports areas and lots of folks singing 'bout Jesus. In both of those situations we usually partnered with another family we knew who had kids our age. Other things to consider: Campfire USA. Turns out my aunt is one of the oldest living Campfire girls, and her experience with them as a child in the depression era (camping under canvas all summer) is part of what motivated me to become a crew advisor. American Heritage Girls: looks good on paper, very BSA-like (a little more Jesus than your average pack, but reports from non-Christian participants are coming back generally positive.) I do hope you can push your GS troop a little. It will be good for all of those girls. But of you're getting push-back, it may be time to find something that meets the goals you have for your daughter.
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#4 Basementdweller

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Posted 23 May 2013 - 06:23 AM

At least they let you sign up.....Our GS council would not let a man run a troop....So my daughter tags along with the Pack and Troop.... We experience some pretty significant discrimination from the local girl scout units. Too young too old, wrong school, wrong neighborhood, just short of wrong color.... I do not like the AHG, there have been a few reports of them Bullying their way into events that were closed because it was at capacity by using that mutual support letter.......
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#5 King Ding Dong

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Posted 23 May 2013 - 06:55 AM

At least they let you sign up.....Our GS council would not let a man run a troop....So my daughter tags along with the Pack and Troop....

We experience some pretty significant discrimination from the local girl scout units. Too young too old, wrong school, wrong neighborhood, just short of wrong color....

I do not like the AHG, there have been a few reports of them Bullying their way into events that were closed because it was at capacity by using that mutual support letter.......


I get tagging along with the pack on outings but how does that work with the troop? I thought that was a big no, no. Screams of "this ain't Webelos III" and "this ain't family camping" and such. Does summer camp allow it also?
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#6 qwazse

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Posted 23 May 2013 - 10:25 AM

At least they let you sign up.....Our GS council would not let a man run a troop....So my daughter tags along with the Pack and Troop....

We experience some pretty significant discrimination from the local girl scout units. Too young too old, wrong school, wrong neighborhood, just short of wrong color....

I do not like the AHG, there have been a few reports of them Bullying their way into events that were closed because it was at capacity by using that mutual support letter.......


KDD, right you are. This is a problem. Tagging along with the troop is inappropriate. Sure, you can host a family camping weekend or two, but I think it has the potential to just remind a girl that "she's not one of us." Until the young lady can actually be part of a patrol, and follow the tracks that we've laid out for the boys, we're just playing a "separate-but-equal" game poorly.

But, if my boys and the adults in the Troop had been willing to get over their hang-ups to welcome my daughter into the big woods -- even if POR's and rank advancement was not in the offering, I would have jumped on the chance just like BD did. As it stands, last night I was explaining the patrol method to a 19 year-old lady who could have experienced it first-hand.
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#7 Basementdweller

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Posted 23 May 2013 - 01:46 PM

At least they let you sign up.....Our GS council would not let a man run a troop....So my daughter tags along with the Pack and Troop....

We experience some pretty significant discrimination from the local girl scout units. Too young too old, wrong school, wrong neighborhood, just short of wrong color....

I do not like the AHG, there have been a few reports of them Bullying their way into events that were closed because it was at capacity by using that mutual support letter.......


Let me see my parents are dead. Wifes parents live 600 miles away...Sometimes my wife is my second adult for outings.....Daughter comes along because she has too, She is 11 and can't spend the weekend home alone.

I am not doing anything off hand, she doesn't run with the boys....but she and mom participate in the activities.....

At 11 she is tougher than any member of the troop.
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#8 blw2

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Posted 23 May 2013 - 02:23 PM

As an active cub scout dad with a rising Kindergarten aged girl and her 2 year old little sister.... I find this an interesting thread. I've ben in contact with our CO's GS leader a few times re. recruitment efforts in the parish. haven't met her, just email and a couple phone calls. My last call to her was to get info. to sign up my daughter in the daisy program next year. She asked if my wife would be interested in leading a daisy 'den' or whatever they call it, since they don't have any active girls that age.... Noticed that she conspicuously didn't ask my availability for leadership.... hum, strike 1. (I didn't push it, figured that's a question for a different day...) Asked about camping, and they don't really. Sleep overs at MOSH, stuff like that..... strike 2. I've heard things about GS ties to planned parenthood and such..... Big strike 3. ..... and based on my recent observations of no uniform and no coherent identity or focus, I'm not thinking too highly of the program. ... but I want Cub Scouts for my daughter so I'll continue to try and see how it goes for now.... I really wish that BSA would structure the program to have Girl dens in the pack, and come up with something that would work on the troop level..... I can see the need for it to not be co-ed, but maybe parallel troops that come together occasionally??? Whatever it is, this to me seems like so much more of an issue that needs attention, than the big hubbub about gays. Worried about recruitment and headcounts BSA? You are missing a huge market potential!!!
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#9 Basementdweller

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Posted 23 May 2013 - 02:41 PM

blw2, your scouts aren't old enough yet..........but boys absolutely positively lose their minds when girls are around. My normally in control SPL, turns into a hormone raging lunatic... I don't know if the US male way of treating women or what it is.. I simply don't know, and the way some of the teen age girls dress, goodness gracious...... I don't profess to have an answer.... blw....here is a suggestion, we experimented with it in the Pack....We ran a BPSA den in our Pack for the Girls, making an effective sib den.... The problem is with folks to run it......BPSA it is more important than in the BSA to have scout skills...... I refused to let her run the cub scouty crafty crap and award them Cub scout ranks......just not right in my book...... so in a short period the experiment failed. The gal was registered as a den leader with the Pack so background checks and stuff were done......
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#10 King Ding Dong

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Posted 23 May 2013 - 02:50 PM

As an active cub scout dad with a rising Kindergarten aged girl and her 2 year old little sister.... I find this an interesting thread.

I've ben in contact with our CO's GS leader a few times re. recruitment efforts in the parish. haven't met her, just email and a couple phone calls. My last call to her was to get info. to sign up my daughter in the daisy program next year. She asked if my wife would be interested in leading a daisy 'den' or whatever they call it, since they don't have any active girls that age.... Noticed that she conspicuously didn't ask my availability for leadership.... hum, strike 1. (I didn't push it, figured that's a question for a different day...)

Asked about camping, and they don't really. Sleep overs at MOSH, stuff like that..... strike 2.

I've heard things about GS ties to planned parenthood and such..... Big strike 3.

..... and based on my recent observations of no uniform and no coherent identity or focus, I'm not thinking too highly of the program.
... but I want Cub Scouts for my daughter so I'll continue to try and see how it goes for now....


I really wish that BSA would structure the program to have Girl dens in the pack, and come up with something that would work on the troop level..... I can see the need for it to not be co-ed, but maybe parallel troops that come together occasionally???
Whatever it is, this to me seems like so much more of an issue that needs attention, than the big hubbub about gays.
Worried about recruitment and headcounts BSA? You are missing a huge market potential!!!

Strike 3 is jumping the shark. I bet you got that from Fox and Friends, Drudge or 700 Club. I think what happened is some pamphlet got put in a goody bag at an event a troop visited and the mountain out of molehill folks turned it into some double secret alliance.

Other observations are valid. You may get to be an assistant but not a leader. (They view men as evil creatures, like the BSA does gays). They are selling off primitive camps so they can build modern ones with climate controlled cabins, WIFI, lots of concrete and vats of glitter glue. Like Sandels Resorts.

BSA accepting girls in cubs or scouts would be viewed as a hostile attack upon GSUSA, not likely in the near future and a PR disaster. Big bad BSA taking away our cookies. That said some packs go rouge and let in girls. There is that 11-13 donut hole. Except if you join BD's troop.
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#11 ParkMan

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Posted 23 May 2013 - 03:11 PM

The GS program has the flexibility to allow for what you are describing you want. I've seen it in action. In fact, I think the GS program done well can challenge young girls as much as, if not more, than the CS program can. My suggestion, find a couple of female adults and start a troop together. In the GS system, you need at least a female co-leader. Once you get that Troop running, follow the GS program, just operate it similar to a CS pack or BS troop. You'll wear different uniforms, have different badges, etc..., but the fundamental goals can be pretty much the same. The interaction of girls vs. boys will be a bit different (girls like to sing more), but beyond that it doesn't need to be all that different.
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#12 smoortgat

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Posted 23 May 2013 - 05:49 PM

I can understand the point that they would like to keep Female Leaders. Personally I feel that any male that takes on the role of a leader of a Girl Scout troop is taking a HUGE risk to himself and his family. Especially here in California where paranoia is a way of life. No thank you not my idea of fun! I am appalled at the attitude of the women and the leadership of my troop and most of the troops we have visited. Mothers do you really want to instill upon your daughters that girls are fragile and can't fend for yourself and that the only place for girls is the mall and sleepovers? Come on. Do you remember the struggle that women had to go through to get where they are. Now they want to throw it away. Isn't that reverse sexism? My 10 year old daughter can camp cook better that most Boy Scouts. she swims, shoots, hikes, backpacks she has even done rock climbing. She can start a campfire using flint and on and on . When I went to the Girl Scout camp training they didn't even want them to have pocket knives. I was aghast!! And the mothers just sat there agreeing.. Really!? Back to my original question does anybody know of a girl program in the San Fernando valley area ( Los Angeles) that does real scouting types of activities. I know I can take her camping myself and I do. But after my divorce my daughter needs to be with girls her age. I want to support her and Ill do what I can.
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#13 smoortgat

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Posted 23 May 2013 - 10:26 PM

Do any of you have any experience with Indian Guides? I met a few parents and they seem to really like it. IG seems a lot less formal than scouting and I really like that there is no cookie sales.I understand it being a GS tradition but there is some very obvious exploitation aspects to it. Anyway, Indian guides is coed and I am not sure how I feel about it. I do like the fact that fathers are not oly welcome to participate but are encouraged to do so. I feel kind of guilty about removing her from Girl Scouts I am a Eagle Scout myself and really want her to benefit from scouting like I did and especially the female element of the troop. That said I am the only participant father in her troop and the obvious discomfort that I sense from the mothers when I attend the meetings. Does cause me some discomfort. However I am a outspoken person and I do feel that I am winning the mothers over little by little. A lot of attention is placed on single mothers. Try being a single father of a young girl.
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#14 jasper18

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Posted 24 May 2013 - 07:13 AM

My daughter is a Daisy bridging to Brownies in a multi-level troop that has 90 girls up to 8th grade. It is organized somewhat like a cub scout pack with a troop executive and patrol leaders below. The patrols are all age-specific like cub scout dens. The troop of 90 does meetings together once a month for court of awards and fun activities. The other meetings are at the patrol level. We do camp as a group once a year and as patrols separately. We hike and camp in the patrols - and we do lock-in type things in malls sometimes, too. The girls drive a lot of what they want to do. My Daisies wanted to learn to sew so we did. But we also did a first indoor camping experience in a gym-like space and we will go camping as a patrol next year as Brownies. We have men who are leaders, but they have to have a female leader with them as well - which is fine since we always need two leaders anyway. It can be done. I will say though that we have a waiting list that is quite long for girls who did not start as Daisies. It is hard to find good scouting experiences for girls.
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#15 King Ding Dong

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Posted 24 May 2013 - 08:54 AM

Do any of you have any experience with Indian Guides? I met a few parents and they seem to really like it. IG seems a lot less formal than scouting and I really like that there is no cookie sales.I understand it being a GS tradition but there is some very obvious exploitation aspects to it. Anyway, Indian guides is coed and I am not sure how I feel about it. I do like the fact that fathers are not oly welcome to participate but are encouraged to do so. I feel kind of guilty about removing her from Girl Scouts I am a Eagle Scout myself and really want her to benefit from scouting like I did and especially the female element of the troop. That said I am the only participant father in her troop and the obvious discomfort that I sense from the mothers when I attend the meetings. Does cause me some discomfort. However I am a outspoken person and I do feel that I am winning the mothers over little by little. A lot of attention is placed on single mothers. Try being a single father of a young girl.

The exploitation aspects of cookie sales are not obvious to me. I love GS Cookies. Who is getting exploited? Me the fat middle aged guy who can't resist a glass of milk and a whole box of peanut butter patties, thus shortening my life by another week ?

I can't imagine being the father of a girl period. Single or married. Especially in LA.

I can think of one very real problem you are going to have camping. Something not talked about enough is the need to do a full body check for ticks after returning from a campout. When we get back we all strip in the foyer, toss all the clothes in a tub and mom checks all over. There are places on your body you just can't view yourself well. Not an issue with a Mom doing that to her son, but a father doing that to a preteen to teen daughter? Many would take issue with it, even though it is a health and safety issue. I suspect you are going to need to invest in some mirrors.
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#16 smoortgat

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Posted 24 May 2013 - 12:04 PM

Do any of you have any experience with Indian Guides? I met a few parents and they seem to really like it. IG seems a lot less formal than scouting and I really like that there is no cookie sales.I understand it being a GS tradition but there is some very obvious exploitation aspects to it. Anyway, Indian guides is coed and I am not sure how I feel about it. I do like the fact that fathers are not oly welcome to participate but are encouraged to do so. I feel kind of guilty about removing her from Girl Scouts I am a Eagle Scout myself and really want her to benefit from scouting like I did and especially the female element of the troop. That said I am the only participant father in her troop and the obvious discomfort that I sense from the mothers when I attend the meetings. Does cause me some discomfort. However I am a outspoken person and I do feel that I am winning the mothers over little by little. A lot of attention is placed on single mothers. Try being a single father of a young girl.

The exploration aspects comes from the back end of the cookie sales. And the pressure put on the girls by troop, leaders, peers and counsel. Eating the cookies are not the problem. As far as inspecting for tick and other aspects I have always taught the kids that I have camped with to inspect each other nightly before changing before bed and unrolling their sleeping bag. What I was talking about is the epidemic of false allegations by young girls. Just the mere suggestion of something inappropriate happening even it is proven to be untrue will ruin a man and his family's life. IE: Guilty by suspicion. That is a risk that I am unwilling to take. I will gladly teach outdoor cooking classes and camping skill class or any other class that I am skilled in. But I am unwilling to become a leader and face the possibility of a angry girl making taking out her frustration on me and having to face public opinion of male lead Girl scout troop.
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#17 smoortgat

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Posted 24 May 2013 - 12:06 PM

My daughter is a Daisy bridging to Brownies in a multi-level troop that has 90 girls up to 8th grade. It is organized somewhat like a cub scout pack with a troop executive and patrol leaders below. The patrols are all age-specific like cub scout dens. The troop of 90 does meetings together once a month for court of awards and fun activities. The other meetings are at the patrol level. We do camp as a group once a year and as patrols separately. We hike and camp in the patrols - and we do lock-in type things in malls sometimes, too. The girls drive a lot of what they want to do. My Daisies wanted to learn to sew so we did. But we also did a first indoor camping experience in a gym-like space and we will go camping as a patrol next year as Brownies. We have men who are leaders, but they have to have a female leader with them as well - which is fine since we always need two leaders anyway. It can be done. I will say though that we have a waiting list that is quite long for girls who did not start as Daisies. It is hard to find good scouting experiences for girls.

Is your troop here in LA
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#18 blw2

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Posted 24 May 2013 - 12:46 PM

As an active cub scout dad with a rising Kindergarten aged girl and her 2 year old little sister.... I find this an interesting thread.

I've ben in contact with our CO's GS leader a few times re. recruitment efforts in the parish. haven't met her, just email and a couple phone calls. My last call to her was to get info. to sign up my daughter in the daisy program next year. She asked if my wife would be interested in leading a daisy 'den' or whatever they call it, since they don't have any active girls that age.... Noticed that she conspicuously didn't ask my availability for leadership.... hum, strike 1. (I didn't push it, figured that's a question for a different day...)

Asked about camping, and they don't really. Sleep overs at MOSH, stuff like that..... strike 2.

I've heard things about GS ties to planned parenthood and such..... Big strike 3.

..... and based on my recent observations of no uniform and no coherent identity or focus, I'm not thinking too highly of the program.
... but I want Cub Scouts for my daughter so I'll continue to try and see how it goes for now....


I really wish that BSA would structure the program to have Girl dens in the pack, and come up with something that would work on the troop level..... I can see the need for it to not be co-ed, but maybe parallel troops that come together occasionally???
Whatever it is, this to me seems like so much more of an issue that needs attention, than the big hubbub about gays.
Worried about recruitment and headcounts BSA? You are missing a huge market potential!!!

Actually, no King Dong, that's not where I got it from.... but if I had, would it make it any less legitimate?
The thing is, Drudge just collects headlines. he doesn't write the stories and he sure doesn't make the news.
Fox and Friends, while I haven't seen it in year, isn't any different that any other talking heads static show..... just conservative folks instead of liberal....
and the 700 Club????/ Man, is that still around? Not even exactly sure what that was.

I have no idea actually, where I first heard this.... but 10 seconds with google, and here's a clip of a CEO of GSA (or maybe she's former CEO, I have no idea....
http://www.speaknowg...hood-Connection
Not exactly a criminal addition, but there is no doubt that they have a partnership. now how much of the story that they give money to them is true, I don't really know...... and really, that doesn't matter.....
it's the black mark against them that I'm writing of.....
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#19 blw2

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Posted 24 May 2013 - 12:50 PM

blw2, your scouts aren't old enough yet..........but boys absolutely positively lose their minds when girls are around. My normally in control SPL, turns into a hormone raging lunatic...

I don't know if the US male way of treating women or what it is.. I simply don't know, and the way some of the teen age girls dress, goodness gracious......

I don't profess to have an answer....

blw....here is a suggestion, we experimented with it in the Pack....We ran a BPSA den in our Pack for the Girls, making an effective sib den.... The problem is with folks to run it......BPSA it is more important than in the BSA to have scout skills...... I refused to let her run the cub scouty crafty crap and award them Cub scout ranks......just not right in my book...... so in a short period the experiment failed. The gal was registered as a den leader with the Pack so background checks and stuff were done......


Yeah, Cubs for sure aren't old enough.... but I see what you mean. That's why I think it needs to be separate. For me it's really about the program being offered for girls.... with maybe some come together for family trips that we do together anyway in cubs. Too bad your experiment failed. Seems like a good potential solution on the cub level anyway..... But to work, I think it would have to be more official and on-book.
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#20 qwazse

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Posted 25 May 2013 - 05:04 PM

Do any of you have any experience with Indian Guides? I met a few parents and they seem to really like it. IG seems a lot less formal than scouting and I really like that there is no cookie sales.I understand it being a GS tradition but there is some very obvious exploitation aspects to it. Anyway, Indian guides is coed and I am not sure how I feel about it. I do like the fact that fathers are not oly welcome to participate but are encouraged to do so. I feel kind of guilty about removing her from Girl Scouts I am a Eagle Scout myself and really want her to benefit from scouting like I did and especially the female element of the troop. That said I am the only participant father in her troop and the obvious discomfort that I sense from the mothers when I attend the meetings. Does cause me some discomfort. However I am a outspoken person and I do feel that I am winning the mothers over little by little. A lot of attention is placed on single mothers. Try being a single father of a young girl.

I don't envy challenges facing you as a single dad. I know how much work it is to earn moms' trust when their HS girls want to join my crew. Sometimes there is just nothing you can do. (And I have a seasoned GS mom as a co-advisor.) One boy in my crew had fond memories of IG, so I think I'd look into it if I were in your position. If a couple of GS mom's are willing to step out and form a troop that emphasizes the out-of-doors, I would encourage you to step forward. Let them know that your success depends on them, and try to plan a couple weekends under canvas in the next six months.
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