Camporee Resource Material - Planning - Organizing - Designing - Training Syllabus - Program Ideas & Much, Much More!
........for a Youth Run Camporee Program
By Scouterdoug aka Doug Reynolds, BSA Volunteer
Our goal is to provide Camporee Resource Material world wide for Boy and Girl Scouting Organizations who wish to coordinate and organize a Youth Run Camporee.
The material is the property of the writer and is made available at no charge for the goal as described, however, the material cannot be published and / or sold without written permisson of the author. We offer...
Easy to learn organizing instructions for Camporees
The program and literature was developed and updated over a 10 year period and is based on the youth run Challenge Trophy Camporees (CTC) in Western NYS. We started in 1999 with 2 subcamps and 50 events and in Oct 2010 we will be running 12 subcamps and 325 events.
The material on this web site was developed and written by Scouterdoug, a scouting volunteer. No scouting professional or non-profit organization was involved in the content or information on this site. The author of the information on this website authorizes the use of the material for non-profit organizations like Boy Scouts of America, Scouts Canada, World Federation of Independent Scouts, Girl Scouts, Guides Canada, etc. The material describes how we coordinate and run the Youth Run Challenge Trophy Camporee series. Adapt the information to meet your district's, Council's, Region's, or any other sponsor's needs.
The website contains great Camporee Resource Material. The content includes manuals, procedures, instructions, training syllabus, team-building material, and much more. A major part of this information is how to coordinate a Youth Run Camporee. Why would you want the youth to run the Camporee? The answer is simple. Scouting is for the youth, not necessarily for the adults. The Camporee program teaches the youth to be leaders. They do not need to already be leaders when they accept the roles.... they will learn to "become leaders" during the Camporee. Staff receives a training program to get them ready for their chosen role. They will begin their leadership journey with self-doubt, nervousness and the fear of failure before the Camporee begins. At the Camporee, the youth will struggle trying to conduct their role while learning leadership skills.
The adult staff provides the safety net to ensure the youth succeed. The adults help without taking over. During the staff training, we teach the adults to GIVE WAY, PROVIDE SUPPORT (only if needed) and GIVE RECOGNITION to the youth for what they accomplish.
After the Camporee, the youth leaders will look back with pride, confidence and a feeling of high esteem and success. They are ready to take on more responsibility next year.
Each year provides a greater challenge for the youth staff. For example,
1st year on Staff – Support staff at a subcamp or event area
2nd year on Staff – Subcamp Chief or Event Area Coordinator
3rd year on Staff -
Option 1) Reverse roles at the 2nd year. I.E. teach them both
Option 2) Become part of the youth Camporee Chief’s leadership support team
4th Year on Staff - Become a youth Camporee Chief
The examples above are not cast in stone. They are a guide only to accelerate understanding of the leadership part of the program.
NYLT (National Youth Leader Training) is an excellent program for the youth to take to help prepare them for the Camporee Leadership roles. It is not a requirement for our Camporee.
What does attending troops get as far as teamwork training is concerned? The program is based on patrols working together to complete as many of the 200 event that they choose to. The subcamp chariot race (Saturday evening) is the ultimate team race where as many as 480 racers complete in a 90-minute period. Included in the (pre-camporee) Leadership Package is a team drill to set up the troop’s campsite using 7 teamwork principles. All cooking is by the youth for the youth. The Campsite Inspection requires a team effort to do well as a troop. There are many more examples, but this provides the reader with the idea.
The entire Camporee structure is based on 7 Teamwork Principles. These principles apply to the Camporee Committee, Staff and to all attending Troops.
2) Common Goal
3) Clearly Defined Roles
4) Wise use of Resources
5) United & Enthusiastic Effort
6) Effective Communication
7) Control of the Ego
Teamwork Principles Overview:
Key Leaders include: Chairperson of the Adult Committee
Leadership is the key to the success of the group. The leader is the individual who gathers opinions, encourages discussion, and ultimately makes the final decision when consensus is not met. Responsibilities include,
1.1) Setting the goal and providing a clear direction for the team. Provide the vision of what the goal is.
1.2) Assigning responsibilities to key personnel (team members) based on individual skills or strengths. This is a good time to develop team member’s skills through learning. They do not have to be the expert, but has the ability to learn and develop.
1.3) Keeping the subgroups, when applicable, focused on their task, and not side tracked. When necessary, resolve conflicts between team members, or subgroups. The tasks and roles in the team members are clearly defined under the Roles section.
1.4) Recognizing successes of team members. Find positive things, not the negative ones. It is easy to find things to complain about…. avoid doing so. For example, instead of saying “this is not good enough”, ask, “how can we improve this?” Recognize success.
1.5) Ensure all the teamwork principles are being used.
1.6) Accountable for the final results.
1.7) Team members must recognize the leader’s role and respond to it rather than resist it. Every team needs a leader, so accept it. Learn to work within the team framework. Leaders who fail to follow teamwork principles will not have a loyal team, as conflicts will develop.
Subgroup Leaders – Adult Committee
1.8) These leaders are responsible for their respective areas and must follow items 1.1 to 1.7 above within their subgroup. A breakdown of possible Subgroups may be found on the resourse page.
Youth Leaders: Adult Committee
If you are able to find a youth with some free time, they should be part of the adult camporee committee. Note that they are primarily there to learn and may have a limited role should they have no previous experience organizing a Camporee. The 2nd year, they can accept a more active role.
Youth Leaders: At the Camporee
All the youth leaders receive teaming prior to the camporee to allow them to “be prepared” for their roles. Refer to the Training web page for additional info. Youth Leader Positions include,
Event Area coordinator
Support Staff (leaders in Training for next year)
2) Work Towards a Common Goal
2.1) The goal is the standard for which the success of the team is defined. What is the team trying to accomplish or build? The overall goal is to design, plan and execute a youth run Camporee.
2.2) The goal must be clearly spelled out. It must also be reasonable and achievable, based on current or potential skill level. You may have to start small and build it larger, consistently in time.
2.3) Sub goals may be assigned to sub groups providing the overall focus is on the common goal. They must be tied to the original goal the team is trying to achieve.
3) Clearly Defining Tasks or Roles of Team Members and Subgroups
3.1) Each and every team member must have a clearly defined role. Not one person should be left without a task at any time... unless it scheduled that way. This includes Adults and Youth. At the Camporee, we provide a Staff Schedule listing a time line for the entire weekend. This gives the youth (and adult) leaders a guideline to follow.
3.2) Where sub groups are used, each sub group must have their tasks and / or roles clearly defined. Each position has a description, manual and procedures where required.
3.3) At times, sub groups may require a leader. Remember that sub groups are not to function alone, but is in fact, part of the larger team. Examples of subgroups may include, parking and traffic control, 1st aid team, camp services (water, port a johns, etc), program (events), Quartermaster , etc. This is discussed below and again in detail at the “Camporee Resource" web page.
3.4) Youth leaders are placed in a position to learn. That is, they must have the opportunity to learn as they perform the selected role.
3.5) A Committee of Volunteers are just that. The Scout Professional assigned to the Event is not "in charge" of the Committee. They are there to provide support where needed and release funds in a timelt manner based on an approved budget. I have worked with ~ 10 different Scouting Professionals over the years and I can advise you that some see their role in a very different manner. Therefore you may have to negotiate the role.
4) Wise Use of Resources
Team members must share all resources. Remember that the team success depends on this. Sub groups are not competing against each other. They must always work towards the common goal.
4.1) Essential Personal Qualities:
Enthusiasm, energy, vision, will, determination, perseverance, dedication, training, experience, willing to learn, knowing where to look for information or materials, etc.
4.2) Physical Resources
Time, event equipment, subcamp equipment, storage and transportation of equipment, Camp grounds and parking lot(s), Camp supplied equipment, 1st aid supplies, port a johns, water supply, Staff (youth, adults), senior youth and adults from attending troops, money, forms, procedures, manuals, etc.
The entire camporee is structured to clearly define the roles of staff and attending troops. This even includes a Team Work Drill for arriving troops on how to unload, transport and setup a troop's campsite as a team using the Team Work Principles.
NOTE: Everyone will have to share the resources with other people.
5) United and Enthusiastic Effort:
5.1) Each individual must give 100% at all times. Be consistent.
5.2) Enthusiasm is another way of saying having fun and enjoying what they are doing.
5.3) An unenthusiastic team may do well, but an enthusiastic team will do much better.
5.4) The leader is important in this area because it is their enthusiasm and ability to set the pace that is vital to the overall success of the team.
5.5) Never give up! Keep on trying. You will succeed!
6) Effective Communication
6.1) Members can communicate by passing information and asking questions. Communicate frequently.
6.2) Communication must be timely and relevant. The leader must determine which is relevant and which is not.
6.3) It must be of value to the activities of the team, sub groups, and the overall goal.
6.4) Where sub groups are concerned, the current status needs to be discussed. Then determine what should be done next. Identify problems and react to correct them.
7) Control of the Ego
The ego is an important element in motivating individuals to excellence and achievement.
Temporary suppression of the ego includes,
7.1) Know when to make suggestions and know when to ask for suggestions. Not one person knows everything!
7.2) Allow other team members to raise a point, an issue, an idea, or an approach, which they may not have otherwise brought forward. Do not be afraid of new ideas. Everyone must have input. Be open-minded and select the best option presented. Maintain a positive attitude towards other team member’s ideas.
7.3) Once the direction has been decided, not everyone will agree however, it is required that those in disagreement suppress their ego for the good of the team.
7.4) Cooperate rather than compete with team members. Do not dominate conversations or try to personally “take over” projects. Remember, you are just part of an overall team.
7.5) Remember that we have to share resources. It is not a contest to see who can get the most!
7.6) Accept constructive criticism as well as praise for ideas or suggestions.
Teamwork Principles Summary:
Refer to the Training Web page and download the Teamwork Principle cards and Leadership Key cards. These will help you on the path to a successful Camporee.
Teamwork principles and leadership skills descriptions and training are discussed in great detail at this web site on other pages. Please continue to read, learn and apply the information while developing a youth run camporee.
Failure of adults to work together as defined in the teamwork principles at this website will make the road to success a little more difficult. Keep reminding yourself and others – we are doing this for the kids! If you are searching for partial information and do not plan to read everything at this web site, at the minimum please open the Training Program page below and read Give Way Training.
The CTC was specifically designed to be run by youth, and it became an excellent showcase of the talent of youth. Check out the resource material below used to make the Challenge Trophy Camporee successful.
Thanks for visiting the Youth Run Camporee Resource Website
We will add info and/or update it in the future for continuous improvement. We also welcome feedback, so do not be shy! While the format and information seems clear to the person who wrote it, readers may need clarification or a little help with the "big picture". We are here to help! What we do, we do for the youth!