Individual Youth Accounts

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Individual Youth Accounts teach Scouts to be Thrifty as they save for their future in Scouting.
Individual Youth Accounts teach personal management not by a lecture but through life experiences.

Paying your own way is a fundamental principle of the Boy Scouts of America. It is one of the reasons why no solicitations (requests for contributions from individuals or the community) are permitted by units. Young people in Scouting are taught early on that if they want something in life, they need to earn it. The finance plan of any unit should include participation by the Scouts.
Annual Budget Plan

Individual Accounts are bookkeeping ledgers, not separate bank accounts. Units "..using this method have traditionally had stronger programs with less turnover of youth..." -

When a Scout is successful in fundraising, his earnings can be first applied to his annual costs with remaining earnings going into the Scout's own Individual Youth Account.

Or the unit can take the money a boy has earned and split it up between the other Scouts in the unit by placing the Scout's earnings into the unit's general account.


Benefits of Individual Youth Accounts

Here are some of the benefits to allowing Scouts to have Individual Youth Accounts:

  1. Scouts learn self-reliance. Success should be from your own hard work not taking from taking a share of someone else's work.
  2. Scouts learn to plan for financial goals such as summer camp, trips, equipment, and uniforms.
  3. Scouts learn life skills of personal management through their work not lectures.
  4. A Scout is more likely to attend an he has paid event through his own work.
  5. A Scout is more likely to stay in Scouts if he has earned the funds he needs for the activities he wants to do.

Basic Expenses

Annual expenses for a Scout typically include:

  • National Council Registration Fees are just over $10 a year.
  • Boys' Life magazine subscription is about $12 a year.
  • Optional Unit Accident Insurance is just a few dollars per Scout and protects you from medical bills from an accident in Scouting.
  • Advancement and Recognition costs includes awards, ranks, patches, and more.
  • Activities for active Scouts may include:
  • Summer Camp programs are also age-appropriate:
  • Program Materials includes books and supplies supplies, flags, camping equipment, and more.
  • Uniforms are an ongoing expense as Scouts grow through the ranks and sizes.

Participation Fees Do Little to Teach Responsibility

An annual unit participation fee, too often completely contributed by parents, does little to teach a boy responsibility. The unit's entire budget must be provided for by the families, either through fund-raising or other means such as dues or fees.
Annual Budget Plan

A Scout is Thrifty

A Scout works to pay his way and to help others. He saves for unforeseen needs. He protects and conserves natural resources. He carefully uses time and property.
Scout Law
Men who were Scouts credit Scouting with helping them be more financially responsible.
The Value of Scouting Harris Survey

Importance to Packs

Individual Accounts
Packs using this method have traditionally had stronger programs with less turnover of youth (Cub Scouts are retained). Individual Cub Scout accounts, whereby the pack keeps track of how much a Cub Scout or his family has raised toward his "ideal year of Cub Scouting" goal, are critical to the success of this program. When individual Cub Scouts are credited for their efforts, they develop a sense of personal responsibility and participation.
Annual Pack Budget Plan

Importance to Webelos

Individual Youth Accounts are critical for Webelos Scouts to make the Webelos Transition into Boy Scouts. A boy who has learned to work towards his goals and save will be able to participate in more activities and is more likely to stay in. Also many Webelos Scouts earn enough to take their savings with them to Boy Scouts to pay for new uniforms, equipment, and their first year at Boy Scout Summer Camp. Packs send the boy on not just with money, but with personal management skills. Some packs instead take away the money earned by thrifty boys and use it to reward others in the pack.

Importance to Boy Scouts

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