From MeritBadgeDotOrg

Jump to: navigation, search
Recruiting goes on every day, not just at a one-night meeting.
Expect half of the families to plan their fall commitments in the spring.
Follow-up again with the rest at your fall roundup.

W.D.Boyce New-Unit Organizer Award
Recruiter Strip


Recruiting is also called "Roundup," "New Scout Orientation," "Race to Cub Scouting," or "School Night for Scouting"

Your spring and fall recruiting events are vital for your unit. With a spring roundup, you can recruit before they commit to other fall activities. New Scouts will get to go to Camp this year. Your summertime calendar is packed full with the trips, events, and camping they want. Parents who plan ahead can make great new leaders.

“A boy on joining wants to begin Scouting right away.”
Robert Baden-Powell

Your fall recruiting is important too. This is when you get another chance to recruit the ones you missed in the spring. Don't focus on the activities they just missed but what is still coming up.

Your program and your calendar will sell them on Scouting. Make sure that your calendar is planned months or a year in advance and stocked full of great events. Make sure to include all of the council and district events you can. Prepare a simplified, one-page calendar for recruiting. The most important sales flier you have is your busy calendar.

Your other tool will be a good recruiting flier. Your district executive can provide the recruitment fliers and posters.

Don't forget how flexible we are. If they miss a sports practice, they may not be able to play the next game. But in Scouts, you can miss a meeting or even a season and still be welcome.

The Six P's of Recruiting


Have a clear purpose:

  • Every boy deserves the chance to be a Scout.
  • Sign up Cub Scouts and Webelos into existing packs as well as Boy Scouts and Venturer
  • Recruit parents to be unit leaders and committee members
  • Organize new units in areas we are not currently serving.
  • You are "Here for the boys." Help every boy succeed, not just your own. Help every unit succeed, not just your own.


Involve everyone in the plan:

  • Ask every leader to participate. You need everyone's help that night and as you publicize the event.
  • Ask your district for help with Informational fliers and posters.
  • Ask other units to buddy up with you. "A Scout is Helpful." Work with each other.


A new Scout will rarely find you. You have to be pro-active and invite them, often several times.

  1. Ask each Scout to invite two friends. Referrals are your best prospects. If their buddies join, your Scouts are more likely to stay in too. Show them the Recruiter Strip they can earn.
  2. Ask your chartered organization to distribute your fliers. Go to their meeting and show them all you do.
  3. Ask your committee to take recruiting fliers to PTO, Religious Organizations, Sunday Schools, sports teams, clubs, etc.
  4. Ask local newspapers to run an article about a recent event and include details of your upcoming orientation.
  5. Ask local radio, TV stations, and cable providers to run Public Service Announcements you can get from your district.
  6. Ask if you can do fliers, boy talks, and an open house in area schools. Your district executive should have contacts with school administrators.
  7. Ask your past prospects who have not signed up yet to come this time. You may need to invite them several times.

Use all seven ways to promote your unit. Note that the key word is Ask. Use your resources. Brainstorm other ideas.


Hold the roundup where the unit meets or at their school. Make it a brief, upbeat, and well-planned rally. Don't talk about the past or use jargon like DE" or "FOS" as this can scare off new families.
Setup - 30 minutes early and to be ready for early arrivals. Leaders and Scouts only attend if they are in Uniform.

Gathering Activity
  • Ask everyone who attends to sign in with their Name, Home Phone, Cell Phone, Email, Scout's Name, and grade.
  • As they come in, pass out applications, fliers, and your calendar. Ask everyone to fill out the forms. Have plenty of pens.
  • Don't stand in a click with your friends. Have a leader walk each prospect to a table and help them.

Opening - 4 minutes: Opening Flag Ceremony. Pledge of Allegiance. Very BRIEF remarks. Introduce your leaders.
Presentation - No more than 8 minutes.

  • Let the Scouts tell about their favorite upcoming activities: trips, camping, Summer Camp, Pinewood Derby, etc.
  • End the group meeting in a few minutes. Adults: Don't overwhelm them with stories, facts, and figures.
  • Leaders continue to meet with families one-on-one to answer questions.
  • Register new youth members. Explain what they need to know one-on-one. Don't overwhelm them. Ask, "Do you have any questions?"
  • Have unit t-shirts available as a gift or at a small cost. If they leave in your t-shirt, they will come back.
  • Consider light refreshments such as punch and granola bars.

Closing - Thank them. Announce the unit's next meeting date and a Welcoming Activity (picnic, bowling, etc.). Closing Flag Ceremony.


Scouts with involved parents are more likely to stay in Scouts. Recruit adults to at least help if not be the leaders. These are great tools to help find out what parents can offer. Involve everyone. Scouts with "drive-by" parents won't last.


  • Call everyone who signed up to again welcome them and confirm information. Do not rely just on email.
  • Call everyone who didn't sign up in a few days and see if they have any questions. Can you call them again in a week?
  • Call your prospects again in a week. People often need to be asked several times.
  • Call your prospect again just before your next orientation. The ones you missed last time are some of the best prospects next time.

Recruiting Suggestions and Ideas

Whenever possible, coordinate your large recruiting events with other Units in your area.

If you are sending home flyers, contact the Superintendent or Principal of the school to ensure that you have permission.

If you have an extended time were you will talk with parents consider asking a Troop or Order of the Arrow members to take the Scouts and prospective Scouts outside (or to another room) to play Scouting games.

Use multiple resources for publicity whenever possible. If your Chartering Organization has a newsletter, or involves families with appropriately aged children, ask if you can publicize your event via them, or make a presentation to them. If any major events are going on within your unit, invite local media outlets to profile your group and report on the events. Submit major events to public calendars.

Contact any lapsed members personally. If a boy dropped out of the unit halfway through the year, a phone call to him or his family may encourage him to rejoin.

Have the existing Cubs go to school in uniform on the night their pack/den meets. At this age many boys really want to get a uniform and will be drawn into the game.


Cub Scouting
Organizing a new unit
Help finding chartering organizations
Personal tools