The Scout Programs of Adventure Scouts USA develop an appreciation of commitment in our Scouts. Our world needs people who commit, whether it is to an idea, a concept, a task, or to each other. However, to protect ourselves from getting hurt, we as a society like to have all the facts before we commit to something. We want to know if it is possible, if it is going to be hard or frustrating, and we like to know all the information about something before we commit to it. We like to already know it is going to be a success before we invest ourselves. That is not real commitment.
Committing Before Knowing
No one is ever going to have all the information on any particular subject. Society thrives when people become committed to an idea and seek to achieve it. The Wright Brothers were committed to the idea that people would fly one day. It came true, but might still be considered a silly dream without their commitment. Our Scout Programs believe in the characteristic of commitment.
Success Tomorrow Means Committing Today
If one of our Scouts wants to earn the Challenger award one day, which is our highest award, what do they need to be doing today to make that possibility a reality? If they are five years old, they will join our Rising Star Scout Program. If they are a North Star Scout who has earned several of personal achievement levels, perhaps they need to invest more time in working on Challenges. The steps toward a goal can be large, such as joining the Scout Programs of Adventure Scouts USA, or small, such as choosing to pursue an interest in skateboarding. But all adventures begin by taking the first step.
Often in life, we try to minimize risk and insulate ourselves from the hand of chance. Yet when we create a layer of insulation, we create a micro barrier, which we hope shields us from pain, and yet often dulls the emotion of happiness. People similarly try to protect themselves from the characteristic of commitment. In some cases, they fail to commit at all and in others, they fail to fully commit, or fail to keep their commitments. We instill in our Scouts the knowledge that the success of their tomorrows is based on their choices today.
How Our Programs Help Our Scouts Commit
We have carefully developed programs, which appeal to our Scouts, are relevant, and require thinking on their part. We provide opportunities for our Scouts to experience personal responsibility, which includes their being responsible for each other and helping one another. We endeavor for our Scouts to appreciate that ultimately they are responsible for their own character and what they achieve in their life.
Our Scouts spend time with people who are positive role models so they can observe good character in others. We are more concerned with what our Scouts can do, with some help, than any of their prior unsuccessful efforts. We encourage within our Scouts the value of commitment in one's character. Our Scouts value commitment to their principles by their determining a course of action after analysis and standing up for what they believe. Since our Scouts are each unique, they might choose to do something differently than others. We expect them to take responsibility for their actions and once committed to their choice, be able to say why.
The Scout Promise
The first time our Scouts say our Scout Promise, they make a commitment. Every time they repeat it, they reinforce their commitment. Our Scout Promise is not just a collection of words, but a compass for living one's life and leading one's life with dignity and commitment. It is awe-inspiring for us to see so many making a commitment to live and lead their lives as Scouts.