This section is from the book "Scouting For Rural Boys. A Manual For Leaders", by Boy scouts of America. See also: Outdoor Adventure Manual: Essential Scouting Skills for the Great Outdoors.
The rural community has less population per square mile, therefore its relationships are closer. Chances for Civic Services are to be found about every rural home, neighborhood, trading center, rural church, rural school, grange or cooperative.
The District Camping and Activities Committee will do well to make a civic service survey of their own district to discover opportunities and needs. This committee should explore Scout chances to help:
1. What organizations need help? County Red Cross, County Public Health Service, Farmers' Institute, the Grange, Volunteer Fire Companies, County Tuberculosis Association, County Safety Committee, non-political services to local county, state or Federal Government.
2. Are there any plans for conventions, homecomings, field days, picnics, fairs, holidays, where Scouts could help? Thanksgiving baskets, Christmas toys, and help in charity and unemployment projects.
3. Are there any conservation needs? Tree plantings, wild life refuges, insect pest control or animal disease quarantines of the Department of Agriculture, which requires help.
These and similar facts for each district enable the District Committee to develop a program and acquaint Scout groups with the chance to volunteer their help.
1. Make sure the service will benefit the boy. The purpose is educational, toward sound citizenship ideas.
3. "Charity begins at home"-so does rural civic service-right in the home neighborhood.
4. Service programs for rural Scouts should avoid conflict with farm chores and farm work, as well as with school and church programs.
5. Generally, Scout civic service is rendered in Scout uniform, if the Scout has one-although helping a neighbor get his stock out of a flood might better be done in rubber boots and "old clothes."
6. The health and moral hazards, if any, should be carefully considered by the District Committee on Camping and Activities before endorsing proposed services. Provision for meals, transportation and perhaps shelter should be thought out, as it is unfair to leave boys marooned due to some one's neglect.
Before listing a number of rural service projects, let us note some of the main areas or situations where service chances may be found.
YOUNG BRIDGE BUILDERS-MIDDLE WEST
In and around the home.
About the farm.
In and around the school.
The Church plant and Church program.
Roadside beautification and safety.
Conservation (of many kinds).
Traffic and parking at public affairs.
Recreational areas and leadership.
Helping rural organizations.