In Sandy’s wake, BSA Chief relays call for help

I mentioned a few ways to help Scouts and Scouters affected by superstorm Sandy on Tuesday, but today we’re getting more details about the toll on local Scout councils and what some units are doing to help.

In a letter sent this morning, BSA Chief Scout Executive Wayne Brock said that council camps in the northeast have suffered downed trees and destroyed buildings. Council offices have been severely damaged. And Scouts, Scouters, and BSA professionals have lost personal property and valuables.

Brock writes that Scouts and units have almost certainly lost “camping gear, uniforms, trailers and other supplies.”

In addition to suggesting ways to help through donations of money and time, he also spotlights two examples of Scout units doing what Scout units do whenever there’s a tragedy: cheerfully serving others.

Read our Chief’s complete letter below: 

A Message From the Chief Scout Executive

To: All Scouts and Scouters,

By Wayne Brock, BSA Chief Scout Executive

As you can imagine, a number of our councils in the Northeast are still struggling mightily to recover from the devastation left behind by Hurricane Sandy. And a Nor’easter is bringing even more weather damage to the region this week with snowfall and other hazardous conditions.

Reports are still coming in concerning any injuries to our people and damage to BSA facilities, and the National Office stands ready to assist in any way we can. We ask you to join us in keeping the councils in this stricken area in your thoughts and prayers. They have a long road ahead of them to restore their homes and property as well as their programs to support our Scouts.

Many of you have asked how you can help. For any neighboring councils that have the people and resources to lend a hand with transportation, supplies, or other immediate needs, we ask that you work through Jim Hans, associate regional director/support for the Northeast Region, to coordinate your relief assistance. For councils in other parts of the country, we believe monetary assistance would be the most valuable resource you could provide at this time.

The worst damage seems to be in several council camps where many trees are down and some have destroyed buildings. Some council offices have had water damage and several staff members have experienced damage to their personal property. Many Scouts and units have probably lost camping gear, uniforms, trailers and other supplies. If you would like to make a donation to aid councils recovering from Hurricane Sandy, please go to the BSA Disaster Relief Fund page for instructions.

Meanwhile, we have already seen tremendous examples of how our commitment to serve others is rising to this occasion. Here are just two examples of many Scout troops that are responding with service. Boy Scout Troop 683 in Pamlico County, North Carolina is establishing drop-off locations for the public to donate non-perishable food, water, and clothing to Sandy victims. And in Monroe County, Pennsylvania, Scouts from Troops 109 and 1910 – many who experienced problems of their own from Sandy’s wrath – have assisted the National Guard with people who have lost power and are out of their homes.

I am very proud of how these Scouts and others have volunteered to assist so many people in need. Let’s all muster whatever support we can to assist our people through this difficult time.

Scouting and Boys’ Life Advertising Staff Answers the Call

Our sales staff in New York experienced the devastation of superstorm Sandy first-hand, making their desire to help in the recovery efforts even more poignant.

Today, I learned that the advertising team worked together to compile donations on behalf of Scouting and Boys’ Life magazines.

They donated 15 large garbage bags filled with warm clothes for kids and adults, a suitcase, multiple pairs of winter boots, two comforter sets, 15 blankets, 200 scarves, and nonperishable food.

The supplies will help people in Far Rockaway, a Queens neighborhood that was among the hardest hit by Sandy.

Kudos to our advertising teams for giving others a helping hand in their time of need.

Photo from Flickr.  Some rights reserved by ma neeks

About Bryan Wendell 3282 Articles
Bryan Wendell, an Eagle Scout, is the founder of Bryan on Scouting and a contributing writer.