Fly south for the winter for a Florida Sea Base’s volunteer development conference

Enjoy the warm weather of Florida while acquiring the latest tools to help your Scout unit succeed.

That’s the promise of a volunteer training conference at the Florida Sea Base. Pick from six weeklong conferences, each held in January 2020 at the BSA’s Florida home.

During your week in the Keys, you’ll learn new things and meet new people. The subject matter is excellent. The setting? Not too bad, either. You’ll have plenty of time to enjoy the beauty of this area and soak up the mid-January highs of 72 and lows of 65.

Which conference will you choose? Here’s a look at each one. When you’re ready, click here for Week 1 or here for Week 2. You can also download a form here.

Week 1: Jan. 12 to 18, 2020

  • Becoming an Excellent Council Training Chair, District Training Chair or Training Committee Member

For district training chairs, district training committee members, and council training chairs, this conference will help you to understand your role in your council’s/district’s training program. You will learn how to meet and exceed the training needs of your district/council. You will discuss everything your position entails including meetings you are expected to attend; trainings you are expected to provide; how to recruit and lead your training team; how to plan, organize and implement a unit/district/council training plan; and much more. Online and instructor-led courses, basic leader requirements and how to access and update training records will be discussed. Best practices and training challenges will also be shared.

  • Applying Technology in Unit Service

Conference attendees will have the opportunity to learn about the suite of tools available to commissioners, including Commissioner Tools, Member Manager, Training Manager, online registration, online charter renewal, Scoutbook, etc. Participants will have extensive engagement with Commissioner Tools in a hands-on learning environment. This will be an opportunity to provide meaningful feedback on the technology and will allow participants to expand their networks of Scouters to enable broadening the use of technology. This conference will have extensive use of presentation, guided discussion and hands-on experiential learning.

  • DIVERSEability and DisABILITY: How to Develop and Grow Scouting with Special Needs in Your Council

This course is for volunteer Scouters, professionals, chartered partner leadership, school district partners and parents that have a passion for helping Scouts with disabilities become involved in and benefit from all that Scouting has to offer. This course will help you to start or strengthen a Disabilities Awareness Committee within your council and will show Scout leaders proper procedures, modifications, resources and supports that can help our Scouts with special needs experience the outing in Scouting. Learn how you can help Scouts advance at all levels, experience excellent program, help their communities and feel included and empowered to make a difference in the lives of others.

Week 2: Jan. 19 to 25, 2020

  • Mechanics of Advancement

This course is a must for advancement administrators in units, districts and councils, whether they are volunteers or professionals in need of a refresher or new-to-advancement procedures. Conference attendees will gain an in-depth understanding of the essentials of advancement and an appreciation for the rationale behind the policies and procedures governing it. Group discussions will focus on effective ways to resolve the related issues and challenges that arise on a regular basis. Staff members are very well-founded in advancement issues and have a full understanding of the Guide to Advancement.

  • Venturing Commissioner and Council Venturing Service Conference

 This conference will focus on how commissioners, council Venturing volunteers and council professionals can support Venturing crews and Venturing officers’ associations. Using the new Venturing roundtable guides, A.L.P.S. program support guides, and Venturing advancement, participants will be able to develop a new toolbox filled with ways to help grow and support local units. Open to Commissioners (all levels), Venturing volunteers, and professional Scouters who support and want to grow Venturing.

  • Scouting Alumni and Friends

A successful alumni program can help you:

  • Better your council JTE scores  Ÿ
  • Increase active volunteers
  • Increase adult and youth membership
  • Create current and future fundraising opportunities
  • Diminish workloads for staff and volunteers
  • Reconnect with Scouting alumni who are looking for a way to help that fits their life
  • Increase your council’s visibility, in-depth knowledge, and community support

Experienced faculty will provide you with the tools, techniques and best practices to create or improve your alumni engagement activities and strategies.  Through Scouting Alumni and Friends and its affiliate groups such as NESA, Wood Badge and others, you can significantly impact the performance of your council. Come and learn how to find them and what to do with them after you do.

How much? How do I register?

A conference costs $495 for participants and $350 for spouses who aren’t attending the conference. The fee includes housing, meals, snacks, bedding and towels, course materials, and a sunset cruise if weather permits.

Registration information can be found here. You must register no later than Dec. 15, 2019.

How to get more info

  • Learn more about each of these conferences and other trainings, click here.
  • For questions about a conference, call 817-430-5331
  • For questions about Florida Sea Base facilities, call 305-664-4173
About Michael Freeman 133 Articles
Michael Freeman, an Eagle Scout, is associate editor of Boys’ Life, Scouting and Eagles’ Call magazines.