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4802 South 19th Street
Tacoma, WA, 98405

253-682-2217

Onboarding New Cub Scout Parents

Onboarding New Cub Scout Parents

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Information for New Cub Scout Parents and Volunteers, let's get you started...

Welcome to the adventure of Scouting in the Pacific Harbors Council! We look forward to helping you begin your journey. If you are unable to find the answers you need in the information provided here, please contact your Unit Leader or your Council Executive Staff.

Check out this short video that answers the 5 most frequently asked questions by our new families

Find out information about the following on this page!

  • The Adventure of Cub Scouts

  • Estimated Program Costs

  • Cub Scout Leaders

  • Keep Current with Cub Scout News

  • Chartering Partners

  • Adult Application Process

  • Youth Protection

  • Adult Leader Training Opportunities

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The Adventure of Cub Scouts

Welcome to the adventure of Cub Scouting! The Cub Scout program provides a common community for boys and girls from kindergarten to 5th grade to learn, take risks, and grow in a safe, fun, group environment. Here are some links to help you learn more about Cub Scouts:

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Estimated Program Costs

When compared to the cost of sports and many other activities, there is no doubt that Scouting delivers great value to its members! Costs may be offset by unit fundraising (such as popcorn sales) and other available scholarship funds. Cub Scout Packs handle these costs (with the exception of annual registration) on an individual basis.  Please contact your Pack leadership for details.  Typical costs may include but are not limited to the following:

  • Annual registration fee of $33

  • Boys' Life magazine subscription (optional $12 per year)

  • One time uniform cost (Lions purchase a t-shirt)

  • Annual handbook

  • Pack and/or Den dues

  • Activity Fee for Summer Day or other activities

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Cub Scout Leaders

Thank you for being a Cub Scout leader! Cub Scouting is all about new things. Fun, friends, and adventure! 

To help you get started please use the links below:

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I am a Den Leader, now what?

Being a Den Leader is an amazing experience. Remember, there is no one way to run a den meeting. If you and your Scouts are having fun, then you ran a successful den meeting!

Here is a list of available resources to help:

  • So You're a New Den Leader publication.

  • Pick up a copy of the appropriate Den Leader material at your local Scout Shop or order online.

  • National website Adult Leader Material.

  • District Roundtable held the second Thursday of each month, find out exactly when and where your District Roundtable is on your District Page.

In addition to formal resources, many ideas, activities and experiences come from current and previous Den Leaders, such as the ones in the sections below:

Do you have an idea to share?  We would love to hear about it!

New Den Leader? Questions to ask to get started:

These are questions that as a new Den Leader you might want to ask your Pack Committee to help you get started!

  • How much time does being a Den Leader take?

  • How long do I hold the position?

  • Who do I contact for supplies?

  • How do I pay for supplies?

  • What if the Scouts are not having fun?

  • Who do I contact for help?

  • What do I do if the Scouts are not listening?

  • If I do not like being a Den Leader, what are my options to step down?

  • Is there a handbook or program to follow?

  • How do the youth earn their advancement?

  • What are pins and adventure loops?

  • What if I cannot make a meeting?

  • How do I document advancement?

How to Prepare for Your First Den Meeting

Get parents involved immediately!

  • Have a parent only meeting, preferably before your first den meeting and set expectations.

  • Parents should be part of the process of setting up the den calendar for the entire year.

  • Parents should sign up to host a den activity – delegate and share the fun!

    • Each family can host a den meeting at their house and run the activities.

    • Each family can make arrangements and communicate the details for a den outing or field trip.

  • Help keep your Pack strong by encouraging parents to sign up for a volunteer role in the Pack.

Attendance at Den Meetings

  • A parent must be with their Cub Scout at all times, Cub Scouts is NOT a drop off activity:

    • At Pack meetings

    • At Den meetings

    • At Den outings or field trips

  • Set a den policy of whether or not siblings are able to attend

    • Some Den Leaders have activities for siblings at meetings

    • Some Den Leaders allow siblings at Den outings

  • How often should your den meet?

    • Once weekly or twice monthly at a Den meeting (an outing or field trip is considered a den meeting)

    • Once a month at the Pack meeting

  • When to meet?

    • Pick a day of the week and keep it the same throughout the year

      • For example...Wednesday nights at 7:00pm.

Den Leader Administrative Duties

  • Schedule den meetings and activities.

  • Communicate with our Scout families regarding upcoming pack and den activities.

  • Assist and prepare your Scouts for advancement.

  • Find out when special ceremonies are held at upcoming Pack meetings, like the following:

    • Bobcat Award

    • Blue & Gold Banquet

    • Arrow of Light Ceremony

    • Rank Advancements

  • Track your Scouts' accomplishments.

  • Awards

    • When are they presented to the Cub Scouts?

      • Pack meetings or den meetings?

  • Other types of awards

    • Segments, STEM, Adventure Loops

  • Administers your Den's popcorn sales

    • Get a parent to help!

Den Meeting Housekeeping Items

  • Den Dues

    • Pays for materials used for crafts and projects done at den meetings.

    • Den dues may or may not pay entrance fees related to outings or field trips.

  • Gathering Activity

    • Have an activity for the Cub Scouts to work on immediately upon arrival at Den meeting.

      • Word search, crossword puzzle, thank you note for recent outing, draw a picture for a rank advancement, etc.

  • Uniform

    • Decide when to wear the uniform shirt and when to wear the Pack t-shirt.

    • Den Leaders may also wear their uniform.

    • Official placement of insignia is online.

    • Vests are available to display segments and other patches.

  • Items you may want to purchase (from den dues).

    • Plastic container to hold your den supplies.

    • Small United States flag for den opening ceremony.

  • Den Photographer

    • Take pictures to share!

    • At Crossover ceremony you can put together a picture show of the activities.

What is your Den's role with the Pack?

  • Check with your Pack Committee to find out what your Den's responsibilities are at Pack meetings.

  • For example, your Den may responsible for a Pack meeting:

    • Set up of meeting space

    • Opening flag ceremony

    • Running the activity/program

    • Closing ceremony

    • Clean-up of meeting space

Do you have an idea to share?  We would love to hear about it!

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I am a Cubmaster, now what?

Thank you for stepping up to be the Pack Cubmaster! You are responsible for running the Pack meetings and ensuring that the boys and girls have a fun and memorable event. Remember, there is no one way to run a pack meeting. If the boys and girls are having fun and leave with a smile on their face, then you ran a successful gathering.

Here is a listing of available formal resources to help:

In addition to formal resources many ideas, activities and experiences come from the past Cubmaster or the Pack Committee:

  • Ask the other Pack Committee for any materials that they may have to share.

  • With the Pack Committee, set an annual calendar of events and activities each spring so that you are ready to get started in the fall.

Do you have an idea to share?  We would love to hear about it!

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Keep Current with Cub Scout News

  • To keep current on what is going on in our program there are several sources:
    Sign up to receive weekly updates from Scouting Wire.

  • Receive blog posts from Bryan on Scouting.

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Chartering Partners

Each Cub Scout Pack, Boy Scout Troop, or Venturing Crew is part of the community by partnering with a local organization to help guide and nurture the unit. Chartering Organizations may be civic, faith-based, or an educational organizations.  By partnering with a local, community-based organization, units will reflect the personality of the community. 

For more information about how our Chartering Partner relationship works, click here

Here is a fact sheet about our Chartering Partners, who they are, and how many units they sponsor.

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Adult Application Process

All youth serving adult volunteers are required to fill out an application and submit to a background check.  Ask your unit for an application form, download the form from the National website, or pick one up at the Tacoma Scout Office located at 4802 South 19th Street in Tacoma or the Tumwater Service & Training Center located at 1760 Barnes Blvd in Tumwater.

All Pacific Harbors Council applicants must complete Youth Protection Training prior to turning in the application.  Please attach a copy of the completion certificate to the application.

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Adult Leader Training Opportunities

All adult leadership opportunities require position-specific training in addition to Youth Protection Training.  All direct-contact leaders are required to complete basic training in order for their units to recharter each year.  Direct-contact leaders include: Cubmaster, Assistant Cubmaster, Den Leader, Assistant Den Leader, Scoutmaster, Assistant Scoutmaster, Venturing Advisor, Associate Advisor, Skipper, or Mate.  Studies have shown a positive correlation between a successful and thriving unit, and a trained adult leadership staff.

Training opportunities are available in a number of ways: