The BSA Family Program & Award
The BSA Family Program & Award

BSA Family icon  
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Table of Contents
- Introduction
- Making "Family Talks" Successful
- Family Talk Subjects
- Requirements for the Family Award
- Implementing the BSA Family Program
- Responsibilities of the BSA Family
- Score Sheet, Family Award  (No Java)
- Certification Form, Family Award  (No Java)
- Patch, Family Award  (No Java)
- Pin, Family Award  (No Java)
- Certificate, Family Award  (No Java)
- Scouts-L Discussions on Family Award  (No Java)
- Family Book - BSA Family Award


Families are the basis of society. It is in the family that a child learns at an early age about love, values, social interactions, self-esteem, and preparation for today's world. Today's' family has been targeted as vital to the future of our nation and our world.

The Boy Scouts Of America has a deep interest in the strength of the family. Scouting's aim is to develop boys, young men, and young women into participating citizens of good character who are physically, spiritually, and mentally fit.

Through the Scouting movement, the Boy Scouts Of America can help parents to meet these challenges. The organization recognizes that it is the responsibility of parents to teach their children; however, Scouting is an available resource that can help today's families accomplish worthy goals while building and strengthening relationships among family members.

The BSA Family Book has two major goals: to strengthen families and to encourage family involvement in Scouting. It is written for all parents to use, regardless of their circumstances. The material will help a single father or mother, a two parent family, and grandparents or other adults to teach children in the home.

A weekly "Family Talk" is suggested and provides family members an opportunity to learn and to practice relationship skills that will strengthen individuals as well as the family. Each 'Family Talk' has suggested ideas and activities. The parent should select the ones that meet the specific needs of the family. Family members may wish to create or use some of their own activities to help the children practice a relationship skill.

"Family Talks" can be used in family talk sessions. However, it is hoped that as parents study the material under each topic, they will find ways of using these skills in their daily relationships with family members. Many of the ideas can be used, while riding in the car, during mealtimes, to provide activities for children when there is nothing to do, to initiate discussions in family councils' or as part of other family communications. In other words, family members can creatively adapt the materials and activities to meet their needs and use them to strengthen relationships within their family. Each topic is designed to build family relationships and strengthen your family.

A family may earn the "BSA Family Award." (consisting of: the Award Patch, the Award Pin, and the Award Certificate) The experiences family members share as they complete the requirements for, the family award will enrich family living and strengthen family relationships. The family will complete, within a 12 month period, five requirements to earn the award. Two of the requirements are mandatory and three may be the family's choice. Families who are registered for several years may earn the award more than once. For each 12-month period that the family completes the necessary requirements, the family may qualify to receive the "BSA Family Award. Each time the award is earned, the family will receive a BSA Family Award Certificate. The certificate will indicate the 12-month period in which the family completed the requirements.

When the family has completed the necessary requirements, the parent should sign the certificate and notify the pack committee member responsible for the BSA Family program. The pack committee member should sign the certificate and make arrangements to present the certificate to the family. The certificate may be presented to the family at a monthly pack meeting or at another time. The certificate could be mailed to the family, if necessary.

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Making "Family Talks" Successful

It is important that your family work together, play together, learn together, and worship together, but it is even more important how you do each of these things together on a daily basis. Family talks are meant to stimulate a desire in parents to teach their children relationship skills. But it must be realized that the family talks are just the beginning. For example, if parents choose to help the family with the relationship skill of loving, then they, the parents, must show love in the home from day to day or the teaching will be superficial and never really get through to their children.

Plan and prepare well for each family talk. Designate a regular day or evening each week for a family talk. Mark it on the family calendar. Determine the time. For example: Will it be held for an hour, or 1-1/2 hours?

Assess the needs of your family as you consider topics for family talks. Select a topic and your activities. Activities should be planned for the family talk session and for application during the week. Follow an outline. Include a summary and a challenge for each family talk. Make assignments to family members. Who will conduct the topic discussion, lead the activities, and prepare visual aids (if needed)?

Involving family members in preparing for family talks will contribute to their success. Be flexible. Whatever you do as you use this book, be flexible and a(bust it to your family needs. You may want to use a topic for 2 weeks in succession or use it once now and come back to it in a month or two. Pick the topics and use them in the order that best fits the needs of your family. How much of the material in the book you use is your choice. Substituting stories and examples of your own may be better than using the ones from the book.

Save your visual aids. Preserve any pictures or other items you make for the family talk. Get a large envelope to store everything that you want, to save. Save word strips and similar visual aids in smaller envelopes that will fit into the larger one you have prepared. Relax and enjoy it. The most important thing your children will remember is the positive feeling they get from the family talks. Be sure the atmosphere is one of love, understanding, and enjoyment. It is more important to have a good time with one another than to get through the topic selected. Don't be afraid to relax and enjoy your time together.

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Family Talk Subjects

Subject Number & Content Family Book Page Number(s)
  1. Building Self-Esteem
  2. Love
  3. Developing Responsibility
  4. Sharing
  5. Caring
  6. Planning and Organizing
  7. Coping
  8. Trusting
  9. Giving
  10. Communicating
  11. Believing
  12. Preparing
  13. Developing Talents
  14. Developing Family Roots and Traditions
12 - 14
15 -17
18 - 20
21 - 23
24 - 26
27 - 29
30 - 31
32 - 35
36 - 38
39 - 43
44 - 48
49 - 53
54 - 56
57 - 59

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Boy Scouts of America Family Award Requirements

To earn the Boy Scouts of America Family Award, a family will complete, within a 12-month period, requirements 1 and 2 plus three more of the remaining requirements.

As a family:

  1. Decide how many times each month you will meet to achieve the Boy Scouts of America Family Award. Make a commitment.

  2. Improve skills discussed in six or more of the 14 Family Talk areas.

  3. Plan and participate in one or more family outings.

  4. Start one new family tradition.

  5. Do a "Good Turn" for an individual, a group, or your community (elderly, needy, handicapped, nursing home, charitable fund-raisers, cleanup days, etc.)

  6. Attend religious services of your choice at least once each month.

  7. Attend or participate in at least two Scouting activities or functions (Scouting shows, pinewood derby, Scouting banquets, flag-raising ceremonies, etc.).

  8. Identify your local BSA council and neighborhood Cub Scout pack.

Ideally, the award will be presented to the family in pack meeting. If this is not possible, it may be presented by a member of the pack committee in an appropriate setting mutually agreed upon. If these options are not possible, the award may be mailed to the family.

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Implementing the BSA Family Program

The BSA family program is designed for all families, especially families with children of Tiger Cubs and Cub Scout ages. A family participating with the Boy Scouts of America may use the BSA family program to meet their own needs and to enrich and strengthen family bonds.

To integrate the BSA family program into the pack program, the pack committee chairman should designate a pack committee member to implement and oversee the BSA Family program. The pack committee member responsible for the BSA Family program should:

  1. Identify eligible families with registered boys.

  2. Plan a group orientation to initiate the BSA family program.

  3. Introduce the BSA Family Book and the BSA family Award at the group orientation and to individual families.

  4. Each family secures a BSA Family Book.

  5. Help participating families to use the BSA Family Book effectively, by keeping in contact with the family and giving encouragement and assistance as needed.

  6. Explain the BSA Family Award to the participating family. Encourage the family to earn the award.

  7. Invite members of the families using the BSA family program to help identify prospective BSA families.

  8. Invite BSA families and prospective BSA families to participate in appropriate pack activities.

  9. Plan to recognize families who earn the BSA Family Award, making sure that each qualified family receives the award. The award could be presented at the monthly pack meeting or at; another time.

  10. Monitor the community regularly in order to provide all eligible families an opportunity to participate in the BSA Family program.

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Responsibilities of the BSA Family

The BSA family should:

  1. Identify with the Boy Scouts of America as a BSA family and secure the BSA Family Book.

  2. Use the BSA family program to meet the needs of the family and to enrich and strengthen family bonds.

  3. Review the BSA Family Book

  4. Prepare and hold a regularly scheduled family talk each week.

  5. Earn the BSA Family Award by completing the necessary requirements.

  6. Arrange a time with the pack committee member responsible for the BSA family program to receive the BSA Family Award certificate.

  7. Identify prospective BSA families and refer them to the pack committee member responsible for the BSA family program.

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The BSA Family Book

The "BSA Family Book" is a vital tool for participation in this program. It is available at your local Council's Boy Scouts Trading Post, and at National Scout Shops. Ask for BSA Publication Number 33102. (ISBN 0-8395-3012-9) The current printing is 1992 (but watch for newer releases.) It is priced at approximately $2.95 (USD) + tax.  
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