With more than two and a half million active members and an additional one million adult volunteers, Boy Scouts of America is one of the largest and most enduring youth organizations in the country. Since its incorporation more than 115 years ago, its ongoing mission has been to “teach patriotism, courage, self-reliance and kindred values” – characteristics that are critical in building and maintaining strong communities. But scouting as we know it, however, could not exist without the strong, ongoing support of scouting families, generous corporations, and a host of other benefactors known collectively as the “Friends of Scouting”.
Horizons Companies has become an integral part of the fundraising machinery for BSA, beginning with a Friends of Scouting animated video it produced for the Simon Kenton Council of Central and Southern Ohio and Northern Kentucky. The animation delineates the activities and advantages that are available to the scouts who belong to the council, and explains how their initial membership dues defray only a small fraction of the costs for these benefits. It underscores the importance of becoming a true Friend of Scouting, and shows how easily this can be accomplished.
In fact, Horizons initially created the animation a few years back, and has expanded the content recently to make it more contemporary and engaging. We’ve also customized it for councils across the country, in locations from Baltimore, Maryland to San Francisco, California. These customized versions are also easily updatable, as a council’s message and needs evolve over time. Feedback from the councils indicates that the animations are having a favorable impact on fundraising efforts, while allowing councils to control their message with an easy-to-share product. The councils also enjoy the benefit of a reduced rate – part of a pay-it-forward philosophy adopted by Horizons’ founder and owner – who just happens to be a former Eagle Scout himself.
Throughout its history, the Boy Scouts have become famous for their determination to do a “good turn” every day. With this video, the Boy Scouts and Horizons are hoping that an ever-expanding Friends of Scouting will be sure to mirror that lofty objective – so that every boy who wants to participate in scouting…can do so.