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Dear Beesource Members and Readers,

As you may or not be aware, Christopher Stowell, a 13 year old beekeeper/Boy Scout from Oklahoma, is currently heading up a campaign to get Boy Scouts of America to reinstate the Beekeeping Merit Badge. That Badge was discontinued over 20 years ago, primarily due to the low number of scouts who were getting the badge. A major difficulty that existed 20 years ago was that interested scouts could not find mentors.

The internet provides a new opportunity. It will now be very easy for interested scouts to find mentor beekeepers and bee clubs that are willing to teach the scouts.

To hopefully demonstrate to BSA that this is the case, Barry, the owner of Beesource, has allowed Christopher and me to use Beesource as a forum to promote Christopher's campaign. Our ultimate goal is to demonstrate that there are plenty of persons who support Christopher's request and beekeepers and clubs who will act as mentors.

WE NEED YOUR HELP, AND IF YOU ARE A BEEKEEPER, YOU CAN HELP!

I have just started four new threads on the Beekeepeing Merit Badge forum. Those threads lead you to requests for Beekeepers to use four different forms:

1. A Beekeeping Club Resolution form supporting reinstatement of the Beekeeping Merit Badge.

2. A general Petition in favor of reinstatement of the Beekeeping Merit Badge (for use by anyone, anywhere, to be signed by anyone)

3. A Petition form to be used by Scouts.

4. An Individual Beekeeper’s form Letter in support of reinstatement of the Beekeeping Merit Badge, with promise to act as a mentor.

Those forms are linked in the threads that I started in the forum relating to this effort. You can also find the forms under the "Resources" link on the Beesource.com home page.

Please check out the Beekeeping Merit Badge Project forum and the related threads. If you have any questions, please let me know.

Thanks,

Christopher Stowell and NeilV
 

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Thanks for spearheading this. I will do my part. My youngest is a Webelos, I'm a trained leader and would be more than happy to be a merit badge counselor. I know of another beek nearby that's an Eagle Scout and his son's and Eagle Scout...I'll mention it to them too.
 

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I absolutely support this. I am a former Camp Director, OA member and Wood badger! I will contact everyone I know to support this! Thanks.
 

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I was a boy scout when I was a kid, now in my late 20's, I would love to help out and be a mentor!
 

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Just saw this about the last Beekeeping merit badge awarded back in 96. Looks like they tried to keep it going but BSA decided against them anyway. This may be a lot harder then most think to get reinstated. :doh:

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http://entomology.ifas.ufl.edu/sanford/apis/apis96/apsep96.htm

THE LAST BEEKEEPING MERIT BADGE
The last beekeeping merit badge to be awarded by the Boy Scouts of America, Inc. was issued this spring by Dr. Glenn Hall of the Faculty of Entomology and Nematology here at the University of Florida who served as counselor. The merit badge had been officially canceled along with several others by the Scouts earlier this year. This happened in spite of letters generated by the beekeeping industry and others to continue the badge. However, the Boy Scouts gave special permission for Dr. Hall to work with candidates already completing some of the requirements so they could be awarded the badge. Only one Scout was able to finish the requirements on time.

The awardee, Christopher Scott Barfield, is a fourteen-year- old freshman at Gainesville High School. He has been invited into the Advanced Placement/Honors program, and is a trumpet player in the band. Christopher has completed all the requirements for the rank of Eagle Scout and is a senior patrol leader of Troop 416.

To date, there are no plans to resume the Boy Scouts of America beekeeping merit badge. This is unfortunate because it eliminates an important avenue of entry by young persons into the craft and science of apiculture.

In an effort to reinstate the beekeeping merit badge, a World Wide Web site has been created. If you would like to find out what you can do to help this cause, see http://www.webspan.net/~beluch/index.html.

Sincerely,

Malcolm T. Sanford
Bldg 970, Box 110620
University of Florida
Gainesville, FL 32611-0620
Phone (904) 392-1801, Ext. 143 FAX: 904-392-0190
http://www.ifas.ufl.edu/~entweb/apis/apis.htm
INTERNET Address: [email protected]
©1996 M.T. Sanford "All Rights Reserved
 

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I have to say now that they have badges in Xbox and Nintendo, but BSA can't justify beekeeping, I have to wonder where their priorities are.
 

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Green River Beekeepers Assoc held a meeting tonight in Taylor County Kentucky and all the members agreed to bringing back the merit badge. The paper was signed and filled out at the meeting and will be mailed to you tomorrow!
 
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