Eagle Scout and assistant cub master James Lark said The Boy Scouts of America’s decision to allow girls and young women to join the BSA Scouting program was a chance to get his 12-year-old daughter Seren involved in scouting, a dream of hers.
Lark, an assistant cub master for Cub Scout Pack 8 in East Williston, said Seren would often come to BSA events and want to be a part of the organization.
“Our story is the same that is being told over and over nationally. My daughter spent a lot of time participating in Pack 8 activities and always wanted to join,” Lark said.
While several other girl BSA troops have formed in Nassau County since the new policy’s implementation Feb. 1 there were not any local options, Lark said. He said his daughter’s desire to become a scout and possibly earn the BSA’s highest rank, Eagle Scout, inspired the Lark’s to pursue founding a troop in the local community.
Cub Scout Pack 8’s events are hosted by the Community Church of East Williston, which Lark said he felt is the best place to host a new girl’s BSA troop.
“Already acting as Pack 8’s charter organization, the CCEW seemed the obvious choice to charter a girl’s BSA troop. I had not even finished asking reverend [Marcus Tillery] about it and he was on board,” Lark said.
The Community Church of East Williston announced Sept. 30 that it has just finalized a partnership with the Boy Scouts of America to become the official charter organization for the Shelter Rock Districts’ first Scouts BSA Girl Troop.
The Shelter Rock District encompasses the northwest quadrant of Nassau County and the creation of this Troop will be the first of its kind in the area, said church spokesman Wilson Troche.
Tiller, who said he was a scout growing up, said “There is no other program that prepares leaders for life like scouting. We are thrilled to be able to offer this opportunity to the young women of the community.”
The troop’s formation also has the support of the local BSA’s Theodore Roosevelt Council.
“Being able to have a home in East Williston that will help promote scouting among young women in the Shelter Rock District is the realization of a long-time goal for this region,” said Brian P. Gorman, senior district executive for the council.
Girls and young women who have completed the fifth grade and are at least 10 years old but not yet 18 are eligible to join, Troche said.
A recruitment event is scheduled for Friday, Oct. 11 from 7 p.m. – 8:30 p.m. at the Community Church of East Williston.
“Wilson’s input as charter rep and Brian’s help as BSA district executive has been and will be invaluable going forward. We will need plenty of parental input and assistance as we get off and running,” Lark said.