Our troop participated in the Cherokee District Spring Camporee on April 5-7 at Camp Boxwell.
While there we worked on the Search and Rescue merit badge.
We camped in tents on the Camp Craig (part of Camp Boxwell) activity field.
It was already getting dark when we got there and setting up camp in the dark was an adventure.
Meals were provided by our hosts.
After breakfast and the morning assembly, the scouts were divided into groups and went off to work on the study portion of the SAR merit badge. While the scouts were hard at work, the leaders went over and checked out the site where we will camping during summer camp. It appears to be a very good site, next to the lake and convenient to the bath house, dinning hall, and pool. After lunch, the groups of scouts participated in separate practice search and rescue exercises. Each group was given a search area to cover and the scouts had to come up with a search plan using what they had learned during the morning sessions. A "victim", played by a member of the local OA lodge, was placed in each search area.
If the scouts were able to find the victim in their search area, they then had to apply emergency first aid and perform a rescue. After dinner (excellent BBQ)the scouts attended the campfire ceremony where they performed a song that they learned at Camp Buck Toms. We also participated in the Cobbler Cook-Off and our cherry cobbler won first place.
One of the requirements for the SAR merit badge was to have been completed prior to the camporee. Scouts can still complete the merit badge by taking the online Incident Command System training and turning in their certificate of completion. The course is found on the FEMA website.
Once the course of study is completed, the scout will be directed to the online exam that must be completed. Note that the course must be completed without closing the web browser or you will have to begin again. The same is true for the exam. The online course is divided into six lessons, just click on each lesson in sequence to move through the course. It took me a little over an hour to complete the course and about 10 minutes to take the exam. Be sure to get your parent's permission before going to the FEMA website. At the completion of the exam you will need to enter your social security number and an email address when your certificate of completion will be sent. I strongly advise that you have a parent help you with this and that you use their email address. It is OK to open the printed study guide in a separate window to use during the exam, but no one may tell you the answers.
Information Flyer for the Camporee (includes what to bring)
Information on the Search and Rescue Merit Badge
Search and Rescue Merit Badge Requirements
Search and Rescue Merit Badge Worksheet
Information on the Incident Command System course
Link to the Incident Command System study course
Link to the written version of the Incident Command System study course
Link to the Incident Command System course exam
Here we are on Saturday morning. The scouts are being divided up so they can work on the merit badge in small groups. Scouts from several troops made up each group.
While the scouts were getting organized to start work on the merit badge, we noticed that the flag pole used for the morning ceremony was about to blow over.
Here Ben Haines form our troop is fixing the problem.
Here the Incident Commander is briefing the scouts on their search and rescue assignments befreo they head out on their missions.
Here a search group (with Will and Max from our troop) has found their victim and they are determing what first aid needs to be applied.
Here another search group has found their victim, administered first aid, and are now debating how to tranport him to a nearby road where an ambulance can pick him up.
We are back in camp after the mock search and rescue exercise to rest up for dinner. Some of the scouts are playing are play a game called Pirates Dice and some are playing frisbee.
The adult leaders have taken relaxation to the next level.