Local members react to Boy Scout organization name change

"You know, we've had women involved in the program for a long time", says White.

Boy Scouts of America will drop "Boy" from its main program name, in an effort to be more inclusive.

After deciding to welcome girls, the Boy Scouts will simply be known as Scouts BSA from this day forward.

The Cub Scouts has already opened its gates to girls. Cub Scouts serves children from kindergarten until the fifth grade.

Boy Scout officials say more than 3,000 girls across the country have already enrolled and are now participating in the Cub Scout program that is co-ed.

The name of the programs' parent organization will remain the Boy Scouts of America. But many other people dismissed such criticism as an overreaction. "4-H is co-ed. Band in school is co-ed".

The name change is a part of the group's attempt to appeal to a broader base, namely little girls.

In its statements, the Boy Scouts of America said more than 3,000 girls have joined the Early Adopter Program and are participating in Cub Scouts ahead of the full launch later this year.

Girl Scout leaders said they were blindsided by the move, and they are gearing up an aggressive campaign to recruit and retain girls as members. That includes 23 new merit badges focusing on outdoors and STEM (science, technology, engineering and math).

Page added these scout troops will still be broken up by gender, but will now give girls ages 11-18 an opportunity to join.

"That's why we're the best leadership development organization for girls in the world". "We want you to join!'"

"It's going to be really nice", said Mother Lisa Vaughan "as she gets older that we as a family can be in Boy Scouts and have a family scouting experience that's more than just for Nathan". In its peak in the 1970s, the Boy Scouts of America had close to five million members, but this year, the organization said they had about 1.25 million Cub Scouts and over 800,000 Boy Scouts. The overall organization will still be named the Boy Scouts of America.

Alexandra Silverstone, 9, has been a Girl Scout in Virginia for the past couple of years, where she's enjoyed doing arts and crafts, or meeting with professionals like a veterinarian that let her troop do "surgery" on stuffed animals. And both the Boy Scouts and the Girl Scouts have seen membership shrink.

Surbaugh said BSA's national leadership respected the Girl Scouts' program and hoped both organizations could gain strength.

The Blue Mountain Council says it's an exciting time to be a part of the Boy Scouts of America!

  • Eleanor Harrison