• 63°

Boy Scouts and United Way

The Crane district supports Dallas, Perry and Wilcox County for the Tukabatchee Area Council of the Boy Scouts of America, a program partnered with the United Way.

“Boy scouting is built on duty to God and country and emphasizes giving back to the community,” said Leith Wilson, senior district executive for the Crane district.

The funding from the United Way supports the scholarship amount for members of the Boy Scouts.

“The United Way funds help to promote scouting in our area,” Wilson said. “Some of the boys and families could not afford the costs.”

The Boys Scouts receive about $17,000 from the United Way, which covers only part of the $100,000 budget for the center.

The scouting program applies for funding annually with the Selma and Dallas County United Way offices and allocates the money to the programming for many ages. Cub Scouts serves first- through fifth-grade students, Boy Scout troops serve those 11 to 17 years, Venturing and Exploring serves to a co-ed group ages 14 to 20 and Learning for Life teaches character education of ethics and morals in local schools.

Members participate in numerous service hour projects throughout the year. The most recent, and still ongoing, project is the annual Scouting for Food Drive. Parents and members gathered canned goods and non-perishable items in neighborhoods on Saturday to donate to The Salvation Army here. Items will be distributed to people as part of holiday baskets for those in need in the Selma area. Participating groups in this event are Troop 46, Pack and Troop 30, Pack 98, Pack and Troop 94, Troop 126 and Troop 26.

“The Boy Scouts are a great organization,” said Major Eric Roberts, corps officer for The Salvation Army of Selma. “We are thrilled to involved with them.”

The Salvation Army is still collecting items if interested community members would like to continue to donate. To date, more than 3,000 pounds have been collected. Last year about 2,000 pounds were collected.

“Youth programs are so important,” said Jeff Cothran, executive director of the Selma and Dallas County United Way. “And they’ve done a fantastic job of mentoring in this community.”