In the past few years, I have gained an appreciation for just how large the Order of the Arrow really is. With over 170,000 members across over 250 lodges around the world, it is no surprise that our organization is able to provide several opportunities for Arrowmen from everywhere to participate and benefit.
One such event is the National Leadership Seminar, held multiple times each year in each region. NLS is a leadership course designed for lodge and chapter leaders to learn countless leadership skills that will serve them in and out of Scouting. The Southern Region offers three NLS sessions each year, and 2017 is no exception. Tennessee, Florida, and Texas will all host an NLS this year, and I highly recommend every Arrowman take the chance to attend. When I participated in 2013, I had an amazing weekend, and have heard dozens of others say the same.
Paired with NLS is the new Developing Youth Leaders Conference. A successor to the former NLATS program, DYLC is oriented for adults within the OA, teaching them each how to work alongside youth, for the greater good of our organization on all levels.
This summer, a unique event is being held at Philmont for Arrowmen with an interest in American Indian activities. Wachipi will be June 6-10 for $285, and is sure to provide youth and adult Arrowmen alike the chance to learn how to accurately build and improve their AIA program. Lodges with an existing program, or those looking to start one, should certainly send at least one representative.
Another opportunity being held this year is reflective of one of the cornerstones of our organization- service. With the National Jamboree being held this summer at the Summit Bechtel Reservation, it is critical that Arrowmen provide service to the event and its participants. For $425, a fraction of the cost of being a general participant, Arrowmen can serve in one of three key staff roles- service corps, trek guides, or AIA Village staff. I personally can not wait for wait Operation Arrow, this staff opportunity, holds for each of us.
Again, with an organization as big as ours, it is impossible to not want to participate in one of these great events. If you have any questions, or can’t wait to get involved, find out more at oa-bsa.org.