Youth Involvement

Retirement of the BSA Amateur Radio Operator Strip

It is with a heavy heart that I pass on the news that the Boy Scouts of America have discontinued the Amateur Radio Operator insignia strip.  This strip, along with many other vocational type strips are being discontinued, and no longer produced.

K2BSA has a great write up here.

There still is however the ARRL Service to Scouting award, which I don't think has been awarded in our section since its inception in 2014.  The bummer is that its only available for scouting leaders, and therefore youth members of the BSA who are Hams have no way outside the radio meritbadge to reflect their HAM status on their uniform.

The requirements for the Service to Scouting award are not difficult.  The nomination form can be found here.

I think I've done 8 out of the 10 things here, so I hope to see nominations from your area come pooring in.


Reminder - JOTA is right around the corner!

73 de N9AWM


JOTA 2018 - 6 Month Warning!

Jamboree on the Air 2018 is just around the corner.  This is your club's six month warning to get ready for a successful JOTA 2018.  JOTA 2018 will be the 61st annual event with over a million scouts from all over the world hitting the air waves.  The dates for JOTA 2018 are October 19,20, and 21.

What does your club need to do in order to have a great JOTA program?  It's simple.

  1. Open your club's radio room, or a club member's hamshack to use by scouts on Saturday October 20th.
  2. Provide atleast two operators to help man the radios for your agreed upon time slots.
  3. JOTA is occuring on almost all bands, including digital modes, and VHF/UHF via EchoLink/IRLP/DStar/DMR

What can your club do to bring a little extra to ensure a great event?

  1. Have your county or state Department of Homeland Security bring out their communications trailer.
  2. Give away free weather radios
  3. Dress up your radio room with the ARRL posters aimed at youth, or even setup a youth lounge!
  4. Teach the Radio Merit Badge onsite
  5. Have information about an upcoming Technician Class ready to go

Be sure to reach out to your local Boy Scouts of America Council or district representative to adverstise your stations availability for the event.  Most units will want to hang out and operate for approximately an hour or so.  You or your club could easily get several scouting units through the station in a single day.  Talk about a great chance for positive PR, and recruiting interested youth into the hobby.

Reach out to your ARRL resources if you need any help putting together your JOTA 2018 event!

New Youth Oriented Posters from the ARRL

The ARRL has put together a new series of PR posters for use.  These posters were created for the Boy Scouts of America's National Jamboree in August of 2017.  They are 11 x 17, and look great.  Please feel free to distribute them among your clubs!

Poster Collage2

Here's the link to the posters for download!


73's de N9AWM

2017 JOTA locations

As folks let me know about their JOTA Activities, I will post their location / contact information here

JOTA 2017 1019x1024

Current 2017 JOTA Location List

 Council  Location Contact Radio Merit Badge Open to
 Lincoln Heritage Council  Tunnel Mill Scout Reservation Steven Driver (steven.driver @ Gmail) Offered All Scouts




SkyWarn Youth Net to Debut on EchoLink

-- From ARRL Website --

The SKYWARN Youth On the Air Net is on the air, encouraging young radio amateurs to get on the air and learn about the SKYWARN weather-spotting network and basic weather facts.

The SKYWARN Youth Net meets on most Southwest Missouri SKYWARN repeaters Sunday evenings at 7:30 PM CT and is open to all hams via EchoLink.

The net will first take check-ins from young hams aged 25 and younger. The net also will offer an opportunity for participation by unlicensed young people in ham radio households who may be interested in obtaining a ham ticket.

“As this net grows and evolves, we hope to create and present brief educational segments,” said George Sfair, KJ6TQ. “We invite all young hams, their families, and the Amateur Radio community in general to check into this net. Young hams are the future of this hobby, and we encourage them to get involved, to get out on the air and talk, and to invite their friends to become hams as well.”

The SKYWARN Youth Net is held on Missouri linked repeaters in Fordland/Springfield, 145.49 MHz (136.5 Hz tone); Joplin, 145.35 MHz (91.5 Hz tone); Walnut Grove, 147.33 MHz (162.2 Hz tone); Buffalo, 147.18 MHz (136.5 Hz tone), and Branson, 147.15 MHz (162.2 Hz tone), as well as on EchoLink node 291849 or NNWS-R. — Thanks to George Sfair, KJ6TQ

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