Community Organization Award
In recent years representatives of several national chartered organizations have inquired about the development of a recognition that could be given to registered adult leaders in units chartered to community organizations, similar to the adult religious awards presented by the various denominations and faith groups. After study and evaluation, the BSA National Court of Honor approved the concept of a Community Organization Award square knot. This square knot would be available to be worn by uniformed Scouters who have been recognized for their service to Scouting youth in the community.
The Community Organization Award
The concept of the Community Organization Award is similar to the adult religious recognition program in that the award itself and the criteria for granting the award are under the ownership and auspices of the particular national chartered organization that presents the award. The intent of the national Uniform and Insignia Committee is to provide a square knot for Scouters who have received a BSA-accepted and -authorized award from a national community organization.
The Boy Scouts of America's Community Organization Award square knot consists of an embroidered gold square knot on a purple background with a gold border and is the means by which the BSA recognizes Scouters who have received an approved community organization service recognition. As with all other square knots, it is worn on the Scouter uniform shirt above the left pocket.
Development of the Award
Community Organization Award is a generic term used by the BSA to identify a category of awards used by secular national community organizations to recognize their members for voluntary service and achievement. The organization must also be a BSA national chartered organization. The recognition piece, the concept of the award, and the criteria for awarding and presenting it are developed and owned by the national community organization, which is also a chartered organization with the Boy Scouts of America.
To ensure compatibility with the objectives and mission of the Boy Scouts of America, the concept, requirements, and criteria for presenting the award must be approved by the BSA national Relationships Committee. Nomination/application forms are secured from the specific national community organization which owns and manages the award.
The Awarding Process
Nominations for an award would be submitted to the national community organization. A selection committee would be assembled by the organization to review the nomination forms. Each organization would develop its own selection process and criteria along generally established and accepted guidelines. Once the award recipients have been selected, the national community organization would arrange for presentation of the awards at an appropriate time and location. Upon approval, the Community Organization Award square knot would be available for uniform wear by the recipient.
As of January 1, 2008, there are 12 awards that fall into this classification:
The Marvin M. Lewis Award of the Benevolent and Protective Order of Elks (BPOE);
the Daniel Carter Beard Masonic Scouter Award;
the Veterans of Foreign Wars Scouter’s Achievement Award;
the American Legion Scouting Square Knot Award;
the Department of Defense—United States Military Outstanding Volunteer Service Medal;
the Herbert G. Horton Alpha Phi Omega Youth Service Award of the Alpha Phi Omega,
National Service Fraternity; the Cliff Dochterman Award of the International Fellowship of Scouting Rotarians;
the Ruritan Scout Leader Community Service Award of Ruritan National Service Clubs; t
he Raymond A. Finley Jr. Sea Scout Service Award of the United States Power Squadrons;
the National Society of the Sons of the American Revolution Boy Scout Volunteer Award;
and the International Association of Lions Clubs Scouter Award.
The George Meany Award of the American Federation of Labor & Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO) is also part of this category, but retains the use of the original square knot designed for the Meany Award.
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