Saturday, May 14, 2011

Disabilities Awareness – Final Part

Hello all and we hope that all is going well, I know it has been awhile since I checked in, it is good to be back.

We have now making the transition of the Facebook Group Autism and Scouting that we had to “upgrade” to the new Facebook Page Autism and Scouting.  We have about 50% of the group moved over and we hope that the rest of the group will come along for the ride. 

This new page will bring many more additional options to expand in the future. We hope to add polls to help get a better idea on what is wanted out of the page, a place to upload videos of your scout’s achievements. 

If you have anything that you like to see or would like me to write about, just let me know in the comments section or send me an e-mail at

I am also looking for any and all stories to pass along about how Scouting can support both our sons and daughters who have autism and how scouting has supported autism related causes. 

Today is the third and final part of the Disabilities Awareness Merit Badge that I recently took some from my troop through. 

This past Monday was the last meeting as far as classroom work was concerned. After this meeting it was up the scouts to get me the required information to complete the merit badge. 

This week we took on the Subject of accessibility.  The boys were supposed to visit two of the following; a school, a campsite, a place of worship or public place like a museum, exhibit or theater.  All of the boys had been to Camporee the past weekend and used that as one of the four places.
Camporee was held at a local motorcross park which had lots of open area for many stations. For the most part all of the boys gave high marks for access but did come up with many things such as more access to the main campfire program.  Some other minor access issues came up but on a while the camp was friendly for those with special needs. 

Most of the boys did choose the school while one when to a movie (he did say that his mom treated him to the movie so he could do the assignment – A Scout is Thrifty) and most of the schools in the area are very progressive and have extremely great access for those of all abilities. They were able to come up with some suggestions and I was proud of the boys for thinking outside the box. 

Then each boy had to present 10 myths which they had taken out of the merit badge booklet. We then proceeded to go over each one. Here is a listing of them.

Myth and Misconceptions

A person with a disability is sick. 

A person with a disability has a poor quality of life or lives a life totally different from people without disabilities. 

People with disabilities deserve special admiration for having the courage and creativity to overcome their disability. 

Only people in wheelchairs or who use crutches are disabled. 

People with disabilities need expensive, high-tech devices for mobility and other assistance. 

People with disabilities can do only light work or only simple, repetitive work. 

People with disabilities need to be protected from failing.

People with disabilities always need help at school or work. 

People who are deaf can easily work in noisy places. 

People who are deaf can’t speak. 

People who are deaf do not enjoy TV shows or movies because they can’t hear. 

All people who are deaf or hard of hearing can read lips. 

People who are blind have extra-sharp hearing.

People who are blind develop a “sixth sense”

Employees with disabilities miss more days of work than employees without disabilities. 

People without disabilities should take care of people with disabilities. 

Again, I was so impressed by this group of scouts and all they understood. Most all of them will earn this merit badge as soon as they complete a few more things which I am sure they will. 

I hope that there will be other scouts later on throughout the summer that will be come to me and ask to take this wonderful merit badge. 

I strongly encourage any Boy Scout leader to take on the challenge of putting together a program to mentor the boys through this merit badge and any Cub Scout leader (in the US) to offer a den meeting to go over the Disability Awareness Belt Loop. Also for any leader outside the US, if you don’t have a program that deals with this topic, you go to the BSA (Boy Scout of America) or to get more information. 

Thanks so much to all and let me know what you would like to hear. I have some things I have been thinking about writing about and I hope to get to them in the near future. 

Support your Scouts 

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