1. #1
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    Default How and Why to start up an explorer program.

    My department does not currently have an explorer program. I believe strongly in the idea and upon mentioning it to the hire ups have not received the most welcome response largely due to fears of liability.

    What are the pros and cons of an explorer program?

    How do you go about starting a program?

    What are the costs of starting a program?

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    I would start by contacting the Boy Scouts of America. They have a program all set. Start up expenses may be very minimal as department tools may be used in the beginning. The post needs to set up rules for riding along. The post that I ran explorers were not allowed to ride unless
    1. Minimum 16 years old
    2. attended regular post meetings
    3. A Firefighter agreed to mentor on the rig
    4. Had to maintain good grades in school
    5. minimum training standards from attending post meetings. (tool orientation, hose handling, scba orientation, ropes and knots, ladders)
    6. Explorers were never allowed in a burning building.
    7. Had to be in station when call came in and not chase apparatus expecting to help.

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    Quote Originally Posted by CommanderSims View Post
    My department does not currently have an explorer program. I believe strongly in the idea and upon mentioning it to the hire ups have not received the most welcome response largely due to fears of liability.
    It's a legitimate fear. It's controllable, but a significant issue.

    What are the pros and cons of an explorer program?
    Pros:
    It brings with it all the experience of operating a youth organization that the Scouts have accumulated over 100+ years.
    You can get a head start on training potential volunteers.

    Cons:
    If you follow the rules (as you should), under 18 Explorers are very limited in what they are allowed to do.
    If they're over 18, you want them as regular volunteers anyway -- not Explorers.

    How do you go about starting a program?

    What are the costs of starting a program?
    Contact your local Scout office or visit http://www.learningforlife.org/ and ask.
    "Nemo Plus Voluptatis Quam Nos Habant"

    The Code is more what you'd call "guidelines" than actual rules.

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    Thanks for the input. I spoke with my Training Chief yesterday and he said that he was all for it just needing someone to step up and take charge of it. I said I might be the one for the job in which he said to be careful as they "have big plans for me." Nice...

    He then went on to say it would have to be brought before the Chief.

    Here are my next thoughts as to how to organize it, all input is appreciated.

    I would like to do a one night a week at the HQ station for a few hours. I understand that under 18 cant do much such as ride on the trucks and what not. That is part of it, and I quite frankly wouldn't want to have to worry about what a bunch of teenagers are doing while trying to operate on an emergency scene. I look at it as a community outreach especially to our lower income/ troubled age groups.

    The organization:

    - One night a week at HQ.
    - Have two instructors/trainers, at least one being a certified instructor, on shift, come up and train with the students for the few hours every night.
    - I would organize the training subjects and equipment to ensure smooth operation. The instructors would essentially just have to show up, teach the material, and then leave.

    All of this may be covered by the boy scouts... I don't know. Just my thoughts.

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    Quote Originally Posted by CommanderSims View Post
    Here are my next thoughts as to how to organize it, all input is appreciated.
    Hold on to your enthusiasm but talk to the Learning for Life people before you start making plans. They'll be able to supply you with the framework as well as the constraints you'll need to work with.

    Your Explorer leadership adult staff will need training before you even begin. You'll want to develop SOPs for how Explorer activities are run, what your Post's mission is, the whole works. Most of this will need to happen before you even begin recruiting. Take your time; follow the program; make the best of it.
    "Nemo Plus Voluptatis Quam Nos Habant"

    The Code is more what you'd call "guidelines" than actual rules.

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    SOP's.... right.... you just officially shut my brain down with the mentioning of those... what a headache... but very needed/useful.

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    Quote Originally Posted by CommanderSims View Post
    SOP's.... right.... you just officially shut my brain down with the mentioning of those... what a headache... but very needed/useful.
    There is nothing more important than good SOP's when handling money, fire, or teenagers. This has all three!
    "Be polite, be professional, but have a plan to kill everybody you meet.
    --General James Mattis, USMC


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    Quote Originally Posted by EastKyFF View Post
    There is nothing more important than good SOP's when handling money, fire, or teenagers. This has all three!
    Yep, Kentucky Fried is quickly becoming an expert in this area given his personal junior dept keeps growing.

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