By Darryl Alder
Mar 23, 2016

I will use what I learned at Wood Badge forever

That’s what Ken Tuttle, District Vice Chair, Fillmore Stake, Arapeen District said after his stake hosted  a Wood Badge course last fall. That is the last Wood Badge course I served on and I had vowed no more. It just hurt too much!

Some days, it just hurts getting old; tomorrow is the North Field Stake Wood Badge onsite staff meeting at Maple Dell Scout Camp. I’ve been thinking of the walking tour, the altitude and my age; I was feeling worried. 

Then, cleaning my e-mail inbox I found this note from Ken and reflected on how much it meant to him. My hurting, old body gave into Wood Badge magic all over again. I really am looking forward to the North Field Stake folks having the same kind of experience that President Tuttle did, no matter how much it hurts.

Let me share his note with you, so you can see what you think:

Dear Darryl

As a participant I counted 15 in the staff line one morning at Gilwell, you included. Then thought of the sacrifice behind all of service given by you all to organize, prepare, and present such a life building experience for us the participants. I’ve never been so aware and felt so connected to so many people during a high mountain activity. The live instruction about life’s lessons came from your hearts into mine. I did not want to go home. I thank heaven for all of you. I am simply not the same person as I was prior to the training, I am grateful to you and the Lord for the experience.

The beauty of the Tifie Scout Camp facilities and location is only surpassed by its spirit. We were all blessed to be there for six days as we enjoyed the magnificence of the mountains. Also I very much enjoyed the split weekend Wood Badge training schedule, it gave me the better chance to attend, as I work full time.

This morning I gave a 10 minute presentation on my Wood Badge experience to a portion of our company. All were interested as I spoke of topic after topic that pertained to life’s lessons. On paper it looks like 2/3 of the live presentations were centered about topics that were geared to help in all areas of our lives, not just helping our youth. Two company officers were present, one had attended Wood Badge at an earlier date, both were asked to help make it more possible for our SEI personnel to attend, they were receptive. We have over 200 employees and the senior vice president said he knows of some companies that send all of their personnel to Wood Badge. I believe that tells all of the new Wood Badge lesson methods and presentations and recommend every unit and adult scout leader attend as part of their training.

The Wood Badge experience for me could not have been better, my expectations were all met, and my hopes were expanded for those we have stewardship. What a great time we live in, all of the generations before us have nothing over on us. I’m thankful to live at this time. Again, thanks to all of the staff, for the fun, food, and training.

I will use what I learned at Wood Badge forever, as I complete my training goals, and commitments, I hope to help others as I serve.

Ken, forever is a long time, so I guess that’s how long I will be trying to help others through Wood Badge training too.

Though our course is full, there are 14 other LDS Stake hosted courses scheduled this year. Whether your stake is hosting or not, everyone of any faith or location may attend. Register today!

What are your experiences with Wood Badge?

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Author:  Darryl Alder | Strategic Initiatives Director, Utah National Parks Council, BSA. He has served on several Wood Badge Staffs in the past

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