By Darryl Alder
Jun 19, 2015

ALPS: the Key to Venturing Program Planning

Many Crew Advisors don’t know where to start when it comes to planning activities, especially since advancement in Scouting is not interesting to most of their Ventures. During the last five years, groups of youth worked to revise the program to make it more exciting and relevant. The key is to plan using ALPS:

  1. venturing levelsAdventure
  2. Leadership
  3. Personal Growth
  4. Service


If you need some structure, begin with the Discovery Award Requirements Adventure which forces you to plan around earning the award, as follows:


1. Participate in at least two Tier II or III adventures at the crew, district, council, area, regional, or national level. To see what makes a Tier II or III level adventure, turn to “Program Features for Troops, Teams and Crews.” The green circle/essential fits tier one with its beginner level activities—mostly day long activities for novices. Venturing’s Tier II matches the the blue square/Challenging level. At this level there is some planning and preparation. Most events will take fewer than 4 days and need youth to get some prior skill development—these activities will be beyond the standard range for most youth, but 48 months of theme ideas are presented in this excellent resource.
2. Complete the following:
a. Complete a standard CPR course such as American Red Cross—First Aid/CPR/AED for Schools and the Community or the American Heart Association— Heartsaver Pediatric First Aid/CPR/AED or an equivalent course.
b. Complete a standard first aid course such as the American Red Cross Standard First Aid or equivalent course.


3. Complete the Introduction to Leadership Skills for Crews course (or an equivalent).
4. Complete BSA goal setting–time management training course.
5. Complete Venturing Crew Officer Orientation.


6. Participate in service activities totaling at least 24 hours. Up to half of the service may be delivered personally; the rest must be delivered through crew service activities.

Personal Growth

7. Complete a structured personal reflection, and use this reflection and what you learned from the process to prepare for goal setting and as part of your Level II Award Advisor conference. Explore one of the following realms: “Adventures of Faith,”* “Adventures of Self,” and “Adventures of Others.”
8. In consultation with your Advisor, establish at least one personal goal, and achieve it. The goal should be grounded in the realm you explored in Personal Growth requirement 7.
9. Since earning the Venturing Award, participate in a conference with your Advisor.* As a part of this conference, discuss with your Advisor the challenges you faced and what you learned in fulfilling Personal Growth requirements 7 and 8.
10. After your Advisor conference, successfully complete a crew board of review.
*A Venturer is not required to share the personal reflection associated with “Adventures of Faith” with his or her Advisor, including the discussion that takes place at the Advisor conference, nor with members of a board of review.

As you can see, the youth who planned this award centered it on program. Try using this to help your program take off this summer and tell us about your successes in the comments below.


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