The Truth About Giving Thanks

The craziness of the holidays is now in full swing. Seems like the pace is greater as the days get shorter.

I believe it’s important during these times to slow down and pause to say thank you to all of you.

There is something special about the people who choose to put their resources to work for Scouting. I have had the pleasure of working or volunteering for multiple non-profit organizations and the heart and attitude of Scouting volunteers is truly amazing.

You continually go above and beyond and it is noticed. In light of the recent holiday, I’d like to explore the note of “giving thanks” a little deeper.

I am often asked (typically by folks outside of the organization) why I do what I do. The easy answers are: it makes a difference, and I am giving back. I’m not sure either is fully true.

Like most of you, I really BELIEVE in what we do. I BELIEVE in this program and what it does. I think that’s why it hurts so much when the media chooses to downplay our success or fails to mention the good impacts that we have.

More than anything, I do what I do because of the people.

I have made and, frankly, broken friendships in my time in the Boy Scouts of America. Either way, I am thankful. The thing that makes Scouting a bit different is that we all argue for what we feel is right.

It is easy to criticize costs, management, someone else’s plan, buildings, payroll, chartered partners, popcorn, patches, etc. Yet, it takes all of that and more to move our organization forward.

It takes committed staff who are paid to serve the organization for their time and talent. It takes volunteers who more than know the value of an hour a week. It takes a Board that has the critical business sense and fundraising acumen to ensure that the movement grows. It takes parents who know, as we do, that Scouting will be a bright spot in the short time they have with their children.

In short, it takes every person – happy, sad, excited or angry – to make Scouting work. Perhaps that is the ultimate test of celebrating our diversity.

To those who are my closest friends, to those I have angered or upset, to those I have elevated and to those who have elevated me, thank you!

Every good day and every challenging one continues to make Scouting one of the best movements in the history of mankind. I, for one, cannot wait for my next opportunity to support this organization and its members. Rest assured that you all make us stronger.

Wishing you the very best this holiday season and throughout the New Year.

Yours in Scouting,

Jory Dellinger
Deputy Scout Executive