Abandoning Competition for Community and Embracing the Scout Spirit

Pack 994 and Pack 999 from Cherokee County

Brian Teijerio and Greg Tellason are Scout leaders with Packs half a mile from each other. Often this means the Packs are competing for boys to fill their unit, but with this group it meant embracing the spirit of Scouting through leadership and then being nominated for Cherokee County School District Partner of the Year Award.

In early 2016, Jackie Kopeski, a friend of Scouting and an employee at Boston Elementary, reached out to the Scout leaders and asked if they would be interested in helping to improve the school’s courtyard garden area. Over the years the area had become wilted, dry and unkempt explained Teijerio and Tellason.

Area before the units took on the project

Brian Teijerio, leader of Pack 999, and Greg Tellason, leader of Pack 994, gathered their group of 50 Cub Scouts and parent volunteers to take on the beautification project. The Packs pulled weeds, planted trees and potted flowers. Through their collaboration and leadership, the Packs were able to take the classic story of competitive recruitment and work together towards a goal, just as the Scouting program teaches. “The spirit of Scouting really showed through…being good citizens through leadership is what we teach,” Teijerio explains.

A few months after the project Pack 999 and Pack 994 were notified that they had been nominated for Cherokee County School District Partner of the Year by Boston Elementary for their excellent work on the project. The project expressed the Scouts’ leadership and reinforced the ancient Scout rule to live by: leave no trace. “[We] always want to leave a place better than we found it…and we definitely were able to achieve that here,” Tellason said.

The Cherokee County Partner of the Year Award recognizes a Partner and a Volunteer that has done outstanding work for each individual school and center in Cherokee County. The winners for each school in the Cherokee County School District (CCSD) awards a selected partner from the pool of winners. Among the candidates Cub Scout Packs 999 and 994 are nominated with are Northside Hospital-Cherokee, Home Depot stores and several Chick-fil-A locations.