Scouting: A Home for the Homeless

In 2016, a new Scout Troop was started in the heart of Atlanta. The Scouts in Troop 921 participate in all the same fun activities and leadership opportunities as every other Troop; the only difference is that this Troop is chartered at the Atlanta Mission Homeless Shelter. The Troop in downtown Atlanta has 12 Scouts who meet every week.

Scouting is a home to all different families from every walk of life. It is built on a foundation to serve every child and family. Every child deserves the opportunity to be a Scout, and it is part of the Scouting mission to serve and provide programming in every neighborhood. It is hard for adults to not have a permanent home, but the situation can often be tougher on the kids. Scouting gives these kids a chance to have friends, fun, and brings a much-needed sense of normalcy and stability.

One parent said not only did Scouting help her son by giving him friends and a place to be a kid, but it also helped her. She found a new purpose through the Troop and was able to speak to other parents about how Scouting has helped her be a better parent and leader.

Every week the Scouts gather to learn how to tie knots, live by the Scout Oath and Law and learn how to be leaders in their community. 

The first time I saw them get out into the community wearing their uniforms you could see the transformation. For the first time, they saw people in their community who wanted to help them.

Scoutmaster Joshua Crawford

Scouting of course is the uniform, the outdoor adventure and living by the Scout Oath and Law, which provides a sense of belonging and direction, but Scouting also provides experiences that last a lifetime to all children.

Scouts from Troop 921 have enjoyed the thrills of Summer Camp, visits to the Aquarium, seen the Nutcracker at the Fox Theater and even have met stage actors and the Cobb Energy Center. For this group of Scouts these experiences may have only been a dream, but Scouting has opened doors and created opportunities they may not have otherwise had.

For this Troop, it is all about coming together and showing everyone that Scouting means more than just knot tying, a uniform or camping. Scouting provides leadership skills, community and a place that has stability when that is hard to come by.