“Helping others,” a major tenet of The Scout Oath, was demonstrated recently by Cub Scout Pack 3599, a 45-member group of six to 12 year-olds from Chicago’s South Side. The Pack donated several boxes of office supplies to Hyde Park Refugee Project through Augustan Lutheran Church of Hyde Park, the Pack’s Charter Sponsor since 2016.
“My office was relocating and we had excess office supplies,” says Cub Master James Roger Poueymirou. “Augustana has been a great to the Scout Pack, so we wanted to give back,” said the 40-year resident of Hyde Park.
In turn, Augustana Church administrative coordinator Elizabeth McCreless, with the approval of church pastor Nancy Goede, suggested the supplies go instead to Hyde Park Refugee Project that holds weekly meetings, ESL tutoring, and other refugee assistance programs at the church. Run entirely by volunteers, the Refugee Project relies solely on community goodwill and donations to further its mission. Poueymirou generously agreed.
On the first, third and fifth Friday of each month from 6:45 – 8:15 p.m, Lions, Tigers, Wolves, Bears and Webelos meet at Augustana to engage in service projects and participate in outdoor activities from bird watching in Jackson Park’s Bob-o-link Field to hiking, camping and neighborhood clean-up projects. “Dens” are divided by grade and include scouts from a potpourri of backgrounds and religions who attend Ray School, St. Thomas the Apostle, The Ancona School, University of Chicago Laboratory Schools and other area schools.
“Scouting is about character building, leadership training, outdoors and having fun,” says Poueymirou. “If they learn to be good citizens and work with trusted adults, these are all positives for young boys.”
This September, girls also will be able to join. “It’s all about inclusion. We want to make sure that we’re giving opportunities to those that want to participate. It’s also the right thing to do.”
For more information about local Scouting units, please visit Scouting Spirit!, a new column in the Hyde Park Herald written by Cubmaster Poueymirou.
Pictured above: Roger Poueymirou, Pack 3599 Cub Master, and Elizabeth McCreless, Augustana Church administrative coordinator