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Van Wert Eagle Scout uses project as opportunity to make change

Given the opportunity and empowered, youth can do remarkable things.

It is an aim of the Boy Scouts of America to provide Scouts with the skills and opportunities to do just that. Every Scout in our program is provided an opportunity to learn the skills to help them be more competent adults. Scouting is teaching today’s youth about the values of citizenship, compassion, and cooperation so they become the leaders of tomorrow in their own lives and in their communities.

Van Wert Scout Liam Shartzer demonstrated how this works. He was one person making a difference when he used the opportunity of completing an Eagle Scout project to benefit the community.

An Eagle Scout project is the opportunity to demonstrate leadership skills learned in Scouting while performing a project to benefit the community. Funds raised for these projects benefit the community project directly and not the local Scouting organization. In fact, if there are any funds raised in excess of what the project requires, they are donated to the organization that is the recipient of the project. The Scout visualizes a project and discusses the project with all interested parties. Once the project is approved by his Troop and the appropriate organization, the Scout plans the work, raises the necessary funds, and manages a team to complete the project, all prior to their 18th birthday.

Liam had noticed a piece of what he calls “run down and unused land” in Van Wert and he had a vision of how it could be transformed into a small greenspace members of our community could enjoy.

As a member of Troop 35 at First Presbyterian Church, Liam took three months to complete his project. He communicated his vision to his Troop and the city. He planned the project and raised the funds to construct it. He then led a group of 14 people in successfully completing the project. On average, each of the members of his team had approximately 10 hours involved in completing the project, for a total of more than 130 hours.

When asked what some things are he learned during the process, he said, “Challenge inspires learning, and I learned a lot from this project. Better skills as a leader, better ability to plan and coordinate, and better financial responsibly.” As you can see, Liam completed a successful project for his community and learned how to do it better for his next contribution to his community.

Throughout the Scouting program, each participant learns skills they will need as they grow and mature. Scouts are involved in lessons and projects in character development, citizenship, and personal fitness as they participate in Scouting.

The rank of Eagle Scout is the highest rank in scouting. A small percentage of the youth involved in Scouting attain the rank of Eagle. However, even the Scouts who do not attain the rank of Eagle learn life and leadership skills that will serve them well in their future.

Since 1924, Troop 35, and other Scout units have been serving youth in the Van Wert community. This is just one example of the impact of Scouting.


Black Swamp Area Council
2100 Broad Avenue, Findlay Ohio
(419) 422-4356