Name: Carson Monks
From: Montague, NJ
Grade: High School Senior (12th Grade)
How Scouting Helps our Community
By Carson Monks
I have been a volunteering Boy Scout since June 2011, at an average of
about 5 hours per week. The capacities in which I’ve volunteered include: collecting
donations for the Salvation Army, serving as a Counselor In Training at Mount Allamuchy Scout
Reservation for the summer of 2015, cleaning up many different roads in our area, and serving in
a variety of leadership positions for my home troop and helping our troop deliver a quality
program to my community.
I’m currently the Service Chairman for the Order of the Arrow (Scouting’s National Honor
Society) in my area. In that position, I’ve run a blood drive, facilitated a $1000 donation to
Patriots’ Path Council, conducted a toy drive for the Jersey Battered Women’s Shelter, and planned
an entire weekend of service for Celebrate the Children, a school that serves children with
special needs. I also built two trailhead signs and cleared a completely overgrown trail at YMCA
Camp Linwood MacDonald (which was my Eagle Scout project), and set up an outdoor orienteering
course for them.
My biggest challenge as a volunteer was serving in a variety of leadership positions from age 12.
Serving as a leader is often difficult, when you’re in charge of managing projects and making sure
that all aspects of your service effort are fulfilled. But leadership is also one of the most rewarding
aspects of service.
I’ve chosen to be a volunteer because I believe in Jackie Robinson’s quote that “a life is not important
except in the impact it has on other lives.” I know that many other people in the world are not nearly as fortunate as I am, so when I see a chance to help them, I can’t pass it up. The thought that I can make a positive impact on a person’s life is what drives
me to get out there, to volunteer and serve my community.
My career goals aren’t specifically aligned around community service, but I do plan to continue
to serve the youth of America as a Scout leader in my adulthood. I see my volunteer activities
as “forward looking” in the sense that the things I’ve done as a Scout will make a positive
change in my community that can be seen for years to come. My Eagle Scout project was
designed to be permanent, so that children in the future can roam the trails at Camp Linwood
MacDonald and see the service that an Eagle Scout provided to their childhood camp. Who knows,
maybe it will even make one of those kids want to be an Eagle Scout.
I’ve learned a lot of things as a Scout, most importantly to conduct myself by the principles of the
Scout Oath and Law, and to never pass up an opportunity to serve someone else. I hope that I can
provide a positive memory to just one person, for them to look back on and remember that there
is goodness in the world.