What’s Up Newp is Newport County’s most-read online news source. The information, journalism, and news that we provide on a daily basis are made possible because of the support of our readers and advertisers. Help support our locally owned, independent, award-winning newsroom by becoming a What’s Up Newp Supporter today.
By Boy Scouts of America Narragansett Council
Bob Sirhal, a long-time volunteer in the Narragansett Council, Boy Scouts of America’s Venturing program, has been honored with the National Venturing Leadership award for helping shape Venturing into the successful program it is today.
This award was established in 2000 and honors those adult and youth leaders who have made national-level contributions to the Venturing program. A task force of youth Venturers and adult Advisors made the final selections and celebrated these outstanding leaders in a virtual event. Learn more about the award and the other honorees by clicking here.
The Venturing program is an inclusive, co-ed program for youth ages 14-20 that emphasizes four main areas:
Adventure – Mentoring, leading, and participating in crew-led adventures such as rock climbing, kayaking, volunteering at a local animal shelter or exploring your faith.
Leadership – Ongoing leadership development through training, mentoring, and hands-on leadership.
Personal Growth – Goal-setting in support of personal growth.
Service – Leading and participating in community service.
The program is operated through Venturing Crews, or units of local youth and adult advisers that meet on a set schedule to plan activities and events to grow as young leaders. This program is unique because youth plan their own schedules, events and programs to fit their own personal goals.
Sirhal has been involved in Venturing since 1996, when the program was called Exploring. In February 1998, Sirhal was appointed to a committee to assist in the re-branding of the Exploring program into the high adventure, leadership building, personal growth and service-based program of today that has served over 1 million youth across the country.
Sirhal was also involved in the 2013 update of all program and training related materials. He was assigned as the Chair of the Training committee and compiled a team of leaders from across the country that rewrote the Adult Leaders Adviser Training program, which is used by every adult adviser in the Venturing program.
He currently serves as the Training Chair for the National Venturing Committee.
“I was very surprised and flattered to be given the National Venturing Leadership award by the excellent youth leaders that make this program so rich,” Sirhal said. “When youth become familiar with this program, it truly resonates with them, empowering them to make decisions on their own.”
“Venturing is an essential piece of the Narragansett Council’s programming, and would not be the same without the leadership and dedication of Bob Sirhal,” said Tim McCandless, Narragansett Council CEO. “He is a true gentleman who impacts everyone he comes into contact with.”
The Narragansett Council has 14 Crews that compile 130 youth across the region.
To learn more about the Narragansett Council’s Venturing Program, click here. To learn more about the Narragansett Council’s Virtual Scouting program that is safely offering Scouting during the COVID-19 pandemic, click here.