WEST CHESTER (June 28, 2017) – State Senator Andy Dinniman recently secured $45,000 in state funding to establish and support new programs at the Chester County Council of the Boy Scouts of America’s new Program, Activity and Resource Campus (PARC) planned for Route 30 in West Whiteland.
“The Boy Scouts have shaped generations of young Chester Countians into strong, brave and responsible citizens,” Dinniman said. “And the new Program, Activity and Resource Campus will build on that legacy of leadership by expanding opportunities for enrichment, learning, development, and adventure to even more young people right here in our own backyard.”
The Chester County Council of the Boy Scouts of America is currently in the process of raising the final $1.7 million of $5.2 million in funding needed for the development of the PARC, its first new property for programs in nearly 100 years. The plan includes a 22,000-square-foot facility to house state-of-the-art training, meeting, and event spaces.
Situated on a 28.7 parcel of land that was gifted to the Scouts by a local family, the PARC will also offer various outdoor activities including: camping and campfires, fishing, wetlands management, playing fields, fitness activities, hiking and biking trails, ropes and obstacle courses, an observation towers, a climbing wall, open and wooded training areas, a potential link to the Chester Valley Trail System, and a rain garden.
The outdoor and indoor resources planned for the PARC will provide opportunities for Scouts to earn more than 40 merit badges.
In addition, the PARC is designed to accommodate and support all youth including those with diverse interest and ideas, as well as with varying physical capabilities. According to officials, it will provide resources for at-risk youth, as well as those in need or with physical disabilities.
Charles Rogers, the council’s executive director, thanked Senator Dinniman for his work in securing the funding and highlighted the organization’s work to advance learning and education, particularly in the field of STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math)
“The Boy Scouts are a leader in nontraditional education,” Rogers said. “We were doing STEM activities long before anybody thought of it as STEM.”
“Some of the most important lessons in life come outside the classroom. For so many young people the activities, skills, and values they first encounter in scouting set them on the path to personal and professional success and stay with them for life,” Dinniman, who serves as minority chair of the Senate Education Committee, said.
The Chester County Council of the Boy Scouts of America partners with community organizations that charter 168 Cub Scout Packs, Boy Scout Troops, Explorer Posts and Venture Crews that serve approximately 5,700 young people. Approximately 2,600 men and women volunteer in a variety of leadership roles with the scouts. The council is led by a 40-member volunteer board of directors and employs 21 full-time staff, as well as approximately 150 seasonal and part-time employees.
The council has been headquartered in a 6,000 square foot building in Westtown Township since 1966. Prior to that, the headquarters were in downtown West Chester since its founding in 1919.
For more information on the Chester County Council of the Boy Scouts of America or the PARC project, visit www.ccbsa.org.