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“Muddy Boots Fund” Created to Benefit Boy Scouts and Stroud Center

719 540 Stroud Water Research Center
Cub Scouts measuring water chemistry

Cub Scouts from Pack 60 visited Stroud Water Research Center in 2016 for an overnight camping trip to learn about freshwater streams and their ecosystems and how to protect them.

AVONDALE, Pa. — Boy Scouts of all ages will now have more opportunities to spend time in the outdoors getting their boots muddy and becoming stewards of their local watersheds. As a result of a generous gift from brothers Greg, Barry, Keith, and Ray Bentley, the Chester County Council Boy Scouts of America and Stroud Water Research Center are expanding their partnership to offer additional outdoor and environmental STEM programs.

Stroud Center Director of Education and Eagle Scout Steve Kerlin, Ph.D., described the partnership as “a natural fit for the two organizations. Boy Scout programs offer leadership development, and many conservation-related badges, awards, and service projects align with the mission of the Stroud Center to promote knowledge and stewardship of freshwater systems through global research, education, and watershed restoration.”

Stroud Center programs for Boy Scouts will build upon successful pilot programs for scouts and award-winning boots-in-the-water school programs.

“We are in the business of changing lives, and this generous gift from the Bentley brothers will help us accomplish that,” said Scout Executive Charles E. Rogers Jr. of the Chester County Council, Boy Scouts of America.

Rogers went on to say, “We were overwhelmingly surprised when Greg (Bentley) announced the $55,000 gift establishing the Thomas P. Bentley Muddy Boots Fund during the Scout’s November 15, 2017 Distinguished Citizen Award Dinner, which recognized Greg Bentley for his significant and enduring contributions to Chester County.”

Greg Bentley shared stories and pictures demonstrating the impact of his family’s experiences in scouting as the driver for this gift to establish the Muddy Boots Fund. He noted that he is especially fond of his time spent outdoors, and hopes this fund will help more youth of today’s digital age spend time outside learning about and protecting the environment.

Bentley said “Scouts has given me and my family a love of the outdoors. With this fund, we want to encourage boys not only to love, but to understand nature.”

Expanded Stroud Center programs for Boy Scouts will feature day and overnight programs at the Stroud Center, investigating stream and watershed health that include fun, hands-on educational activities such as night hikes to search for freshwater eels, collecting and identifying aquatic macroinvertebrates, water chemistry experiments, stream habitat assessments, and service projects including planting and monitoring of riparian forests.

Other opportunities for scouts include: Eagle Scout projects, William T. Hornaday conservation award projects, Cub Scout activities, many Boy Scout merit badges, special conservation-related awards, training and assistance for summer camp staff and adults, real-time stream sensor stations on Boy Scout properties, future programming at the new CCCBSA PARC site in Exton, potential creation of a STEM Careers Explorer post for young adults 14-20, and many more ideas that will be discussed and collaboratively planned by Chester County Boy Scouts and Stroud Center education staff.

Please contact the Stroud Center at educationprograms@stroudcenter.org or the Chester County Council Boy Scouts of America at development@cccbsa.org for more information, or to register for a Muddy Boots Boy Scout Program, visit https://stroudcenter.org/education/scouts.

On November 15, 2017, Greg Bentley presented the Boy Scouts of America, Chester County Council, with a $55,000 check to establish the Thomas P. Bentley Muddy Boots Program, which expands Stroud Center outdoor environmental education opportunities for the Boy Scouts. From left: Bern Sweeney, Steve Kerlin, Greg Bentley, Harry Alberts, and Charlie Rogers

About Stroud Water Research Center
Stroud Water Research Center seeks to advance knowledge and stewardship of freshwater systems through global research, education, and restoration and to help businesses, landowners, policymakers, and individuals make informed decisions that affect water quality and availability around the world. Stroud Water Research Center is an independent, 501(c)(3) not-for-profit organization.

About Chester County Council Boy Scouts of America
The Chester County Council, which began in January 1919, serves Chester County, PA and the northwestern corner of Cecil County, MD.

The Boy Scouts’ vision is to prepare every eligible youth in America to become a responsible, participating citizen and leader who is guided by the Scout Oath and Law. We achieve this through thousands of dedicated, talented volunteers and a small number of professional staff. We are in partnership with more than 110 community organizations, have approximately 6,000 youth members and 2,600 adults volunteering their time to deliver those quality-run programs.

The Boy Scout Council Service Center is located on South Concord Rd. just off the Westtown Rd. exit of US 202, in West Chester. Our service center includes a Trading Post where you can find patches, literature, and uniforms helpful to Scouting families and volunteers. 610-696-2900, www.cccbsa.org

About Bentley Systems
Bentley Systems is a global leader in providing engineers, architects, geospatial professionals, constructors, and owner-operators with comprehensive software solutions for advancing the design, construction, and operations of infrastructure. Founded in 1984, Bentley has more than 3,000 colleagues in over 50 countries, more than $600 million in annual revenues, and since 2011 has invested more than $1 billion in research, development, and acquisitions.  www.bentley.com