Welcome to the Conservation Resource Page for Three Fires Council. Here you will find information on many of the ways Scouts & Scouters can practice conservation, help the environment, earn awards, and make a difference in the world around us.

The Boy Scouts of America states that the conservation program emphasis is designed to incorporate throughout the Scouting program and activities an awareness and understanding of conservation as wise and intelligent management of natural resources.

The development of good citizens is one of Scouting's aims, and citizens need to practice sound environmental living and conservation of natural resources. There is need for an extended program that will encourage young people to

  • Look at the entire process of resource use
  • Analyze how actions and judgments often create problems
  • Understand decision-making processes related to the environment
  • Seek out commonsense methods that can be applied at home, in the community, in the state, and in the nation
  • Help improve the quality of life

This emphasis is directed toward making all those active in Scouting—youth, adult members, and their families—aware of their responsibility for the future. There is an increasing awareness that Scouting members and other individuals are an integral part of their environment and that their action or inaction affects the quality of life throughout this nation and the world.

Personal experience teaches the most lasting lessons. The conservation program emphasis has been developed to create a positive commitment to improving the environment and conserving natural resources through firsthand experiences and "learning by doing."

World Conservation Award

The World Conservation Award World Conservation - Cub Scouts World Conservation - Boy Scouts World Conservation - Venturing

The World Conservation Award provides an opportunity for individual Cub Scouts, Boy Scouts, Varsity Scouts, and Venturers to "think globally" and "act locally" to preserve and improve our environment. This program is designed to make youth members aware that all nations are closely related through natural resources and that we are interdependent with our world environment.

World Conservation - Cub ScoutsWorld Conservation Award - Cub Scouts

As a Wolf Cub Scout, you can earn the Cub Scout World Conservation Award by doing the following:

  1. Complete achievement #7 - Your Living World
  2. Complete all Arrow Points in 2 of the following 3 Electives:
    • #13 - Birds
    • #15 - Grow Something
    • #19 - Fishing
  3. Participate in a den or pack conservation project in addition to the above

As a Bear Cub Scout, you can earn the Cub Scout World Conservation Award by doing the following:

  1. Complete achievement #5 - Sharing your World with Wildlife
  2. Complete all requirements in 2 of the following 3 electives:
    • #2 - Weather
    • #12 - Nature Crafts
    • #15 - Water and Soil Conservation
  3. Participate in a den or pack conservation project in addition to the above

As a Webelos Scout, you can earn the Cub Scout World Conservation Award by doing the following:

  1. Earn the Forester activity badge.
  2. Earn the Naturalist activity badge.
  3. Earn the Outdoorsman activity badge.
  4. Participate in a den or pack conservation project.


This award can be earned only once while you are in Cub Scouting
(i.e. as either a Wolf Cub Scout, a Bear Cub Scout, or as a Webelos Scout

World Conservation - Boy ScoutsWorld Conservation Award - Boy Scouts 

You can earn this award by earning the following merit badges:

  1. Environmental Science merit badge
  2. Either Soil and Water Conservation OR Fish and Wildlife Management merit badge
  3. Citizenship in the World merit badge


World Conservation - VenturingWorld Conservation Award - Venturing

Complete the Ecology elective for the Ranger Award:

1. Explain the basic natural systems, cycles, and changes over time and how they are evidenced in a watershed near where you live. Include the four basic elements, land use patterns, and at least six different species in your analysis and how they have changed over time. Discuss both biological and physical components.

2. Describe at least four environmental study areas near where you live. Include the reasons for selecting these areas, their boundaries, user groups, past inventories, any outside forces that interact with them, and a list of what things could be studied at each of them.

3. Plan a field trip to each of the above areas, including detailed plans for conducting various investigations. Follow all of the requirements such as trip permits, safety plans, transportation plans, equipment needs, etc.

4(a) Under the guidance of a natural resources professional, carry out an investigation of an ecological subject approved by your Advisor. Inventory and map the area. Conduct a detailed investigation providing specific data for a specific topic.

4(b) Document and present your findings to your crew, another crew, a Cub Scout or Boy Scout group, or another group.

5. Teach others in your crew, another crew, a Cub Scout or Boy Scout group, or another group how to carry out an ecological investigation. Use steps 3 and 4 above with the group so that they may also learn by doing.

Show the relationships of global events and conditions, both political and environmental, to the areas that you described in steps 1 and 2 above. Determine how conditions in your local area also appear in other areas around the world. Describe some of the interrelationships between people and our natural resources that affect our global environment. Teach others in your crew, another crew, a Cub Scout or Boy Scout group, or another group about the interconnectivity that we all have with each other and our environment.



-This award is worn as a temporary patch on right pocket of the scout uniform shirt. 

William T. Hornaday Award

William T. Hornaday Awards 

HornadayHornaday Information - from BSA

Think of It as an Olympic Medal Bestowed by the Earth

Conservation and the Boy Scouts of America have been partners for a long time. Camping, hiking, and respect for the outdoors are a part of the Scouting heritage. Many of the requirements for advancement from Tenderfoot through Eagle Scout rank call for an increasing awareness and understanding of the natural sciences. Many former Scouts have become leaders in conserving our environment and protecting it from abuse. Right now Scouts are involved in learning about environmental problems and actively working to make a difference.

BSA - Blue Ridge Mountains Council - Hornaday Awards Guide: http://bsa-brmc.org/Hornaday - This link contains a useful GUIDE. The Guide provides detailed, step-by-step procedures for Scouts and Scouters who are interested in pursuing one of the Hornaday awards, building on the National overview of the awards. Those who earn a Hornaday award form a unique cadre of conservation-minded Scouts and Scouters who provide enhanced value to their Scout Council and communities. Hornaday awards require significant time commitment, completing up to five Eagle Scout sized conservation projects, and offer unparalleled rarity, with only one or two Scouts in the country earning the Hornaday Silver Medal, the highest conservation award, each year.

There are several different Hornaday awards. (The gold badge and gold medal are for adults.) Think of them as an "olympics of conservation," with an ever-increasing scale of challenge.  HORNADAY AWARDS DESCRIPTIONS AND CRITERIA

Hornaday Gold BadgeThe award is given in one of seven forms.

The local council may present the William T. Hornaday unit certificate for a conservation project by a pack, troop, team, or crew.
The council may award the Hornaday badge to individual Boy Scouts, Varsity Scouts, and Venturers for outstanding service in conservation.
The council may award the Hornaday gold badge to adult Scouters who have given significant leadership to conservation at a council or district level.

All other Hornaday Awards are conferred by the National Council:

Scouts and Venturers may apply for the bronze and silver medals.
Adult Scouters may be nominated for the gold medal.
Organizations unaffiliated with Scouting may be nominated for the gold certificate.

 Awards given in the Three Fires Council include:

Troop Certificate: (Pictured below) Rick Hintz accepts the prestigious William T. Hornaday Unit Award for service to conservation for Troop 140 from Ed Hedborn, Three Fires Council Conservation Committee Chairperson. Troop 140 is chartered by St. Pius X Church, Lombard, Illinois.

Adult Hornaday Gold Badge Recipients: (Pictured below) for their numerous years of service in the field of teaching conservation to youth.

Ed Hedborn - Three Fires Council Conservation Chair

Deborah Brown - TFC Conservation Committee

Jeff Mengler - TFC Conservation Committee

Hornaday PresentationRick Hintz

  Ed Hedborn Deb Brown

William T Hornaday Unit Award - Interactive Application Form

A Hornaday unit certificate, No. 21-110, is awarded to a pack, troop, team, or crew of five or more Boy Scouts, Varsity Scouts, or Venturers for a unique, substantial conservation project. At least 60 percent of registered unit members must participate. At least 60 percent of the registered unit members must participate. Complete the application for the unit award and submit it to Three Fires Council, attention Ed Hedborn, Conservation Committee Chair. The project description form should indicate the category of the project—soil and water conservation, fish and wildlife management, forestry and range management, energy conservation, air and water pollution control, resource recovery, or hazardous material disposal and management; the specific title of the project; and a detailed description of what was done, who did it, when it was done, and how it was done. Be sure to include any other pertinent information.

The Hornaday awards program was created to recognize those that have made significant contributions to conservation. The Hornaday Awards are highly prized by those who have received them: Approximately 1,100 medals have been awarded over the past 80 years. These awards represent a substantial commitment of time and energy by individuals who have learned the meaning of a conservation/environmental ethic. Any Boy Scout, Varsity Scout, or Venturer willing to devote the time and energy to work on a project based on sound scientific principles and guided by a conservation professional or a well-versed layperson can qualify for one of the Hornaday Awards. The awards often take months to complete, so activities should be planned well in advance.

The fundamental purpose of the Hornaday Awards program is to encourage learning by the participants and to increase public awareness about natural resource conservation. Understanding and practicing sound stewardship of natural resources and environmental protection strengthens Scouting's emphasis on respecting the outdoors. The goal of this awards program is to encourage and recognize truly outstanding efforts undertaken by Scouting units, Scouts and Venturers, adult Scouters, and other individuals, corporations, and institutions that have contributed significantly to natural resource conservation and environmental protection.

Conservation Good Turn

Conservation Good Turn Conservation Good Turn  Conservation Good Turn Patch

 Conservation Good Turn - Brochure & Award Requirements