All Markets Strategy Leads to Increases in Translated Materials

One of Chief Scout Executive Wayne Brock’s main priorities for the BSA in 2013 is increasing youth membership and retention rates in a quality way. The organization’s All Markets strategy, in addressing this priority, has set goals of creating support and plans for councils that will lead to a 2 percent increase of market share in Asian American, African American, and Hispanic/Latino American youth by year-end.

Reaching these diverse communities will, at times, require printed, video, and online materials and resources in languages other than English—for example, recruitment, membership resources, leader-specific training, advancement, and Youth Protection materials. Producing second-language content can help the BSA achieve several of its strategic goals such as impact and participation, building the brand, and dynamic and relevant program by providing content to diverse and multicultural audiences.

To help our clients in this area, the Communication Services Department has developed a strategic plan to ensure that timely, culturally relevant and sensitive, and accurate translations and interpretations are provided by professional translators in a cost-efficient manner. In 2012, Communication Services completed more than 100 jobs that were either bilingual (English with a second language) or entirely in another language.

The most translated language was Spanish, but the department also translated materials into Korean, Vietnamese, Chinese, Russian, Portuguese, French, and Arabic. Some of the key pieces translated or produced in bilingual format included:

  • Eagle Scout study brochure
  • Updates to the Cub Scout Bear and Webelos handbooks
  • Various recruitment postcards, posters, fliers, and other materials
  • Learning for Life workbooks
  • Introduction to Outdoor Leadership Skills
  • LDS Cub Scout Den Leader Specific Training
  • JTE forms
  • Unit Performance Guide
  • Annual BSA Health and Medical Record

The BSA’s Language of Scouting has been translated into Spanish and posted online at

A translation committee made up of professional Scouters and Communication Services experts has been created to discuss issues and trends related to translation, participate in a peer review of our translators, and advise Communication Services. This is part of an ongoing effort to create a seamless and open approach to translations and to help the department’s clients better understand the nuances and challenges faced in developing content in a second language.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>