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Handbook is full of Scout "hacks"

How can you use the sun for directions when your smartphone dies? How can you cook a meal using just foil? What's the best way to help a friend who's being cyberbullied? While many turn to their favorite search engine to find these answers, Scouts know the answers and they learned them from the Boy Scout Handbook. The Boy Scouts of America (BSA) today released the 13th edition of its Boy Scout Handbook, a book that has been used by millions of Scouts to guide them through Scouting and life's many adventures.

First published in 1910, the Boy Scout Handbook includes lessons on citizenship, character and outdoor survival skills – elements that have been built into the fabric of Scouting. Just as the BSA continuously innovates its programming to appeal to the interests and needs of today's youth, the Boy Scout Handbook has also been updated to include new content addressing some of the latest youth topics and trends, such as cyberbullying, STEM education and sustainability.

"What young people experience in Scouting truly prepares them for life," said Mike Surbaugh, Chief Scout Executive of Boy Scouts of America. "From the small things like cooking techniques to bigger lessons about citizenship and character, the Boy Scout Handbook can help Scouts build an adventure and prepare them for various situations they may encounter in their lives."

To celebrate the new edition of the Boy Scout Handbook and showcase how Scouting can help prepare youth for life, the BSA developed a new video series called Handbook Hacks. The videos demonstrate how the lessons learned through Scouting and skills found within the Handbook can be knowledge that Scouts use throughout their lifetimes. The videos series begins this week with a video on Geocaching, a fun way to learn about navigation and uncover hidden treasures. The new videos will be introduced via the BSA's social media channels on Facebook and Twitter.

"Handbook Hacks showcase general tips and skills that Scouts learn and can ease or improve anyone's life," added Surbaugh. "From fun ways to spend an afternoon as a family to treating aches and sprains, we invite everyone to take a page from our book and find how Scouting can help you in your everyday life."

Scouts will be encouraged to get involved and share their favorite Handbook Hacks on social media using #HandbookHacks. They can create their own Handbook Hack video or simply share a tip from the Handbook. The BSA will feature these stories in various ways over the coming weeks.