To the Speaker of the House of Representatives

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Whether it's a Cub Scout in Maine helping to clean a park or a Venturer in California finding the courage to rock climb for the first time, the young people involved in the Boy Scouts of America benefit from a program of character development, citizenship training, and physical and mental fitness. For nearly a century, the Boy Scouts of America has promoted the timeless values necessary for youth to build purposeful and enriching lives.

Former President Roy S. Roberts, President John C. Cushman III, and Chief Scout Executive Roy L. Williams.

In 2004 alone, Scouting served more than 4.8 million young people. Local council total financial support and revenue rose 4.8 percent over the previous year, representing the largest percentage increase in more than a decade. Endowment assets increased 7 percent in 2004 to over $900 million. Council successes were further highlighted by a 32 percent increase in the number of councils that achieved Quality Council status for the year.

Such success wouldn't be possible without the diligent efforts of more than 1.2 million volunteers, who selflessly give of their time, finances, and energy. Again and again, volunteers state that they see this giving as an investment that will be fully realized when the Scouts of today are the nation's citizens and leaders of tomorrow.

More than ever, this spirit of service is alive and well not only in adult volunteers, but also in the Scouts themselves, who are focusing on community service. The Boy Scouts of America launched the Good Turn for America initiative in 2004 to address the issues of hunger, inadequate housing, and poor health in our country. By the end of 2004, more than 897,000 service hours by over 8,200 Scouting units had already been logged for this initiative. Whether helping to provide relief to hurricane victims in Florida or building homes for needy families in Texas, the BSA is partnering with local food banks, churches, cities, civic organizations, and some of the nation's most respected service organizations—including The Salvation Army, Habitat for Humanity, and the American Red Cross—to make a difference in the community.

Making a difference is what the Boy Scouts of America has been striving to do since its inception in 1910. The organization was built on the ideal of instilling in youth the strength of character that makes this possible. With our 95th anniversary just around the corner, we will bolster yesterday's time-proven values and traditions with today's achievements to continue making a difference in the future.

Roy S. Roberts
Past President

John C. Cushman III

Roy L. Williams
Chief Scout Executive