It’s not every day you get to see 12 Eagles in one room. This was exactly the sight on Sunday at Camp Tracy, however. A community from Salt Lake City gathered at the camp to honor their 12 Eagles — 12 young men who were receiving Eagle Scout Award. 

These Eagles overcame all odds to achieve this award. The boys, along with their families fled from a brutal government in Burma and settled in Salt Lake City, Utah. After arriving in Salt Lake, they joined Scouting, which has made all the difference in their lives. 

Very few of the boys knew each other before they joined Scouting. Now, they’ve all become close friends. It’s not a huge exaggeration to say that the structure, direction, discipline— and even love — provided by Scouting has saved their lives. The programs and the leaders helped these Scouts stay out of trouble and off the streets. These young men are now examples to the community and show a dedication and respect for all that they do. 

The Great Salt Lake Council’s Utah Refugee Scout Program is chaired by Michael Nebeker. He is an Eagle Scout who in his day job raises funds for Operation Smile a global network of doctors. They donate thousands of hours of service to provide surgical care for children with a cleft palate.

A fearless Eagle staring in the face of a screeching Bald Eagle.

“These refugees need Scouting more than ever before,” he said. “They need Scouting, and we need them.”

Madison Austin
studies Public Relations at Brigham Young University and is a marketing specialist at the Utah National Parks Council. She is an avid hiker and enjoys being outdoors. Growing up in the mountainous regions of Colorado and Virginia enabled her to follow these passions. After moving to Utah to attend college, she has spent her time fostering both a career in Communications and a love for Utah's National Parks.

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