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Monday, June 01, 2020

Scouting is...

...One of the oldest, most prominent and popular youth-serving organizations in America...The Boy Scouts of America has close to 4 million Scouts and over a million adult volunteers.
...A voluntary, non-partisan, non-governmental organization...with the mission to contribute to the education of young people through a value system based on the Scout Oath and Law, helping youth to become fulfilled individuals who play a constructive role in society.
...A way of life, with a code of living...emphasizing character, citizenship, and fitness; encouraging intellectual, social, spiritual and personal growth; and providing a path to conduct a more ethical, fulfilling, and successful life.
...A global youth movement...with 28 million youth members in 185 countries around the world, Scouting makes a real contribution to developing the next generation of leaders to building a better future.

Why is Scouting Relevant?

Scouting is open to all youth: Rich, poor, or middle-income; regardless of race, religion, nationality, or physical ability, Scouting serves all youth. Help is also available for those unable to pay Scouting's modest fees.
Scouting provides positive role models: Caring parents, adults and community leaders help to provide good role-models, and organize programs and opportunities for Scouts to learn and grow.
Scouting is relevant: Scouting helps youth to face and deal with issues like drug abuse, child abuse, illiteracy, hunger, and teenage unemployment that they may face in this ever-changing world.
Scouting strengthens the family unit: Scouting is a family-centered program, designed to form a lifetime bond between a young person and the members of his family.
Scouting provides service to the community: Scouts are involved facing a number of different issues in the communities they live. They work with the others to achieve mutual objectives, such as organizing community-wide service opportunities, nature-conservation projects and other volunteering efforts in service to others.
Scouting is fun and adventure to a young person: Meetings, activities, outdoor excursions, and camps provide entertainment and a place where a young person can explore nature, test physical skills and grow leadership abilities in a safe and positive way.

How the Scouting Movement Began

Scouting began in England in 1907, created by General Robert Baden-Powell, one of the few heroes of the Boer War in Africa. The general had devoted several years to developing a new program for boys, making a significant investment of his time and credibility in something entirely untried and unproven.

Baden Powell felt that the youth of England had a critical need for a program like this. When the general had returned from Africa in 1901, he found Britain a changed nation: poverty afflicted millions of families, and youth were feeling the worst effects of it: they were directionless or in trouble. Baden Powell realized that Britain must engage young people or prepare to lose an entire generation.

Drawing on his experiences, Baden-Powell began formulating a plan that would instill skills, initiative, citizenship and character in youth, in combination with the excitement of outdoor adventure. He envisioned a program that youth throughout the country could practice together in their respective communities; and he hoped his plan would help people from all socio-economic backgrounds- something that was a very novel concept at the time.

On July 26, 1907, Baden Powell took a group of twenty one boys to Brownsea Island on their first camping experience...and the Scouting Movement began! In the next few years, it quickly spread to all parts of England and the British Commonwealth.

From its very inception, Scouting was an adventure. Baden Powell had risked everything on an untried idea, and there had been raised eyebrows among the establishment as he brought together youth from different social strata. Today Scouting is found in 185 of the world's 192 independent countries, becoming today's leading global youth movement.

Scouting Around the World

In the United States
Chicago publisher William D. Boyce was visiting England in 1900. Boyce was lost on a foggy street in London when an unknown Scout came to his aid, guiding him to his destination. As a reward for the help received, Boyce offered the boy a tip, but the boy refused, explaining that he was a Boy Scout and was merely doing his daily good turn.
Boyce was so impressed by the character of the young Scout, that soon afterwards, he met with General Baden-Powell. Months later, Boyce returned to America and founded the Boy Scouts of America on February 8, 1910. More than 110 million Americans have been Scouts; current youth membership is approximately 4 million.

In Latin America
Scouting was introduced in Latin America, one nation at a time, by different individuals specific to each country. Most of the founders of Scouting in each of the countries in Latin America had had an opportunity to see or hear first-hand about the value of Scouting for all youth.

Here are a few dates and facts about a few Scout organizations in Latin America:

Scouting started in 1920 and grew to its current 33,476 youth members.
Argentina: The origins of Scouting were almost simultaneous with its appearance in England in 1907; it has 38,537 members.
Venezuela: Scouting was founded in 1913; it now has 15,877 youth members.
Colombia: Scouting was introduced in Colombia by Miguel Jimenez, who founded the association in 1913; it currently has 12,194 youth members.
Guatemala: Founded in 1920; it has 11,272 members.
Costa Rica: Founded in 1915; it has over 10,000 youth members. An interesting fact: All Costa Rican university students, studying to be teachers, need to take a mandatory college course on the educational value of Scouting.

Other Parts of the World
Mexico, Argentina, the United States and other nations have a single national Scouting organization. But other countries, especially in Europe, have several separate Scout organizations, divided by religion or language, with different uniforms, advancement, and national hierarchies. The World Organization of the Scout Movement (WOSM), established in 1920, governs most of these national Scout organizations around the world.

Spain: Scouting in Spain was founded in 1912, with the organization fully legalized in 1977; it has 58,744 Scouts.
Australia: Scouting in Australia was founded as early as 1908; it currently has 63,200 members.
India: Founded in 1909 as an overseas branch, India established its own National Scout Association in 1938; it has 2,678,622 members.

Famous and Prominent Scouts...just to name a few!

Neil A. Armstrong - First person to set foot on Moon
Raymond Berry - NFL Hall of Fame player
Vint Cerf - Father of the Internet
William C. Devries, M.D. - Transplanted First Artificial Heart
Michael Eisner - CEP of The Walt Disney Company
Jake Garn - Retired Senator and Astronaut
Douglas Ivester - Former CEO of the Coca Cola Company
Tom Jones - Space Shuttle Columbia Astronaut
John F. Kennedy - President of the United States
Hank Ketcham - Creator of "Dennis the Menace"

Copyright 2011