For most of us, Scouting is a local activity. We do not think to much about how far reaching Scouting is.
Did you know that the World Scouting Organization is in 160 Countries? That’s right. Scouts in 160 Countries on this planet share the values and attitudes of Scouting. They keep alive Lord Baden Powell’s vision of Scouting. There are over 5 million Scouts in America. That is pretty big, but you know that is not the biggest. Indonesia has 8 million Scouts! Wow can you imagine their Jamboree’s?
If you would like to check out more about the World Scouting Organization check out their website.
Locally, and I suppose I should say for me, Scouting has always been international. When I was a Scout, my first Troop was in Holland. Troop 100 in the Transatlantic Council, BSA.
Because of the place were we lived, an international military community, our Troop met in a building were all the Scout units met. Canadian Scouts, German Scouts, British Scouts and Scouts from Holland. We all met in the same place and most of us at the same time. We camped together, we did projects together, we hiked together, and we shared Scouting in common as we became friends.
I can remember when I became a Scout there, our Troop Quartermaster gave us a little round purple patch. It was the WOSM patch and we were told that we had to put it on our uniforms. I never had it on my uniform back in the states when I was a Cub Scout, but they said it was to show our membership in the Brotherhood of Scouting. It was cool, because on Wednesday nights when the Scouts met…. We all, British, Canadian, German, Dutch, and us Americans all had that same patch proudly sewn on our uniforms right above our hearts.
I cherish those memories and they were brought out yesterday as I spoke with Nick Wood from England. We talked about Scouting in our two countries and as I listened to his accent, I remembered the British Scouts in Holland, how they acted and dressed, how they had “Tea” instead of lunch when we were camping. The songs they sang and the games they played. It was great to spend about 3 hours chatting with Nick.. and we will do it again.
What was really cool was that we talked on Skype, so we connected the Scouting world over the internet… for free! I think that is how old BP would have wanted it.
Nick posted on his blog about our conversation. Check it out.
In the world in which we live, it is important to remember that Scouting is International. Scouts in 160 Nations that believe in the Scout Oath and Law.
I thought I would share part of the Vision of the World Scouting Movement, I think you will find that we all have a part in this vision, and that it is the vision of the founder.
“The Vision for Scouting is:
As a global Movement, making a real contribution to creating a better world.
We see Scouting entering its second century as an influential, value-based educational Movement focused on achieving its mission, involving young people working together to develop their full potential, supported by adults who are willing and able to carry out their educational role. ” WOSM website
Have a Great Scouting Day!