World Scouting and Overseas Facilities
The World Organization of the Scout Movement is a federation of more than 149 recognized national Scout organizations. The Boy Scouts of America is represented in world contacts and developments by its international commissioner. The international efforts of the BSA are supported by the International Committee, one of the operating committees of the National Executive Board, and the staff of the International Division at the national office. Initiatives at the world level are addressed through three constituencies:
The World Scout Conference
The World Scout Conference is the general assembly of Scouting and is composed of six delegates from each of the 145 member Scout associations. The basis for recognition and membership in the WSC includes adherence to the aims and principles of world Scouting and independence from political involvement on the part of each member association. The Boy Scouts of America is a charter member and active participant. The conference meets every three years. The BSA has hosted it twice.
The World Scout Committee is the executive body of the conference that represents the conference between regular meetings of the full conference. There are 12 members of the committee, elected without regard to nationality for a six-year term.
What is happening at the World Level of Scouting? Please see a special message from William F. 'Rick' Cronk, BSA Scouter and current Chairman of the World Scout Committee, who presents information regarding the vision of the World Scout Committee and its relation to scouts and scouters around the world:
Message from William F. 'Rick' Cronk
The World Scout Bureau (http://www.scout.org) is the secretariat that carries out the instructions of the World Scout Conference and the World Scout Committee. The World Scout Bureau office is in Geneva, Switzerland, with regional offices in six areas around the world: Africa Region (Nairobi, Kenya), Arab Region (Cairo, Egypt), Asia-Pacific Region (Manila, Philippines), European Region (Geneva, Switzerland), Inter-American Region (Santiago, Chile), and Eurasia Region (Yalta-Gurzuj, Ukraine). The small bureau staff helps associations improve and broaden their Scouting by training professionals and volunteers, establishing sound financial policies and money-raising techniques, improving community facilities and procedures, and assisting in marshaling the national resources of each country behind Scouting. The staff also helps arrange global events such as world jamborees, encourages regional events, and acts as a liaison between the Scouting movement and other international organizations. A major effort in the emerging nations is the extension of the universal Good Turn into an organization-wide effort for community development.
The Boy Scouts of America and its International Division have created several avenues of financial support of the world Scouting movement. Included are the following:
World Friendship Fund
The World Friendship Fund of the BSA offers a practical Good Turn opportunity for BSA youth members and leaders. Cash contributions are used to assist Scouting through the World Organization of the Scout Movement and through national Scout associations in developing countries. Tax-deductible contributions can be from individuals, units, camp, and training course groups. Unit participation in the World Friendship Fund offers a unique annual service project to benefit brother Scouts around the world.
United States Fund for International Scouting
The United States Fund for International Scouting (USFIS), within the National Boy Scouts of America Foundation, provides the opportunity for substantial support of World Scouting by individual business, corporate, and foundation grants. This fund is administered by an appointed committee of the BSA International Committee. The National Boy Scouts of America Foundation has full tax privileges and is not a private foundation.
Provision is made for trust and endowed instruments as well as current support of special Scouting projects around the world. Grant proposals from Scout associations around the world are received and reviewed for disposition by a volunteer committee.
The Baden-Powell World Fellowship
The Baden-Powell World Fellowship is a major program of the World Scout Foundation to establish an endowment fund for ongoing support of the World Organization of the Scout Movement and the United States Fund for International Scouting. Membership is open to individual men and women throughout the world. Each member receives a special medallion, certificate, and lapel pin in recognition.
Order of the Condor
Order of the Condor is an endowment recognition program of the InterAmerican Scout Foundation for individuals. Income from the fund is used to help support work of the InterAmerican Region of the World Organization of the Scout Movement. The region serves member Scouting associations of all nations in the Western Hemisphere.
Details on any of these programs are available by contacting the International Division.
International accommodations for Scouts are available in Switzerland and in England. All offer one-day visits also. All require advance reservations. Contact the BSA’s International Division for details.
Kandersteg International Scout Center
Kandersteg International Scout Center in the Alps of Switzerland is operated by the European Region of the World Organization of the Scout Movement. Dormitory and campsites plus mountain climbing and ski programs are offered.
Baden-Powell House, London, England, operated by the Scout Association of the United Kingdom, offers lodging and meals.
Gilwell Park, near London, is also operated by the Scout Association. It offers both indoor and campsite lodging facilities plus program activities.
Brownsea Island, Poole Harbour, Dorset, England, the site of B-P’s first experimental scout camp, offers limited indoor and campsite facilities. It is operated by the National Trust.