Scouting Today

Since 1910, Scouting has helped mold the future leaders of this country by combining educational activities and lifelong values with fun. The Boy Scouts of America believes, and through nearly a century of experience, understands that helping youth puts us on a path towards a more conscientious, responsible, and productive society.

Scouting, with programs from Cub Scouting through Venturing for young men and women helps meet these six essential needs of the young people growing up in our society:

Mentoring

Young people need mentors. Positive relationships with adults—community and religious leaders and of course, parents—provide youth with good role models and have a powerful impact on their lives. Young people of every age can benefit from constructive, one-on-one interaction with adults beyond their own families. Scouting provides such adults. We have a process that screens, selects and trains the leaders who can provide that extra attention all young people need to succeed in life.

Lifelong Learning

People need to learn all through their lives. We live in a society that rewards continual acquisition of skills and knowledge. Scouting provides structured settings where young people can learn new skills and develop habits of continual learning that will help them succeed. Scouting, from its foundation in Tiger Cubs through the Venturing program for young men and women, offers a concrete program of discovering, sharing and applying knowledge and skills.

Faith Traditions

Young people need faith. There is abundant evidence that children benefit from the moral compass provided by religious tradition. We acknowledge that faith can become an important part of a child's identity. Each of the major faiths breeds hope, optimism, compassion, and a belief in a better tomorrow. Scouting encourages each young person to begin a spiritual journey through the practice of his or her faith tradition. One of the key tenets of Scouting is "duty to God". While Scouting does not define religious belief for its members, it has been adopted by and works with youth programs of all major faiths.

Serving Others

Young people need to serve. The level of community service is a good indication of the health of any society. Scouting has, from its inception, been deeply rooted in the concept of doing for others. "Do a Good Turn Daily" is a core Scouting precept. Scouting encourages boys to recognize the needs of others and take action accordingly. Scouting works through neighborhoods, volunteer organizations, and faith-based organizations to help young people appreciate and respond to the needs of others.

Healthy Living

Young people need to be well. To get the most from life, one must be both mentally and physically fit. A commitment to the vigorous life has been reflected in Scouting's outdoor living skills: fitness requirements stem from the very beginnings of the program. Scouting programs have long included challenging physical activities such as hiking, swimming and lifesaving as a part of the curriculum. First aid and safety programs are synonymous with Scouting. Our programs today include strong drug abuse awareness and prevention programs, emphasizing the value of healthy living habits.

Building Character

Young people need to know to be good and to do good. Few will argue with the importance of teaching values and responsibility to our children‹not only right from wrong, but specific, affirmative values such as fairness, courage, honor, and respect for others. Beginning with the Scout Oath and Scout Law, the Boy Scouts of America program is infused with character-building activities that allow youth to apply abstract principles to daily living situations.