About Scouting.

What we do  

As Scouts, we prepare young people with skills for life. We encourage young people to do more, learn more and be more. Each week, we help over 460,000 young people aged 6-18 enjoy fun and adventure while developing the skills they need to succeed, now and in the future.  

We’re talking about teamwork, leadership and resilience – skills that have helped Scouts become everything from teachers and social workers to astronauts and Olympians. We help young people develop and improve key life skills. We believe in bringing people together.  

We celebrate diversity and stand against intolerance. We’re part of a worldwide movement, creating stronger communities and inspiring positive futures. Find out more in our brand guidelines.  

At a glance We have 640,000 members in the UK   We have over 460,000 members aged 6-18   Our youth membership has grown for the last 13 years  
We prepare young people  

with Skills for Life  

We have opened 834 sections in areas of deprivation since 2013   We have over 160,000 adult volunteers  
Our Chief Scout is Bear Grylls   29% of our movement is female   There are 58,000 young people waiting to join the Scouts  
Our vision to 2023  

By 2023 we will have prepared more young people with skills for life, supported by amazing leaders delivering an inspiring programme. We will be growing, more inclusive, shaped by young people and making a bigger impact in our communities. Find out more about our plans at scouts.org.uk/ourplan  

Our values  

We are proud to live by our values of integrity, respect, care, belief and cooperation. The Scouts – The facts Aug 2018-April 2019  

Key benefits  

Compared to those not in the movement, Scouts are:1  

 17% more likely to demonstrate leadership skills  

 11% more likely to be better problem solvers  

 19% more likely to show emotional intelligence  

 17% more likely to be able to work well in teams.  


Physical and mental wellbeing  

 Scouts are 32% more likely to be physically active than young people who don’t take part in Scouting.  

Community impact  

 Scouts are one-third more likely to take an active role in their communities  

 Scouts are one-third more likely to help out in their local area, feel greater responsibility to their local community and volunteer to help others  

 Scouts are 18% more likely to be curious about the world around them and 12% more likely to accept diversity in other people’s backgrounds and beliefs


There are now 638,827 Scouts in the UK.2 This should be rounded to ‘There are now 640,000 Scouts in the UK’.  

This is the key membership figure to quote.  

We have 461,598 young people aged 6-18 in the Scouts. This should be rounded to ‘There are now 460,000 young people aged 6-18 in the Scouts.’3 There are 475,294 young people aged 6-25 in the Scouts and our youth membership has grown for thirteen years in a row.  

We now have 163,533 adult volunteers in the Scouts.4 This should be rounded to ‘There are over 160,000 adult volunteers in the Scouts’.  

 We have a total of 182,669 female members in the Scouts5 (29% of our total membership, 27 years on since we first welcomed girls to all sections). The best to way to express this is: ‘more than a quarter of our total membership is female.’ The figure can also be rounded to ‘there are over 180,000 girls and women in the Scouts.’  

 We have 102,501 female youth members aged 6-186 (22% of our total youth membership). This should be rounded to ‘over 100,000 girls and young women aged 6-18 in the Scouts.’  

 We have 75,137 female adult volunteers7 (46% of our total adult membership). This should be rounded to ‘Nearly half our adult volunteers are female’.  

Scouting’s UK youth membership has grown for the last thirteen years in a row!  

 Scouting has a waiting list of 58,000 young people – we need to provide more places for more young people who are currently missing out  

 Cub Scouts is our most popular section with 158,722 members.


 Since 2013 we have opened 834 sections in areas of deprivation and we continue to extend our reach with work supported by the Pears Foundation.  

 We have over 5,000 members in Groups supported by the Muslim Scout Fellowship 

 Our membership is now 29% female 

 Scouting is represented at Pride events across the country each year. 


 We have appointed 396 District and County Youth Commissioners  

 We offer targeted support for young people and young adults in governance, leadership, programme and line management  

 Over 240,378 YouShape badges have been earned since 2016.  

Community impact 

 Over 90,000 Community Impact Staged Activity Badges have been earned since 2015  

 Scouts have contributed 700,000 hours of action since 2015  

 22,000 Scouts have been trained as Dementia Friends.  

World membership 

 There are 164 National Scout Organisations (NSOs) located in 224 countries and territories around the world.12  

 There are over 40 million members of World Scouting in some one million local community Scout Groups, making Scouting the largest youth movement in the world.12  

Our heritage 

Scouting began on 1 August 1907 with an experimental camp for 20 young people on Brownsea Island. The camp was held on 1-7 August 1907.  

 Scouting was founded by Robert Baden-Powell  

The first official Scout camp was held at Humshaugh from 22 August to 4 September 1908.  

 We celebrate Founder’s Day on 22 February, Robert Baden-Powell’s birthday. 

Bear Grylls, Chief Scout 

 Bear was appointed tenth Chief Scout on 11 July 2009, taking over from ninth Chief Scout, Peter Duncan.  

 Bear Grylls was the UK’s youngest ever Chief Scout. 

 On 16 May 1998, at the age of 23, he reached the summit of Mount Everest. 

 Bear has visited tens of thousands of Scouts around the UK during his regular ‘Bear in the Air’ events, championing skills and character education. 

Our Scout Ambassadors 

Our team of Scout Ambassadors help raise the national profile of Scouting. They are: astronaut, Major Tim Peake, TV presenter, author and naturalist Steve Backshall; Olympic rower, Helen Glover; survivalist Megan Hine, DJ and presenter Chris Evans, Paralympic swimmer Ellie Simmonds; TV presenter, Anita Rani; polar explorer Dwayne Fields, adventurer Ed Stafford, TV presenter Julia Bradbury and actor/director, Warwick Davis. These ambassadors are specifically tasked with increasing the national profile of Scouting. 




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