Although young people are at the very centre of Scouting activities (choosing, planning, executing and evaluating), the support of adults is key. This support can take different forms (educational, organisational…) and also varies according to the age range of the Scouts. Children in the Cub section, for example, will probably require a bigger presence and intervention than the young adults of a Rover section.
Today, around 7 million adults are involved in Scouting worldwide. These adult volunteers play an essential role, and are a valued and important resource. Being an adult volunteer in Scouting also means personal development. By supporting the creation of healthy learning environments, adults also develop leadership, organisational and communication skills, empathy, self-esteem, etc.
For National Scout Organizations to grow and offer better Scouting to more young people, they need to attract and retain motivated and qualified adult leaders and maintain their drive throughout their time in the association. Their knowledge and awareness about working with young people should also be renewed on a regular basis through refresher courses.
In recent years many National Scout Organizations have invested time and resources in identifying the trends in volunteering in their country; clearly identifying the volunteers that are needed in their NSO and developing strategies and plans to recruit and retain volunteers. Building on these ideas, tools and resources to support volunteering have been developed.
For more information, see: Adults in Scouting – World Policy