The Scout Association in the UK is one of 170 members of the World Organisation of the Scout Movement (WOSM), which is headquartered in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia and Geneva, Switzerland. We are therefore a part of the Global Scouting movement with some 50 million active members. It is the counterpart of the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts (WAGGGS). Uniformed Scout members in the UK wear a membership award badge to show their membership of an organisation recognised by WOSM and all national scout associations have the same or a similar badge on their uniforms as well.
Scouting in the UK
The Scout Association is incorporated by Royal Charter and aims to promote the development of young people in achieving their full physical, intellectual, social, spiritual and emotional potentials as individuals, as responsible citizens and as members of their local, national and international communities.
The Charter of the Association provides for the making of bye-laws approved by Her Majesty in Council which, in turn, authorise the making of the rules which govern Scouting in the UK (known as “Policy, Organisation and Rules”). The Scout uniform is legally protected and can only be worn by members.
Scouting in the UK is managed by our HQ at Gilwell via Scout Counties. The Scout County of Greater London South West, covers the arc of outer London Boroughs between Richmond upon Thames and Croydon.
Richmond upon Thames Scout District exists to provide leadership, advice and support for Scout Groups within the District, in an area covered by the London Borough of Richmond upon Thames.
Scout Groups are the smallest unit and normally have at least one Beaver colony, Cub pack and Scout troop. Explorer units may be attached to a Scout group, but are managed at District level and are separate from their associated group.
Each Group, District and County is managed by an Executive Committee and each level is run as an autonomous charity.