Co-ed Scouting in other countries. (135 lines)
David D. Miller +49 6221 404415 (DDM@DHDIBM1.BITNET)
Fri, 26 Jun 1992 19:56:26 CST
Don Izard asked a couple of days back about what proportion of
Scouting outwith the US is co-ed and which countries are still running
a program 'just for the boys'.
The World Bureau asked each national association to send information
on its membership and program. The replies varied in detail, but
a lot of information was returned.
The following 49 countries have completely separate programs for boys:
Algeria, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Barbados, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon,
Ivory Coast, Dominican rep., Egypt, Greece, Grenada, Honduras, India,
Iraq, Jamaica, Japan, Jordan, Kuwait, Liberia, Libya, Malta, Mauritania,
Mauritius, Monaco, Morocco, Nepal, Nigeria, Oman, Pakistan, Panama,
Papua, Paraguay, Peru, Philippines, Quatar, Sauda Arabia, Sierra Leone,
Sri Lanka, Sudan, Tanzania, Uganda, UAE, Venezuela, Yemen, Zambia,
The following 20 countries have co-ed Scouting at some age levels:
Argentina, Bahamas, Belize, Brunei, China (Taiwan), Costa Rica, Gambia,
Ghana, Guyana, Israel, Kenya, Korea (S), Lebanon, Singapore, South
Africa, Swaziland, Trinidad and Tobago, Tunisia, Turkey, United States.
The following 46 countries have boys and girls in the program at all age
Armenia (France), Australia, Austria, Belgium, Benin, Bolivia, Brazil,
Canada, Central African Rep., Chad, Chile, Columbia, Cyprus, Denmark,
Equador, El Salvador, Fiji, Finland, France, Germany, Guatamala, Haiti,
Hong Kong, Iceland, Indonesia, Italy, Lichtenstein, Luxembourg, Malasia,
Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Norway, Portugal, Rwanda,
Senegal, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, Thailand, Togo, United Kingdom,
The following four countries did not give information:
Botswana, Gabon, Lesotho, Madagascar.
So the score is:
Boys only: 49
Partial mixed: 20
Fully mixed: 46
Not known: 4
- In some countries the program is integrated, but membership
figures for boys only are sent to WOSM and figures for girls only are
sent to WAGGGS. These countries have been included in the boys only
- Of those countries in the first list, the following have a Trefoil
as part of their Scout badge: India, Iraq, Jordan, Libya, Nepal,
Oman, Yemen (The trefoil is a world Guide symbol.)
- Of those countries in the second list, the following also have a
Trefoil in the Scout Badge: Costa Rica, Israel, Turkey.
- BSA included Explorers in its own summary of its age brackets, and
is thus in the partially mixed list. Many of the others in this
middle list have a co-ed program for Seniors/Ventures/Rovers,
but there are also a couple with a co-ed program in the Kindergarten
age group and separate programs until mid-teens.
- The figures are mainly from 1988 or 1989, and don't include Scouts
in former Communist countries of central and eastern Europe.
Russia, Ukraine, Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia, Poland and Czeckoslovakia
now all have active Scouts, and all are fully mixed! When they join
the World Movement, they will tip the score firmly in favour of
- BSA is directly sponsoring the development of co-ed Scouting in
Russia. BSA and GSUSA Units in Germany are supporting co-ed Scouting
- With the exception of Greece and Turkey, the whole of western Europe
has co-ed Scouting. (Greece is changing, and Turkey is co-ed for Cubs.)
- Many of the 'boys only' countries are predominantly Muslim, or have
social/tribal structures which prevent boys and girls working together
(Some countries have all female leaders in a boys movement
because men don't deal with any children younger than 14.)
- Japan, the only major economic power in the first list, seems to
follow US trends in Scouting. (Look at the uniforms and patches!)
- The following countries gave specific information on coeducation:
- Danske Spejderkorps: formed by a Guide/Scout merger in 1973.
- YMCA Scouts: 35% female
- Baptist S&G: 90% Senior Units mixed; 48% Scout and 40% Cub Units.
- Egypt: National Federation of Boy and Girl Scouts
- Finland: merger in 1972. 40% of units mixed
- Germany: 3 of 4 Associations are mixed; 4th girls only.
- BdP: merger in 1976
- VCP: merger in 1973
- DPSG: 80% of Units mixed
- PSG: girls only; close work with DPSG at Unit and church level
- Greece: Joint activities at Unit level. Co-ed being introduced.
- Iceland: Co-ed since 1944
- India: Single organisation, but separate Units.
- Indonesia: Muslim -> separate Units, but same program
- Iraq: Single organisation, but separate Units
- Israel: separate units until age 14, then co-ed.
- Italy: (AGESCI) merger in 1974
- Jordan: Single organisation, separate programs, no coe-ed units.
- Libya: Single organisation, but separate activities
- Nepal: Single organisation, separate Units, some joint activities
- Netherlands: merger in 1973
- Oman: Joint national organisation, common program
- Portugal (Catholic association): Co-ed since 1976
- Senegal: Mixed at Cub and Rover levels only; common Scout program.
- Switzerland: merger in 1987
- Tunisia: Co-ed Cubs, separate Scouts, adult events mixed.
- Turkey: co-ed cubs, all other sections separate
- UK: senior section co-ed since 1977; all sections since 1991.
- BSA: Exploring (but not Scouting) for young men and women
- Uruguay: Cubs mixed or girls-only; Scouts separate; Rovers mixed
The information is taken from a book called "Scouting 'round the world",
published by WOSM, ISBN 2-288052-001-0.
There is a companion volume published by WAGGGS called "Trefoil
'round the world." WAGGGS is for girls only, so this doesn't highlight
when an association is co-ed. I'll try and borrow my copy back and do
David D. Miller
Scouting in a co-ed world!
Terry Howerton Sakima Group, Inc. SCOUTER Magazine Kansas City