Since a small experimental camp was held in 1907, over a billion young people have belonged to the Scouting and Guiding Movements and, currently, Scouting exists in every country and territory on earth but six with approximately 28 million members. These two Movements are embraced by virtually every world religion including Buddhism, Christianity, Hinduism, Islam, Judaism, Sikhism, and Zoroastrianism.
The Scouting and Girl Scouting/Guiding Movements adapts to local conditions, languages, and cultures but all national programs share certain characteristics. Using the outdoors as a key learning resource, young people, working in small groups, participate in a progressive, non-formal system of self-education. These programs, customised to appropriate age groups, are designed to stimulate the intellectual, physical, social, and spiritual development of young people.
The Scouting and Guiding Movements believe in the importance of spiritual development of young people but uphold the principle that specific religious instruction is the responsibility of parents and religious authorities.