Boy Scouts of America
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The Boy Scouts of America (BSA) is one of the largest youth organizations in the United States, with more than 2.4 million youth members and nearly one million adult volunteers. Since its founding in 1910 as part of the international Scout Movement, more than 110 million Americans have been at some point members of the BSA.
The BSA's goal is to train youth in responsible citizenship, character development, and self-reliance through participation in a wide range of outdoor activities, educational programs, and, at older age levels, career-oriented programs in partnership with community organizations. For younger members, the Scout method is part of the program to inculcate typical Scouting values such as trustworthiness, good citizenship, and outdoors skills, through a variety of activities such as camping, aquatics, and hiking. The BSA has several locations in Florida, Minnesota, New Mexico, and West Virginia in the United States and Manitoba and Ontario in Canada that allow Scouts to participate in the various aforementioned outdoor activities which are collectively called high-adventure bases.
The BSA is a constituent member of the World Organization of the Scout Movement. The traditional Scouting divisions are ''Cub Scouting'' for boys ages 7 to 10½ years, ''Boy Scouting'' for boys ages 10½ to 18 and ''Venturing'' for young men and women ages 14 (or 13 and having completed the 8th grade) through 21. Learning for Life is a non-traditional subsidiary that provides in-school and career education. The BSA operates traditional Scouting by chartering local organizations, such as churches, clubs, civic associations, or educational organization, to implement the scouting program for youth within their communities. Units are led entirely by volunteers appointed by the chartering organization, who are supported by local councils using both paid Professional Scouters and volunteers.
The influence of Scouting on American society is frequently cited by both its advocates and critics. Critics have called the BSA's membership obligations unfair, resulting in litigation in various state and federal courts.
The progressive movement in the United States was at its height during the early 20th century. With the migration of families from farms to cities, there were concerns among some people that young men were no longer learning patriotism and individualism. The YMCA was an early promoter of reforms for young men with a focus on social welfare and programs of mental, physical, social and religious development.
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