Discover Scouting

Fostering the development of life skills, confidence, and independence for 70,000 members Australia wide

Maryland Shortland Scout Group is part of Scouts Australia and the wider international Scouting movement. All levels of scouts are fully inclusive of anyone between the ages of 6 – 26!

The foundations of the Scout Program is fun, healthy, outdoor activity, friendship, mentoring and gaining life skills.

The Scouting Movement is designed to foster the development of young people, build character, and improve social interaction, challenge the individual with physical pursuits and help the individual grow intellectually, emotionally and spiritually. 

Derived from positive lifelong values, missions and promises, the Scouting Movement throughout the world, strives to empower young people through achievement, positive reinforcement and recognition. 

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scouts through the years

Get to know your Scouting history

Be Prepared

The Scouting Movement dates back to the start of the early 20th century with the development of the youth group in its very basic form. The founder of the Scouting movement, Lord Robert Baden-Powell, born in 1857, was a proud English man and an honoured soldier, who believed that the youth of the world needed support to grow and to be taught life skills to help them throughout their lives, in a similar disciplined way that soldiers were trained. He believed that if he taught youth boys about resourcefulness, observation, and the power of holding useful life skills, that the youth of the world would be better equipped to handle both the positives and negatives of life. Thus, the Scouting Movement was born!

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The first scout camp at brownsea island

Drawing from his experience as a soldier and leader, Baden Powell held an experimental scout camp at Brownsea Island in the UK. It consisted of 20 boys from all different backgrounds who were taught the values behind Baden Powell’s scouting ideals. The group slept in tents, cooked their own food and learned value life skills through challenging outdoor activities designed to foster development, teamwork, critical thinking and imagination. The camp was considered an absolute success and its conclusion is considered the beginning date for the creation of the Scouting Movement worldwide. 


The first book on scouting is published

After the success of the Brownsea Island camp, Baden Powell set about writing down his thoughts and experiences, what he learned and how to adapt the movement in the future. 

‘Scouting for Boys’ was published in 1908 as the premier manual for Scouting worldwide.

The first instances of Scouts within Australia occurred not long after the release of Baden Powell’s book worldwide. 


The first scout rally takes place

After gaining popularity between 1908 -1909, Baden Powell organised the first ever scout rally at Crystal Palace in London in 1909. Some 11,000 boys attended the rally, cementing the Scouting Movements’ future throughout the world.

To Baden Powell’s surprise, there were several hundred ‘girl scouts’ in attendance as well, prompting Baden Powell to realise that young girls and women needed their own movement focused on activities that were more suited to women. Girl Guides was born with Baden Powell’s wife, Agnes becoming the first president of the Girl Guides Movement. 


Scouts expand

In the years following the Crystal Palace rally, scouts went through many expansions with the development of the different youth groups for varied ages, Wolf Cub Scouts and Rover Scouts.

Sub branches of scouts were also formed as the first Sea Scouts. 


The first scout jamboree is held

The first global scout jamboree was held in 1920 in Olympia in London. There were over 8000 youth scouts in attendance from 34 different nationalities. The week-long jamboree involved numerous activities, contests, and pageants, designed to test the boys and help them make new friends and develop comradery amongst their fellow boy scouts. 


Australia holds its first jamboree

The first Australian Scout Jamboree was held in December 1934 in Frankston, Victoria. The 10-day jamboree was the first international scouting event to be held outside Europe. It hosted 12,000 boy scouts for the duration, and even had a visit from World Chief Scout, Robert Baden Powell. It is regarded as one of the most well known jamborees in Australian history. 

1935 - 1990

Scouts continues to expand

The remainder of the 20th century saw the Scouting Movement expand significantly within Australia and the world. Various sub branches of scouting were established including Air Scouts and Deep Sea Scouts.

The youth group systems were firmly established, allowing scouts from aged 5 – 26 to be involved with the movement. 

Restrictions regarding the admittance of females within the movement were lifted and additions were made to make scouting more inclusive for all individuals. 

1990 - Today

Australia remains scouting proud

Today, scout in Australia is one of the premier youth organisations for boys and girls aged 5 -26. With over 70,000 members across all 8 states and territories, it continues to develop and align with modern principles, beliefs and values, while still honouring the foundations that were built by Baden Powell over 100 years ago.