Questions and answers

What is guiding and scouting?

The basic principles of guiding and scouting in Finland

  • Scouting is an educational movement that aims to support the development of children and young people, taking their personal characteristics into consideration. Scouting is guided by the values of the two world organizations.

  • Participants commit to the Scouting values by taking the Scout Promise. The promise is taken in each age group and its wording is the same for all. The ideals to which the Scouts commit are the foundation of the movement. Taking the promise and its meaning are always discussed beforehand in a way that is suitable for the age, for example, through stories or discussions. Scouting ideals and their meanings vary according to the age group.

  • Taking the Scout Promise and committing to related values are part of the Scout Method. The method brings you towards the primary goal: to raise young people who have balanced personalities and lifestyles, are responsible and active, and think independently as members of local, national and international communities.

  • Scouting is open for all in Finland. You can participate regardless of your ethnic or cultural background, language, religion or conviction, operating ability, sexual orientation, gender identity or the expression of gender.

  • Scouting is voluntary and open to everyone who approves of its objectives and fundamental values.

  • In Finland, the target group of the movement is composed of all children and young people between 7 and 22 years of age. The activities of this group are guided and supported by adults, for whom Scouting offers opportunities for personal growth and development.

  • The openness of Scouting comprises the adaptation of the principle of equality to all activities and decision-making. This refers to for example regional, linguistic, cultural, religious and gender equality. The individual member is free to practice his or her own religion. The movement is independent, party-politically non-aligned as well as non-profit, and promotes the involvement of young people in decision-making at all levels.

For whom and in what age?

Scouting is a fun hobby that gives you many kinds of useful skills. It offers plenty of great activities such as nature trips, camps and playing and learning new things together. In Scouting children make new friends – even for the rest of their lives. This hobby is full of friendship, laughter and unforgettable experiences!

Scouting supports children’s growth and promotes their development as individuals and group members. Considering the environment and other people, operating in a group, learning various skills, developing the ability to solve problems and taking responsibility are important parts of the hobby. Scouting is an international movement that is open for all regardless of your language, culture, religion or background.

Weekly activities and new groups start in August, but you can join the Scouts anytime and any age starting from 4 years old.

In Scouting, children will

  • get new friends

  • participate and have an influence

  • have unforgettable camp experiences

  • get international experiences

  • have adventures and have a good time.

How do you start Scouting?

Children can start Scouting from the age of four. There is no upper age limit. Scouting takes place in local groups, and you can find one in almost every municipality in Finland. Children meet weekly in the local group, in small groups (patrols) with children of their age. The patrols are usually led by one or two adult Scouts. In the local group meetings children play, do arts and crafts and learn new skills. Every now and then the group also participates in bigger events. All Scouting activities are based on the Scouts’ youth programme, which consist of numerous activities tailored for different age groups. For example, some local groups focus on nautical, aviation or hiking activities.

Scouting is not expensive

The membership fee is about 60–80 euros per year. By paying the fee, you can participate in weekly meetings, hikes, camps and other Scouting events. The sum depends on the annual fee of the local group and the Guide and Scout district. Small participation fees are also collected for hikes and camps. Families with more than one child in the Scouts get a discount from the membership fee. Usually you can also apply for a scholarship for camps.

For adults, too!

You can start Scouting also as an adult. No previous experience is needed. The Scouts offer plenty of activities and various volunteer tasks for adults.

Family Scouting

Some local groups also offer Family Scouting for children under seven and their parents. The purpose is to familiarize children with Scouting and give families positive nature experiences. Family Scouting is a great hobby for the whole family and an opportunity to meet other parents regularly.

What are the basic gear I need in scout trips and camps?

Usually before every event we send you a list of gear to take with you. Please put names on every gear. It helps us to find the owner of the lost and found stuff.

  • A scout scarf

  • A backpack or a large bag, which the scout can easily carry

  • Sleeping bag and sleeping madrass

  • Drinking bottle

  • Cutlery: two large and deep enough plates, a fork, a knife and a spoon. All packed in a linen pouch.

  • Pen and paper

  • A compass, a flashlight and a knife

  • Clothing suitable to the weather and nature. Also spare clothes. Remember water resistancy, warmth and outdoor use.

  • Personal hygiene equipment: a towel, a toothbrush etc.

  • Personal medicine. Advise the leaders if the scout needs supervising.

  • Small amount of plaster and first aid material

When you pack your gear please be sure that they all fit in the bag or backpack. Loose small bags tend to get lost. Be sure that all the stuff is packed in waterproof smaller bags. Pack the gear with the scout. For this there are two major reasons. First the kid learns to pack and secondly the kid knows what is in the bag. The main principle is that a scout carries his gear.

Who is responsible for the troop activities?

When we arrange overnight trips, camps or bigger events there will always be trained scout leaders on site. Weekly meetings for squirrels and cubs are always an adult's responsibility. With adults we mean in this context a person over 18 years. He or she is also trained for the task.

Adventurer's group guide is a teenager who has training for the task and is always supervised by an adult trainer. Trackers, explorers and rovers have their own group trainers.

The troop is managed by a board. Chairman of the board is called a troop leader. Troop leader has 5-7 members in his board. Our troop has eight members.

We have two annual assemblies. Spring meeting in March to close up the last year and Autumn meeting in November to decide what is happening in next year and to elect the Board. Scouts over 15 years have the right to vote in these annual assemblies.

Who supports scouting?

Olarin Eräkotkat - Wild Eagles ry is a registered legal entity. Lippukunta on itsenäinen rekisteröity yhdistys. We have two main supporters. Olari parish is one. They give us the Sammalkallio club house for free. The other is Olarin Eräkotkien Kilta ry. The guild supports us economically and is the owner of the Kotkanpesä scout hut.

We get support from the City of Espoo and some scout organizations.

Our own active income is from the Christmas calendar sales. It is a very important tool to fund annual activities, trainers education, supplies to weekly meetings and communication costs. Our events, trips and camps are net profit operations.

If you have economical difficulties please do not hesitate to contact the troop leader. We have different kinds of scholarships and support to relieve the costs of scouting.

What is The Scout Promise and motto?

I promise to do my best to live for the good of my country and the world, to develop my spiritual beliefs and worldview and fulfill the ideals of the <age group> every day.

The Scout Promise and Ideals describe the fundamental values of the movement in a concise manner that is easily understood by young people. Making the Scout Promise means that one voluntarily strives to commit oneself to the values of Scouting.

The Ideals are based on Robert Baden-Powell’s original Scout Law and the Promise has been derived from the original Scout Promise.

The Motto of a Scout is Be prepared

What are the Scout Ideals?

  • To respect others

  • To love and protect the environment

  • To be reliable

  • To build friendship across boundaries

  • To feel one’s responsibility and to take action

  • To develop oneself as a human being

  • To search for truth in life