The Swedish Temperance Guide and Scout Association is one of the five guide and scout associations in Sweden and has about 6000 members. The first scout patrols were founded in 1926. From the beginning both boys and girls were members of the Swedish Temperance Guide and Scout Association.
The Temperance Guide and Scout Association is not only connected to the Swedish Guide and Scout Council, but also to the Temperance Movement. Many of the guide and scout associations in Sweden were founded by an already existing organization, for example the YMCA, the YWCA, the Salvation Army and the Temperance Movement.
The aim of the Swedish Temperance Guide and Scout Association is to give the members:
• basic moral values
• democratic education
• international understanding
• interest in the nature and responsibility for a good environment
• a personal standpoint against all kinds of drugs, including alcohol
With this aim the Swedish Temperance Guide and Scout Association wants to fulfil the mission of scouting "to contribute to the education of young people, through a value system based on the Scout Promise and Law, to help build a better world where people are self-fulfilled as individuals and play a constructive role in society."
As a member of the Swedish Temperance Guide and Scout Association you make a promise of total abstinence. We help build a better world by not only working for democracy, a good environment and international understanding, but also by creating a strong civil society without drugs. Scouting is a drug free environment where young people are given the strength and role models, to say no to drugs.
Each age group in the Temperance Guide and Scout Association has discussions and are given information to motivate the scouts to live without alcohol and other drugs. The objective is to give knowledge of what drugs do, arguments for total abstinence, support for a personal commitment and strength to influence others. Members of this association are to have made the promise of total abstinence by the time they turn twelve.
As scouts, children and youth take the responsibility of developing and working together in small groups (patrols) and learn by doing. Children and youth get the chance to learn and practice democratic leadership.
Outdoor life is a big part of scouting. Nature requires you to plan, perform and gain knowledge. In the nature scouts meet challenges, which set high demands on teamwork and preparation. Because we spend a considerable time of our activities in the nature, children are taught to think about environmental issues and to have respect for nature and all living creatures on earth.
Guiding and Scouting are big movements throughout the world and there are many international camps. Today, there are close to 38 million guides and scouts in the whole world. When we are abroad on a scout camp it is very common that we spend some days before or after the camp living in the home of another scout family. And when scouts from abroad visit Sweden, we welcome them to our homes. Many scouts have witnessed the incredible welcoming with which scout families receive other scouts they have never met before. These experiences build friendships for life and thus international understanding.
Local scout groups are called scout units. The Temperance Guide and Scout Association has about 6,000 members and about 100 scout units. The majority of the scout units have activities for several age groups from 8 to 18 years of age. Children and youth have adult leaders, but all planning is done together and the activities are the result of childrens´ ideas, desires and needs. Scout units meet on a weekly basis and take camping trips on weekends and holidays.
In the weekly meetings they learn the skills that they will require when they are out in nature or in everyday society. Wood firing, first aid and crafts are some common activities.