The Republic of Geneva welcomed the World Scout Committee

On Friday, 20 March, Mr Laurent Moutinot, a Councillor of State of the Republic and Canton of Geneva, hosted a reception for the World Scout Committee in the prestigious Alabama Room at the Hôtel de Ville (Geneva’s City Hall). It was here that the Red Cross was born.

The World Organization of the World Scout Movement has been based in Geneva for 40 years. In 1969, this was a significant move. Mr Luc Panissod, the newly appointed Secretary General, highlighted the points that unite Geneva and Scouting.

Geneva is international and so is Scouting. The international expansion of the Scout Movement that began as of its earliest years was a great surprise and source of satisfaction for its founder, Lord Baden-Powell. We now know that this international dimension formed the basis of the mission of peace that Baden-Powell bequeathed. Here we touch on our second point in common: Peace.

Geneva is the city that best incarnates the ideal of peace. The League of Nations, which became the United Nations, found that Geneva had a peaceful soul and felt it a duty to offer humanitarian assistance, which was invented by the Red Cross. World Scouting naturally settled in this community of international organisations that aim to create a better world. The protocols of agreement signed with around a dozen UN agencies have enabled the Movement to serve its youth members better, particularly in countries facing unrest and in the developing world.

Finally, at the Jean-Jacques Rousseau School, following in the footsteps of Jean Piaget, researchers and academics found that Geneva was a place for experiments and discoveries in education sciences. This was behind the support that Geneva offered to the World Scientific Congress on Education that enabled the Scout Movement to reconnect with the scientific community.

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