Scouts: Girls overtake boys in admissions
16 April BBC
For the first time ever, more girls than boys have joined the Scout
Association in one year.
4,330 girls and 3,796 boys joined between January 2010 and January
2011.Female youth membership has seen a 6.9% rise in the past year and
an 88% rise since 2005.Announcing the publication of its annual
membership figures for 2011, the Scout Association said that it now had
a waiting list of nearly 33,500.
Some areas have seen a particularly high number of girls join up, the
association added. For example, more than twice as many girls as boys
have signed up in Cambridgeshire.
But despite this growth, boys in the scouts still outnumber girls by
over five to one.
Total membership, which includes adult members, has grown 14% from
444,059 in 2005 to 507,867 this year. 'No surprise' - There are now
66,576 girls in the scouting movement, compared with 35,406 in 2005.
This increase stands in comparison to a 7.7% rise for boys, from
321,210 to 346,043.
The association, which has allowed girls to join the top age range
since 1976, says it needs more adult scout leaders to cope with the
In 1990 girls were allowed to join all age ranges in some UK scout
groups, but it was not until 2007 that the association ruled that girls
may join any UK scout group, in any age range. Chief Scout Bear Grylls
said he thought it was "great" that more girls were joining. "Being a
Scout represents all that is great about life: adventure, life skills
and friendship," he added.
"It is no surprise that so many girls are wanting to be part of
that."Girlguiding UK, a separate organisation for girls and young women
only, says it has about half a million members, including about 100,000