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The World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts (WAGGGS) is comprised of 145 member organizations, including Girl Scouts of the USA. WAGGGS not only unites all of its member organizations, but also promotes and establishes Girl Guiding/Girl Scouting organizations around the world. The goal of WAGGGS is to enable girls and young women to develop their fullest potential as responsible citizens of the world.
Headquartered at the World Bureau in London, WAGGGS also owns and operates four world centers. Girl Guides/Girl Scouts can visit these program centers in England, India, Mexico and Switzerland.
Girl Scouts of the USA supports international friendships through contributions to WAGGGS, including a donation every year from its Juliette Low World Friendship Fund and Thinking Day Fund.
Sir Robert Baden-Powell founded the Boy Scouts in England in 1907. When girls showed up at a Boy Scout rally at Crystal Palace in 1909, Sir Robert decided that girls needed their own movement. In 1910 he and his sister, Agnes, founded the Girl Guide movement. In 1918, Sir Robert's wife, Olave, became the United Kingdom's Chief Guide, and the following year formed the International Council, which officially became the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts in 1928.
Participation Around the World
The WAGGGS constitution requires that at least two women on its board be under 30 years old, and that all World Board committees include at least one woman under 30. WAGGGS member organizations offer girls a wide range of leadership experiences, which enable them to become competent and confident leaders.
World Conference and Regional Conferences. Each triennium, WAGGGS convenes a World Conference. In 2011 the World Conference was held in Edinburgh, United Kingdom. The next World Conference will be held in Hong Kong in 2014. In addition, each of the five WAGGGS regions—Africa, Asia/Pacific, Arab region, Europe and Western Hemisphere—hold triennium conferences.
International Training Forums and Seminars. Each of the five WAGGGS regions (Africa, Asia/Pacific, Arab region, Europe and Western Hemisphere) hold training events focused on leadership development for young women. Since 1932, Juliette Low Seminars have been held twice every triennium. The seminars provide international leadership training for young women from any member organization, and provide a platform for young women to:
WAGGGS has six teams at United Nations locations around the world—Geneva, Nairobi, New York, Paris, Rome and Vienna. Each team works with UN agencies to address issues that affect girls and young women globally. GSUSA works with the WAGGGS UN team in New York.
For more information, e-mail Global Girl Scouting at firstname.lastname@example.org or call (212) 852-8049.