The Boy Scouts of America (BSA) is rallying its troops for two separate efforts to assist families devastated by recent earthquakes in Haiti. First, the BSA is joining 160 member countries of the Switzerland-based World Organization of the Scout Movement (WOSM) to collect aid and to help support relief agency partners such as the American Red Cross and The Salvation Army.
On February 1, the BSA will launch a separate relief effort to provide tents and sleeping bags to Haitian people who have been displaced from their homes. Visitors to www.scoutingfriends.org/haitianrelief can make a monetary donation or purchase selected items to send to Haiti.
Throughout its first 100 years, the BSA has been known for coming to the aid of the country and the world in times of great need. As the organization begins its second century, the need is indeed great. Fortunately, the BSA’s commitment of service to others is just as strong today as it was in 1910.
“Our motto has always been ‘Be Prepared,’ and we are living out our motto. We are prepared to help, and we hope all of our Scouting family and others will be part of this relief effort,” said Chief Scout Executive Bob Mazzuca. “It appears that many of their immediate needs for food, medical supplies, and shelter are being handled now, and we don’t want to duplicate efforts. Our collections are to help them as they begin to rebuild their lives.”
“We don’t want to get in the way of the work that is already being done in the area,” said James Turley of the WOSM. “We will house the supplies and boxes in the Dominican Republic and, when safe and advisable to do so, Dominican Republic Scouts will provide the supplies to the Haitian Scout organization to provide to the whole Haitian community.”
About the Boy Scouts of America
The Boy Scouts of America is the nation’s foremost youth program of character development and values-based leadership training. The Scouting organization is composed of 2.7 million youth members between the ages of 7 and 20, 1.1 million volunteers and nearly 300 local councils throughout the United States and its territories.
More information about 100 Years of Scouting can be found at www.scouting.org/100years.