The World Scout Foundation, WSF, was inaugurated on 14th February 1969 but reorganized in the current form in 1977. WSF is an international non-profit institution, incorporated under Swiss law, and based in Geneva (Switzerland). The purpose of which is to develop World Scouting by the provision of financial and other support to help develop the World Scout Movement through the World Organization of the Scout Movement (WOSM).
The WSF started its life with a capital of US$ 10,000 and this has now risen to over US$ 84 Million despite economic down turns, enabling annual grants to be made to the WSB to foster and develop young people through Scouting.
- First grant of US$ 180,000 made to WSB in 1980/81.
- The average yearly grant, over the past five years, made to the WSB has been US$ 2.6 Million.
- The WSF also encourages programmes such as “Gifts for Peace” (2007) and "Messengers of Peace" which started in 2012 and will unfold internationally to build a better world through education, understanding, tolerance and respect for others, given by Scouts in the form of community projects to other young people and their communities.
His Majesty Carl XVI Gustaf (Carl Gustaf Folke Hubertus), The King of Sweden, has been the Honorary President and Honorary Chairman since 1977. His Majesty became a Scout in 1956 and he has remained involved since. At that time His Majesty said:
“I have been keenly aware of the moral and educational values of this volunteer movement. It has been with conviction and pride that I have accepted the invitation of the World Scout Foundation to help foster the expansion of Scouting around the globe. Each of us bears a personal responsibility for tomorrow. Scouting is a fine way of preparing for the challenge of the future, and I shall be grateful to all who are prepared to join me in contributing to the promotion of World Scouting.”
Relationship with WOSM
The World Scout Foundation has close contact and fully cooperates with WOSM having a sole objective which is to help develop Scouting and it undertakes to allocate: “not less than 85% of the annual income accruing from its endowment”; although a small portion may be retained as a safeguard against inflation or devaluation of investments, or, if necessary, to cover the costs of its own operations.