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Scouts for Sustainability

At Scouts Canada, connection with nature through outdoor exploration has always been a large part of who we are. It frames our approach to youth development and programming.  

With over a century of experience making a positive difference in the lives of youth and their communities, Scouts Canada joins the global Scouting movement in implementing the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDG).  

To further improve life on earth and the health of our planet, we believe that empowering youth leadership, resiliency and capability is crucial. That’s why Scouts Canada integrated the 17 SDGs throughout our core Canadian Path learning method, creating the Scouts for Sustainability program. Building on our approach to well-rounded development, we understand the SDGs through three areas of focus: 

  • Environment – Planet health, nature conservation and appreciation, clean energy 
  • Society – Health of humanity, education, reduced inequalities 
  • Innovation – Contributing ideas and inventions to improve society and economic growth.  

By leading fun adventures with friends and gaining new skills, Scouts discover what they’re capable of and how it connects with the planet and communities in which they live. Through Scouts for Sustainability, Scouts Canada is committed to helping today’s young leaders blaze the trail to a brighter future and a better world. 

 Our Impact

Scouts contributions to making their world a better place are immeasurable. While many of these good deeds are not tracked by Scouts Canada, their impact can be seen in some of the following ways:

Service Projects
Service Projects
Communities Impacted <br/ > <span class="notbold">since 2018</span>
Communities Impacted
since 2018
Scouts <span>practice Leave No Trace each year  </span>
Scouts practice Leave No Trace each year
  • More than 80 million trees planted across Canada since 1972, potentially absorbing up to 3.6 billion pounds of carbon annually, while also creating animal habitats, producing oxygen and offering protection to surrounding land
  • Volunteer Scouters contribute an estimated 450,000 community service hours per year 
  • There are 265 Scouts for Sustainability activities for youth to learn about and contribute to the SDGs 
  • Scouts spent 57,000 hours learning about and participating in sustainability-themed activities during Scouts Canada’s Great 8 Challenge in 2021   
  • 57 million Scouts globally are making the world’s largest coordinated youth contribution to the SDGs 
  • 2 billion community service hours have been contributed by Scouts globally toward the SDGs since 2015, halfway to a 4 billion hour goal 


Our Goals

Scouts Canada is taking sustainable action to the next level with Scouts for Sustainability, part of an unprecedented global youth effort by 57 million Scouts from National Scout Organizations around the world. Scouting’s action-oriented approach to education introduces children and youth ages 5-26 to the United Nation’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), starts the conversation about global issues and helps them take positive steps towards the shared goals of eliminating poverty, reducing inequality and fighting climate change. 

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s (IPCC) new report calls for urgent climate action, and UNICEF’s 2021 Children’s Climate Risk Index finds that one billion children globally are at extremely high risk of the impacts of climate change, underscoring that sustainable action is more important than ever. 

Our Future

As Scouts, we are committed to doing our part to make the world a better place. Working together as active global citizens, Scouts will discover they have the power to make a big impact – no matter their age.