Israel Boy and Girl Scouts Federation
|Israel Boy and Girl Scouts Federation|
|Affiliation||World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts
World Organization of the Scout Movement
The Israel Boy and Girl Scouts Federation (Hebrew: התאחדות הצופים והצופות בישראל, Hit'ahdut HaTzofim VeHaTzofot BeYisrael) is Israel's national Scouting organization, known in Hebrew as Tzofim. Some 80,000 boys and girls belong to Tzofim in Israel.
The first Tzofim groups were founded in 1919. The Israeli Scouts movement became a member of the World Organization of the Scout Movement in 1951, after the establishment of the State of Israel. The first Girl Guide units were also established in 1919; the respective federation became a member of the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts in 1963.
In 2009, Tzofim celebrated its 90th birthday. To mark the occasion, Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu met members of Tzofim at his office, where he told stories of his youth in the Modi'in troop in Jerusalem.
Tzofim is a non-political organization but upholds Zionist and Jewish values. Scout troops in Israel have always been coeducational. The federation in Israel consists of Jewish, Muslim Arab, Christian Arab, and Druze troops. Tzofim is open to everyone regardless of race, color, creed, or socio-economic standing. Israeli scouts come from all sectors of Israeli society.
The Israel Scouts are divided into eight regional hubs: Jerusalem, Central, Tel Aviv, Ayalon, Sharon, South, North, and Tzabar (North America and Western Europe). The scout troop is called a shevet, or tribe. In the large cities, there may be several clubhouses in different neighborhoods. Most towns and kibbutzim also have scouts dens.
There are two advanced scouting programs: The Wood Badge, held every 2 years for adult scouts, and the Aryeh Croch Israeli Scouting Badge, held annually for 11th and 12th grade scouts. Most of the federation's programs and activities are held in the Scouts Ranch in the north of Israel. Tzofim runs a special project for children with physical and mental disabilities called Broshim (Evergreens). Tzofim maintains an active partnership with the German Verband Christlicher Pfadfinderinnen und Pfadfinder, including exchange visits by leadership delegations and international events.
The members of the federation are:
- Hebrew Scouts Movement in Israel - 60,000 members
- Arab School Scouts Association - 13,000 members
- Arab and Druze Scouts Movement, which includes:
- Israel Arab Scouts Association - 2,000 members
- Catholic Scout Association in Israel - 3,000 members
- Israel Druze Scouts Association - 5,000 members
- Christian Orthodox Scout Association - 2,000 members
- Sea Scouting: Sea Scouting in Israel
- Sredni, Yonatan (June 2008). "Scout’s Honor?". Jewish Magazine.
- The Israel Boy & Girl Scouts Federation Hebrew Scouts website
- The Hebrew Scouts Movement in Israel (Hebrew)
- Friends of Israel Scouts, Inc. - Tzofim
- Catholic Scout Association in Israel
- Christian Orthodox Scout Association