Second press release – Euromoot: different numbers, history and stories

The 5000 young people from more than twenty countries who will participate in Euromoot (27 Ju-ly to 3 August) belong to the UIGSE-FSE, the international organisation gathering all the Guides and Scouts of Europe associations. The Union Internationale des Guides et Scouts d’Europe – Fédération du Scoutisme Européen (UIGSE-FSE) was recognised by the Pontifical Council for the Laity on 26 August 2003 as a private association of the faithful of Pontifical Right and on 12 March 1980 by the Council of Europe, where the Union now holds participatory status. The movement, which has about 70,000 members, is present in the following countries: Austria, Bela-rus, Belgium, Canada, Czech Republic, France, Germany, Italy, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Mexico, Netherlands, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Russia, Slovakia, Spain, Switzerland, Ukraine, and Unit-ed Kingdom. The largest national associations are located in France, Italy and Poland.
The UIGSE-FSE includes associations of Catholic faith and, in a spirit of ecumenical openness, welcomes Protestant associations and associations belonging to the Orthodox Church. This is the case in Canada, Germany (with Protestant associations) or Romania and Russia (with Orthodox as-sociations or units). Each group of the UIGSE-FSE belongs to a Christian Church and welcomes members of this confession. In 1994, the Holy Father John Paul II welcomed 7500 young Guides and Scouts of Europe in Saint Peter’s Basilica; this event and the encouraging words of this great Saint constitute today the spiritual treasure of the Federation of Scouting in Europe.
The Euromoot, an international gathering of Guides and Scouts of Europe from the age of 17, will enable thousands of young people from different countries to make international friends through Scouting activities and the rediscovery of their common cultural roots. The figures are impressive, as shows the participation summary: Argentina (20), Belarus (39), Belgium (139), Brazil (7), Bul-garia (6), Canada (13), Czech Republic (6), France (837), Germany (56), Italy (2498), Lithuania (37), Mexico (6), Poland (453), Portugal (20), Romania (31), Russia (10), Slovakia (32), Switzer-land (59), Turkey (3) and Ukraine (27). Additionally, more than 250 volunteers will make support the organisation of this international event.
During the hiking week, the young people will discover that the true European heritage is the abil-ity to live together in peace around a common goal, which is Christ. We remind you that Italy and Rome are the final destination of the Euromoot where the Guides and Scouts of Europe will meet for the audience with Pope Francis.


What are the motivations of these young people? Let us listen to their own words.

An Italian guide from Albino

Why did you decide to participate in the Euromoot?
I have chosen to participate in the Euromoot because I think it will be an opportunity to take the measure of our Italian Scout association and our European Federation and to meet people who, like me, share scout life and ideals, but in other countries, with different characteristics and tradi-tions.

What do you expect from these days?
First of all, I expect an experience of sharing and mutual enrichment, of getting to know our Euro-pean brothers and sisters better. Secondly, I expect intense days, not only in terms of the efforts of walking and outdoor living, but also on a spiritual level.

What does it mean for you to be a Guide of Europe, in your daily life, with your friends, in your studies or at home?
For me, being a Guide of Europe means trying to live the ideals of scouting in my daily choices and always trying to respect the Scout Law and the promise I made. It helps me a lot in my rela-tionships with others. The Euromoot will be an opportunity to experiment how these same ele-ments can help us to live fraternity even with people from other countries.

An Italian Scout from Rome

Why did you decide to participate in Euromoot?
I have chosen to participate in this great meeting of the Scouts of Europe, hoping to live an intense experience with other young people of my age, who come from far away, who have other cultures, but share the same faith.

What do you expect from these days?
I can’t wait to be there! I expect a lot from this experience: walking with my European brothers, sharing moments of community between the twinned groups and, on these occasions, exchange opinions and experiences with the people who will be with me. Thus, what I expect is to go home enriched by this event.

What does it mean for you to be a Scout of Europe, in your daily life, with your friends, in your studies or at home?
Being a Scout in general and a Scout of Europe in particular allows me to have a different vision of life, to live with faith and to better understand the needs of others. Therefore I want to help those in need, starting with those who are close to me every day: my family, my student friends, the less happy people to whom life does not smile.

A Belgian guide leader
What is the educational purpose of the Euromoot?
One of the basic reasons for the creation of the Guides and Scouts of Europe in 1956 was to pro-mote a culture of peace. Allowing young people from all countries to meet in a positive and con-structive atmosphere builds lasting links between young people from different countries and allows them to discover the differences and qualities of others. When you are used to meet young people from other countries, you are less afraid of what you don’t know. We also learn, whether in a small team or in a large gathering like this one, to build together a road programme, a convivial activity, etc. despite the challenges of multiculturality, divergence of points of view and multilingualism. This is one of the reasons why in the Euromoot not everything is organised by the central event or-ganisation: each group has been left with a great deal of autonomy, while at the same time requir-ing twinning. We live the same Scouting in our different home countries, with the same codes, laws, uniforms and ceremonies, but above all with the same values and ideals: This greatly facili-tates dialogue and encounter. And the opportunity to experience a huge international camp abroad is a great motivation for young people aged 17-18!

Is the Scout education method still relevant in today’s world? What is the most important chal-lenge?
Of course this method is still relevant today! The best argument is to see the young people grow and flourish thanks to it. I would say that the greatest challenges of our time are a great lack of au-tonomy and a lack of sense of concreteness. The consumer society and access to screens make it possible to obtain everything instantly. Through its community life in which responsibility is taken and through the contact with nature, scouting provides valuable answers to these deficiencies. A ranger (= elder guide starting from the age of 17) learns to make choices and to attend the scout activities, which is extremely difficult to obtain in times where everybody is extremely busy and where social networks have made it possible to invite or refuse an invitation on the same day. A ranger learns to plan an activity in advance by being attentive to all the concrete aspects rather than looking at the exact address on her smartphone with the 4G and following her GPS. A ranger learns to manage an interpersonal discussion without being able to escape the discussion by ignor-ing the person on Facebook. A ranger learns to make efforts and to keep on going even if life in the nature is not as comfortable as she would have liked. In short, it is probably not the only one, but it is a method that offers a very pertinent answer to current crises.

Being an FSE scout and also a scout leader is certainly a demanding choice: why did you choose to do it?
Being a Guide of Europe is indeed demanding, but Scouting activities give me so much that I am very happy to experience them. That’s a lot of what makes me live! Being a chef is even more de-manding. I no longer count the days of camp and the hours of preparation in my 7 years of leader-ship. I continue to choose to give my time for the girls entrusted to me, because I see all the things that should be brought to the world, all the things that are missing in education. And because I am burning to serve to make the world a better place and if I am not able to have an impact to the whole world, at least the few girls I work with may be happier because they are more free and more at service. They will then be able to pass it on to others and take their place in the service to the world. Scouting is the instrument I know best and that allows me to contribute to it through its tools.

Quel est le but éducatif de l’Euromoot ?
Une des raisons de base de la création des guides et scouts d’Europe en 1956 était de promouvoir une culture de paix. Permettre ainsi à des jeunes de tous pays de se rencontrer dans un climat posi-tif et constructif construit des liens durables entre jeunes de différents pays, permet de découvrir les différences et les richesses des autres. Lorsqu’on a l’habitude de côtoyer des jeunes d’ailleurs, on a moins peur de l’étranger. On apprend aussi, que ce soit dans une petite équipe ou dans un grand rassemblement comme celui-là à s’adapter pour construire ensemble un programme de route, une veillée, etc malgré les défis de la multiculturalité, divergence de points de vue et le multilinguisme. C’est une des raisons pour lesquelles tout n’est pas organisé et qu’une grande autonomie a été laissée à chaque groupe, tout en obligeant à des jumelages. Le fait de vivre un même scoutisme déjà chacun dans son pays avant de se rencontrer, avec les mêmes codes, lois, uniformes et cérémonies, mais surtout avec les mêmes valeurs et idéaux, cela facilite grandement le dialogue et la rencontre. Et l‘opportunité de vivre un grand camp international à l’étranger est une grande motivation pour des jeunes de 17-18 ans !

La méthode scout est-elle toujours pertinente dans le monde d’aujourd’hui ? Quel est le plus grand défi ?
Bien sûr que cette méthode est encore actuelle ! Le meilleur argument bien sur est de voir les jeunes qui s’épanouissent grâce à elle. Mais je dirais que les plus grands défis de notre temps sont un grand manque d’autonomie et de sens du concret. La société de consommation et l’accès aux écrans permet de tout obtenir instantanément. Le scoutisme, par sa vie de groupe dans lequel on prend des responsabilités et le contact avec la nature donne des réponses précieuses à ces carences. Une guide-ainée apprend la fidélité aux activités, chose extrêmement difficile à obtenir alors qu’elle est extrêmement sollicitée et que les réseaux sociaux ont permis d’inviter ou de refuser une invitation le jour même. Une guide-ainée apprend à planifier une activité à l’avance en étant atten-tive à tous les aspects concrets plutôt qu’à regarder au moment même sur son smartphone avec la 4G quelle était l’adresse précise et suivre son gps. Une guide-ainée apprend à gérer une discussion interpersonnelle sans pouvoir s’enfuir de la discussion en ignorant la personne sur Facebook. Une guide-ainée apprend à mordre sur sa chique lorsque la nature n’est pas aussi confortable qu’elle l’aurait souhaité. Bref, ce n’est sans doute pas la seule, mais c’est une méthode qui offre une ré-ponse très complète aux crises actuelles.

Faire du scoutisme et être un chef scout est sûrement un choix exigeant : Pourquoi as-tu fait ce choix ?
Être guide d’Europe est en effet exigeant, mais les activités scoutes apportent tellement de choses que je suis très heureuse de les vivre. C’est une bonne partie de ce qui me fait vivre ! Être chef est encore plus exigeant. Je ne compte plus les journées de camp et les heures de préparation des 7 années de chef. Mais si je continue à choisir de donner mon temps pour les filles qui me sont con-fiées, c’est que je vois toutes les choses qu’il faudrait apporter au monde, toutes les choses qui manquent dans l’éducation et que je brûle de servir pour rendre le monde meilleur et pour que, faute du monde entier, les quelques filles que je pourrai toucher soient plus heureuses parce que plus libres et plus au service. Elles pourront ensuite le transmettre à d’autres et prendre leur place au service du monde. Le scoutisme est l’instrument que je connais le mieux et qui me permet d’y contribuer grâce à ses outils.

Modalities of accreditation

Journalists and media operators wishing to attend the Audience of the Holy Father in the Paul VI Hall and the Holy Mass in St Peter’s Basilica must send a request to the Holy See’s Press Office through the online accreditation system at, selecting the event from the Calendar. All requests must be sent latest 48 hours before the event.

Euromoot: different numbers, history and storiesdownload


Press Office

Elena Grazini
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