Magyar Cserkészszövetség

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Membership badge of Magyar Cserkészszövetség, featuring the Crown of Saint Stephen

Magyar Cserkészszövetség, the primary national Scouting organization of Hungary, was founded in 1912, and became a member of the World Organization of the Scout Movement in 1990. The coeducational Magyar Cserkészszövetség has 7,198 members as of 2004.

Scouting in Hungary is maintained through Magyar Cserkészet Tanácsa, the Council of Hungarian Scouting. There are two associations in this national federation, Magyar Cserkészszövetség, the Hungarian Scout Association, and Magyar Cserkészcsapatok Szövetsége. Also serving Hungarian Scouts is Magyar Cserkészlány Szövetség, the Association of Hungarian Girl Guides.


[edit] History

Hungarian Scouting was founded in 1909 under Austria-Hungary, and the first Scout group in the dual monarchy, MCA-1912 HAS, was founded in Budapest in 1910. Scouting started in the separate nation of Hungary in 1919, at the end of World War I, when Austria and Hungary were divided. In 1920, the magazine Magyar Cserkész ("Hungarian Scout") was first published.

Hungary was a founding member of the World Scout Bureau in 1922 and later was a founding member of the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts, WAGGGS, which was in fact established in Parád, Hungary, in 1928.

In 1924, at the World Scout Jamboree in Copenhagen, Hungarian Scouts attending their first jamboree came third in the competition of the nations, behind British and American Scouts. They were especially good at water sports, astounding many as Hungary is a landlocked country.

The first Hungarian National Jamboree in 1926 had 10,000 participants.

book cover from the fourth World Jamboree in 1933

Hungary hosted the fourth World Jamboree in 1933 at the royal forest of Gödöllő, outside Budapest, in which 26,000 Scouts from 54 nations camped together. The camp chief was Teleki Pál, the member of the International Committee who later became Prime Minister of Hungary. This was the first time there was a Jamboree subcamp for Scouts taking part in aviation. To celebrate the 60th anniversary of the fourth World Jamboree, the Hungarian Scout Association hosted a fourth World Jamboree Memorial Camp at Bélapátfalva, Hungary in 1993.

After World War II, the Külföldi Magyar Cserkészszövetség started operating in the displaced persons camps in Germany and Austria in 1948 as the Teleki Pál Scout Association, renamed in 1948 as the Hungarian Scout Association.

[edit] Rebirth of Scouting in Hungary

Scouting was well organized and popular in Hungary until it was banned in 1948. Scouting was officially abolished by the Communist regime in 1948, but remained nascent underground in a situation similar to that of neighboring Czechoslovakia. Even in those decades when Scouting was banned, former Scouts kept the spirit of Scouting and ran children's programs in a more or less Scout way, often risking imprisonment. Meanwhile, émigré Hungarians in the west were able to keep the organization going. For them, Scouting gave an excellent opportunity to teach their children about their homeland.

In 1989, as civic organizations could be organized or reorganized, Scouting was again legalized, and that same day Scouting groups appeared as though spontaneously, surprising many by the energy of this quick resurgence. Later in 1989, the Külföldi Magyar Cserkészszövetség returned the Association's original seal to Hungary and gave it to the new reorganized Hungarian Scout Association. In 1990, Hungary was the first of the Eastern European nations to return to membership in the World Organization of Scout Movement, reorganized and registered with 20,000 members and recognized as a full member.

A new feature of Magyar Cserkészszövetség is that it is not town-oriented, as it was before World War II. Scout troops are organized in more and more villages, where Scouting gives almost the only opportunity for many children to be part of a youth program. In the original Magyar Cserkészszövetség, groups belonged mainly to schools, now they more often are attached to church parishes.

Magyar Cserkészszövetség is also no longer single sex, as the educational system is co-educational. It was decided that the units or patrols would be single-sex, but troops would consist of boys' and girls' patrols.

Due to the communist period, Magyar Cserkészszövetség has much less property than it used to, but it already has its own Scout Camp on the outskirts of Budapest. This property was obtained by the Association as a long term lease, because former Scouts lobbied the forestry commission for it saying it would be of better use as a Scout camp than as a golf course. This Scout camp is open to visiting Scouts, who have donated their time, energy and financial means to improve the infrastructure of the park.

In 1991, 20 Scouts of the Magyar Cserkészszövetség participated in the World Jamboree in Korea; and in 1995, 70 Scouts represented Hungarian Scouting in the World Jamboree in the Netherlands. At the end of 2004, there were 7,198 registered members in all sections.

Participant badge of the 1933 World Scout Jamboree

[edit] Program Sections

  • Cub Scouts-ages 6-11 years
  • Scouts-ages 11-16 years
  • Rovers-ages 16-21 years

The Scout Motto is "Légy Résen", translating as "Be Prepared" in Magyar. The Girl Guide Motto is "Jó Munkát". The Magyar noun for a single Scout is Cserkész.

[edit] Other Hungarian Scout organizations

National badge of Magyar Cserkészszövetség

Other Hungarian Scout organizations include

[edit] Hungarian Scouting abroad

A number of associations offers Scouting to people of Hungarian descent living abroad from Hungary. They form two groups:

  • Külföldi Magyar Cserkészszövetség - Hungarian Scout Association in Exteris (Scouts-in-Exile)
  • local associations in the adjacent countries serving the Hungarian minorities.

The two international recognised Hungarian associations, the Scouts in Exteris and the minority associations are members of the International Forum of Hungarian Scouting.

[edit] Külföldi Magyar Cserkészszövetség - Hungarian Scout Association in Exteris

In addition to Scouting inside Hungary, the Magyar Cserkészszövetség maintains strong ties to Scouting organizations for ethnic Hungarian youth in the Vojvodina region of Serbia, Slovakia, Ukraine, and Romania, as well as to Külföldi Magyar Cserkészszövetség, the Hungarian Scout Association in Exteris (alternately translated Hungarian Scout Association Abroad), an organization which kept Scouting alive outside Hungary and Eastern Europe through the years of the Cold War.

Hungarian Scouting outside Hungary remains an important element in the lives of several large ethnic Hungarian communities in neighboring countries. The tradition of Hungarian Scouting is accepted by several other National Scouting organizations in their own countries. The Hungarian Scout Association in Exteris is a strong supporter of Scouting in Hungary since its reemergence in 1989.

Mr. Bodnár Gábor (b. 1920) has led the Külföldi Magyar Cserkészszövetség since 1945. As a young Scoutmaster he started organizing troops in Germany with several Scout friends (referred to them collectively as the Countryless Eagles). Mr. Bodnár is still active as General Secretary.

In the early 1950s, the Displaced Persons (DPs), refugees from World War II and the new Communist regimes in Eastern Europe started emigrating to various overseas countries. The first overseas troop was founded in 1950 in Rio De Janeiro (the troop has since disbanded). Two troops in Caracas, Venezuela are still active. After Brazil and Venezuela, troops were founded in the United States, Canada, Australia, and other countries. The organization grew from about 1000 members in the early 1950s to over 6000 members in the late 1970s.

Today, the Külföldi Magyar Cserkészszövetség is 4500 strong and has 70 troops in five active districts worldwide, the largest district being District III.

Külföldi Magyar Cserkészszövetség maintains four councils in District III:

Typically, there is a Boy Scout and Girl Guide troop in most cities that have substantial Hungarian populations, either closely affiliated with or actually operating most Hungarian weekend schools around the world.

In 1998 Külföldi Magyar Cserkészszövetség held 50th anniversary celebrations and held Jamborees in Fillmore, New York, Germany, and near Melbourne, Australia. The South American troops held their Jamboree late in 1996. Külföldi Magyar Cserkészszövetség bases their work on carrying out obligations at four levels - God, their adopted countries, their fellow man and the Hungarian nation.

Külföldi Magyar Cserkészszövetség is tied closely with the Hungarian Scouts Association in Hungary, and with the independent Hungarian Scout Associations organized in the Hungarian minority areas in neighboring Slovakia, Subcarpathian Ukraine, Romania, and Serbia-Montenegro. Each of these countries has significant Hungarian minorities, and Scouting makes it possible for them to learn more about their own heritage, language and culture. Since the advent of democracy, Külföldi Magyar Cserkészszövetség has trained almost 500 Scoutmasters and assistant Scoutmasters for these brother associations. The World Organization of the Scout Movement maintains ties and provides support to the reemerging Scouting movements in the countries of their birth.

[edit] Associations for Hungarian minorities abroad

All of the following associations have strong ties to Magyar Cserkészszövetség. Some of them are direct members of the Hungarian association.

  • Croatia: Horvátországi Magyar Cserkészszövetség (HZMCSSZ)
  • Romania: Romániai Magyar Cserkészszövetség (RMCSSZ)
  • Serbia/Vojvodina: Vajdasági Magyar Cserkészszövetség (VMCSSZ)
  • Slovakia: Szlovákiai Magyar Cserkészszövetség (SZMCS)
  • Ukraine: Kárpátaljai Magyar Cserkészszövetség (KáMCSSZ)

[edit] International Scouting units in Hungary

In addition, there are USA Girl Scouts Overseas in Budapest, serviced by way of USAGSO headquarters in New York; as well as Cub Scouts and Boy Scouts linked to the Horizon District of the Transatlantic Council of the Boy Scouts of America, which supports units in west-and-central Europe, the Near East and North Africa.

[edit] See also


[edit] References

[edit] External links

This information was distilled from an article written by Imre Lendvai-Lintner, Executive Director of the Hungarian Scouts in Exile; WOSM newsletters; and New York Hungarian Scouts.

Members of the European Scout Region

Full members: Albania | Austria | Belgium | Bosnia and Herzegovina | Bulgaria | Croatia | Cyprus | Czech Republic | Denmark | Estonia | Finland | France | Germany | Greece | Hungary | Iceland | Ireland | Israel | Italy | Latvia | Liechtenstein | Lithuania | Luxembourg | Republic of Macedonia | Malta | Monaco | Netherlands | Norway | Poland | Portugal | Romania | San Marino | Serbia and Montenegro | Slovakia | Slovenia | Spain | Sweden | Switzerland | Turkey | United Kingdom
Countries without Scouting: Andorra

Image:Scoutsexilebadge.jpg Scouts-in-Exile

Historic Scouts-in-Exile: Armenia | Belarus | Cambodia | Czech Republic | Estonia | Latvia | Lithuania | Poland | Russian Federation | Slovakia | Slovenia
Present-day Scouts-in-Exile: Bosnia and Herzegovina | Cuba | Hungary | Laos | Ukraine | Vietnam

hu:Magyar Cserkészszövetség

Magyar Cserkészszövetség

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