In 1906 and 1907, the military officer Robert Baden-Powell wrote a book for boys about scouting, a few years later a new organisation for girls (the "guides") was created. Today, Scouting and Guiding is practiced in many countries worldwide, such as Indonesia, Uganda, France, the Philippines, Pakistan, Nigeria or Japan (via).
The Boy Scouts of America recognises a wide range of religious affiliations (e.g. Zoroastrianism, Judaism, Islam, Hinduism) (via). Recent controversy rather refers to the non-religious than to the "different"-religious. Scouting has been criticised by the National Secular Society for putting non-believers off joining. The society quotes the obligatory scout promise that includes the line "to do my duty to God".
Nevertheless, the Scout Association seems to become more accessible. It launched a new range of clothing in 2012 following requests from a growing number of Muslim girl members (via). British designer Sarah Elenany created it with the aim "to highlight how the scouts are modernising, increasing diversity and responding to members". In UK Chief Scout Bear's words: "Scouting has something to offer everyone, no matter your religion, ethnicity or belief" (via). And the non-believers? While the core Scout Promise remains in place, this year, Guide leaders said that the promise to "love my God" was discouraging some girls and volunteers from joining and decided to change it. Instead, new Guides now pledge "to be true to myself" (via).
Photos (from Wes Anderson's Moonrise Kingdom, 2012) via and via and via