A new report by researchers at Edinburgh and Glasgow universities has found that people who participate in the Scouts and Guides in childhood have better mental health in later life.
The report looked at data from a lifelong study of almost 10,000 people from across the UK born in November 1958. A quarter of these participants were ex-members of the Scouts or Guides, and were 15% less likely than other adults in the study to suffer anxiety and mood disorders at the age of 50.
The researchers believe that it could be the lessons in resilience and resolve learnt in the Scouts or Guides that has this lasting impact. As members, children learn skills such as self-reliance and teamwork, being active outdoors, and overcoming new challenges. It is these learnt skills and experiences at a young age that successfully boost an individual’s mental health for the future. The full research report can be found here.