Yugoslav Boy Scout Uniforms


Figure 1.-


Yugoslavia today includes the republics of Serbia and Montenegro. Serbia and Montenegro first gain independence at the Congress of Berlin in 1878. Joint Kingdom of Serbs, Croats and Slovenes created in 1918 at the end of the First World War.

The first Scout units in whay is now Yugoslavia were founded in 1911 in Serbia. Scouting was established in Yugoslavia in 1919. Yugoslavia was a founding association of the World Organization of the Scout Movement in 1922. King Alexander of Serbia assumes sovereign powers and renames the state, Yugoslavia in 1929.

Germany launches a devesatu\ing surprise attack on Yugoslavia in 1941. Rival resistance groups form: Chetniks (Serb Royalists) and Partisans (communist, under Tito). The Association ceased its activities in 1941 when the German occupation forces ordered the Scouts to diband.

The Federal Republic of Yugoslavia established in 1945. The Coomunist partisan leader, Marshall Tito is Prime Minister. The Communists disband the Scouting Movement. WOSM recognition withdrawn.

The European Community recognizes independence of Croatia, Slovenia, and Bosnia-Herzegovina in 1992. Yugoslavia welcomed as the 137th member of the World Organization in 1995. Originally one of the founding members of the World Organization, Savez Izvidjaca Jugoslavije remained active for a period in the former Federal Socialist Republic of Yugoslavia.

Following the dissolution, in 1991, of the socialist state into a number of sovereign entities (including Croatia and Slovenia, where Scout Associations have also been recognized), Savez Izvidjaca Jugoslavije now operates in the sovereign State of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia, comprising the republics of Serbia and Montenegro. Its membership presently stands at over 12,000. Because of the extreme complexity of the political situation and the intensive media coverage resulting therefrom, the World Scout Committee has been particularly careful in its consideration of the application of Savez Izvidjaca Jugoslavije for membership, and has worked closely with the association during the last 2 years.

Despite ongoing conflicts in the area, the staff of the World Scout Bureau have undertaken a series of extended visits which confirmed that the association is doing excellent work under very difficult circumstances. In the context of the prevailing situation in the Balkan area, the association is very active in social work for all segments of the population, without distinction. It cooperates closely with the Red Cross in providing aid to refugees, opportunities for the disabled, help for orphans and general aid to areas in crisis. In the true spirit of Scouting, Savez Izvidjaca Jugoslavije provides a much needed model of tolerance and respect for differences - which can be the only basis for peace in this part of the world.

The Savez Izvidjaca Jugoslavije/The Yugoslav Scout Association is a voluntary, independent, nonpolitical and social organization of children, youth and adults. It provides its members a versatile development of their physical, intellectual and spiritual potentials. This organization is a demonstration of young people's needs and a necessity of the community.


Savez Izvidjaca Jugoslavije performs its activities throughout the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia. It includes the Scout Organization of Serbia and the Scout Organization of Montenegro. The Association has approximately 27,000 members in 207 Scout Groups and independent units.

The Association claims it welcomes everybody regardless of ethnic or religious affiliation. The membership of Savez Izvidjaca Jugoslavije includes Serbians, Montenegrians, Hungarians, Slovaks, Romanians, Albanians, Muslims and others - Christian Orthodox, Catholics, Protestants, Muslims etc. Given the etnic animosities fueld by the Serbian Giovernment, it is unclear just how Yugoslav Scouts handle ethnic diversity.

Every citizen of the Federal Republic of Yugoslavia can become a member of the Savez Izvidjaca Jugoslavije if he or she accepts the Programme of the Association and acts in accordance with the Scout Laws and regulations of the Constitution of Savez Izvidjaca Jugoslavije and is active in his or her unit and in the Association.

According to their age the members are divided into the following categories. The common term for all members is "izvidjac" (meaning "scout".
Cub Scouts: Lower grades of primary school.
Scouts and Guides: higher grades of primary school.
Venture Scouts and Guides: Secondary schools, up to the age of 20. Adults: Older than 20.


One of the most important symbols of Scouting is a uniform. It is worn on actions and events. The Yugoslav Scout uniform consists of a cap (dark-blue with the symbol of the Savez Izvidjaca Jugoslavije), shirt (violet for Cub Scouts, green for Scouts and Guides, khaki for Venture Scouts, dark blue for Sea Scouts and light blue for Air Scouts), dark blue trousers (shorts or regular; a skirt or trousers for Guides), a dark blue belt with the symbol of Savez Izvidjaca Jugoslavije on the buckle, neckerchief (in the color of the unit) and dark blue socks. In international events all Scouts are to wear a violet neckerchief with the edges colored like Yugoslav flag and Yugoslav coat of arms in the corner.

Christopher Wagner


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