SCOUTStrong® – Healthy Living Initiative

"To carry out all the duties and work of a Scout properly, a fellow has to be strong, healthy, and active. And he can make himself so if he takes a little care about it."

—Robert Baden-Powell, Scouting for Boys, 1915

Today’s youth are at risk for many unhealthy influences. As a community, we need to meet the challenge head on to help our young people make right choices, right now. There are four areas of concern that deliberately impact the health of young people:

  1. Underage Drinking
  2. Underage Tobacco Use
  3. Childhood/Youth Obesity/Physical Fitness
  4. Drug Abuse

The Boy Scouts of America has long been a proponent of healthy living for our youth. As a matter of fact, the BSA is known for its promotion of out-of-doors programs / healthy living, advancement and merit badge programs where we place an emphasis on mental and physical fitness. The BSA is in a unique position to affect change among young people.

By highlighting the existing rank advancement and merit badges that focus on these areas of healthy living, we aim to launch the Old Hickory Council SCOUTStrong initiative. This program will guide young people to make these healthy choices by:

  1. Focusing on those areas of the Scouting program that speak directly to educating young people about the dangers of the FOUR main areas of concern.
  2. Provide a way for young people to track their progress in becoming “fit” and avoiding these dangers.
  3. Joining with community partners (such as the ones below) and programs to help provide program support.


Letter to Unit Leaders

SCOUTStrong® Healthy Unit Award

Personal fitness is one of the aims of Scouting. To show a commitment to this value and earn the SCOUTStrong Healthy Unit Award, follow three healthy practices at all meetings and gatherings:

  • SNACK SMART: Serve fruits or vegetables, when you have snacks (three meetings).
  • DRINK RIGHT: Make water the main beverage (six meetings).
  • MOVE MORE: Include 15 minutes of fun physical activity (nine meetings).

Scouts can earn the SCOUTStrong Healthy Unit Award with their den, pack, troop, or crew. Click here to print out your SCOUTStrong Commitment Card.

Get Started

Record progress toward the award using the Healthy Unit Award tracker:

Bristol Scouts

Achievements for each rank that match the Healthy Unit Award activities are listed on each tracker for Cub Scouts. If you are a pack leader tracking progress toward the award, use the Boy Scout version of the tracker.


Resources to bring healthy practices to Scout meetings:



Use the links below to find information related to Your Physical Fitness, and  Your Emotional Fitness.