Cercetaşii României (Romanian for "Romania's Scouts" or "Romanian Scouts"; in full Organizaţia Naţională Cercetaşii României - "National Organization of Romanian Scouts") is the primary national Scouting organization of Romania. Founded in 1914, it became a member of the World Organization of the Scout Movement (WOSM) in 1993.
The coeducational Cercetaşii României has 4,927 members as of 2004.
Romania was a founding member of the WOSM, having formally had Scouts between 1914 and 1937. The first patrol of Boy Scouts was established in Romania in 1912, thanks to a group of professors, physicians, soldiers, etc. (Gheorghe Munteanu-Murgoci, Alexandru Borza, Vladimir Ghidionescu, Constantin Costa-Foru, Nicolae Iorga, Ion G. Duca and Colonel G. Berindei) who were familiar with the Scout movements in the United Kingdom, France, Belgium, and Germany.
The translation of Baden-Powell's book Scouting for Boys into Romanian was published in 1915. That same year saw the official founding of the Cercetaşii României; on the occasion, Lord Baden-Powell sent a message of congratulations, with the admonition that Scouting should be adapted to the local situation.
During World War I, Romanian Scouts were very active in defense activities (see Romanian Campaign (World War I)). Ecaterina Teodoroiu guided a patrol of Scouts and Guides and was employed as a nurse, before joining the Romanian Army and dying a heroine. Many Scouts who helped the transporting of the wounded were killed during the air attacks. On September 29, 1916 Baden-Powell sent a message expressing regret to the Scouts for the death of their fellows. At the end of the war, the Boy Scouts marched in the front of the Victory Train, under the Triumphal Arch in Bucharest.
In 1920, 67 Romanian Boy Scouts and their leaders were present at the first World Jamboree in London, England. Before World War II, the Scout Movement developed further: many patrols were formed in towns and in villages, many camps, socials, expeditions and spectacles were organized, and a great number of magazines, literary writings and pedagogical studies were published for Scouts and their Chiefs. At the time, one of the devoted Boy Scouts was the philosopher Mircea Eliade.
In 1930, the first Romanian Scout Jamboree took place, in the presence of Hubert Martin and many delegations of Scouts and Guides from other countries. Cercetaşii României had 45,000 members at that point, and the Guides Movement had 14,000. The organizer and Chief of the Guides Movement was Princess Ileana, the daughter of Queen Marie.
Later, when the extremist movements (fascism and communism) divided the young generation, the Scout Movement remained an oasis of democracy, tolerance, peace and fraternity. Romanian Scouting preserved its apolitical character, but in 1937, it was replaced by a totalitarian organization, Străjeria, as part of the dictatorial measures initiated by King Carol II (alongside the creation of the National Renaissance Front). After the World War, there were attempts to restore the Scout Movement in Romania, but the emergence of the communist regime brought a ban on all alternative youth movements (see Pioneer movement in Romania and Union of Communist Youth#Pioneers).
After the Revolution of 1989, former Scouts and others, despite the difficult conditions, acted for the revival of Scouting in Romania. Cercetaşii României was again established in 1991, and in 1993 gained recognition by the World Bureau of the WOSM. In 2006, there are more than 2,000 registered Scouts.
Ideals and program
- Spiriduşi: Elves/Cubs-8 to 11
- Temerari: Pioneers/Scouts-12 to 14
- Exploratori: Explorers/Venturers-15 to 18
- Seniori: Seniors/Rovers-18 to 21
The Scout Motto is "Gata Oricând", translating as "Always Prepared" in Romanian; the Romanian noun for a single Scout is Cercetaş.
Promit pe onoarea mea să fac tot ce este posibil pentru, a servi patria mea România şi credinţa mea Dumnezeu, a ajuta pe aproapele meu în orice moment, a mă supune Legii Cercetaşului.
- I promise on my honour to do all that is in my power in order to: Serve my country, Romania, and my belief, Help my fellow man in any moment, Respect the Scout Law, So help me God.
Cercetaşul îşi iubeşte patria sa, România şi pe toţi cei care trăiesc in ea
Cercetaşul este loial, îşi respectă cuvântul dat, nu minte, este curat în gând, în vorbă şi în faptă
Cercetaşul este util şi îşi ajută semenii în orice situaţie, este un prieten pentru toţi şi frate cu toţi Cercetaşii
Cercetaşul este econom şi cumpătat, este îngăduitor cu alţii şi sever cu sine, îşi îngrijeşte corpul şi duce o viaţă sănătoasă
Cercetaşul iubeşte şi ocroteşte natura şi este bun cu animalele
Cercetaşul îşi respectă şi ascultă părinţii, şefii si profesorii şi este disciplinat în tot ceea ce face
Cercetaşul este credincios şi respectă credinţa celorlalţi
Cercetaşul este curajos şi încrezător în puterile sale, vioi şi plin de însufleţire
Cercetaşul se străduieşte să facă în fiecare zi o faptă bună, oricât de neînsemnată ar părea ea
- The Scout loves his country, Romania and all the people who live in it
- A Scout is loyal, trustworthy, he never lies; his mind and actions are clean
- A Scout makes himself useful; he helps others in any situation; he is every ones friend and the brother of all the Scouts
- A Scout is thoughtful and moderate, he is tolerant with others and severe with himself, he takes care of his body and leads a healthy life
- A Scout loves and protects nature and he is good to animals
- A Scout loves and obeys his parents, his chiefs and his teachers and he is disciplined in everything he does
- A Scout is faithful and he respects other's faith/religion
- A Scout is courageous and he trusts his own powers; he is joyful and full of life
- A Scout likes to study and he teaches others
- A Scout strives to do a good deed every day, however small it might seem
- Scouting in Romania
- Organizaţia Naţionala A Scouţilor Din Moldova
- Asociaţia Ghidelor şi Ghizilor din România