All about Girlscouting in Japan including menbership, program, uniforms, and activities with lots of pictures.
The page is made personally by Kimie Yokoi, a leader of Girl Scouts in Japan, and is not authorized by Girl Scouts of Japan (GSJ). All of contents here are quoted from brochures published by GSJ.

Last updated on January 19, 2006

Girl Scouting in Japan

I. General Information about GSJ
--> Look at the official home page of GSJ

(pictures: the national headquarters of GSJ in Tokyo, and Togakushi campsite in Nagano Prefecture)

II. Girl Scout Membership

1. Brownie branch (grade 1 to 3 of primary school, or aged 6 to 8)
Movement and fun.
Brownies are encouraged to help at home. They learn how to get along with others through active games, hiking and camps. They also learn about Scouting and the basics of daily life. (picture: athletic game)

2. Junior branch (grade 4 to 6 of primary school, or aged 9 to 11)
Getting along with others.
Patrol activities are the most enjoyable time in the Junior branch. By cooperating in planning and deciding on duties, they learn how to cooperate and do jobs, and they develop sense of social responsibility. (picture: experience of being the handicapped)

3. Senior branch (junior high school, or aged 12 to 14)
Finding yourself.
Girl Scouts in the Senior branch select targets from the Scout program, and improve their skills and extend their interests, while helping the other Scouts in their patrol. They develop creativity and find themselves through outdoor activities, volunteer works and other activities.

4. Ranger branch (high school, or aged 15 to 17)
Making the most of yourself and different experiences, which help them to find what suits them best for their future. They put the skills that they have learnt into practice to help others, and develop leadership skills.


Brownie, Junior, Senior and Ranger    Click icon to see bigger picture.

Camp and Adult   Click icon to see bigger picture.
5. Adult
(1) Leaders
Full leader; Women aged 20 or more (one for each branch of troop)
Assistant leader; Women aged 18 or more (any number for each branch)
A leader must love children, and should be able to train and guide them, giving suitable education for girls, as well as looking after them and letting them play.
(2) Adult Scouts
Women aged 18 or more.
Adult Scouts must understand the basic principles of Girl Scouting, they must support and encourage Scouting, and cooperate the girl's activities by contributing their skills and knowledge.
(3) Troop committee members
Troop committee members are selected from the girl's guardians (this may include their fathers). They are assigned jobs in order to help the leaders who guide the girls and to ensure that the troop runs smoothly.

Membership registered as of the end of March, 1996: about 89,000 with 1,623 troops.

III. Programme
1. Self Development
For girls to make the best use of their skills and become useful people, they must know what they can do, they must always polish their skills, and they must express themselves clearly. Participating in a wide range of Girl Scout activities gives them the chance to get to know many values, to think about the way they live, and to act with confidence. (picture: learning braille)

2. Relationship with People
Everybody's ideal is to live happily while maintaining good relations with others at many levels of society --- the family, school, the community, the country and the world. Many different activities are prepared in the Girl Scout program for girls to draw from their experiences with friends in patrols and troops to learn to live other people. to be cooperative, to be good citizens, and understand what is happening in the world, and by doing so to contribute to world peace. (picture: the gathering)

3. Enjoyment of the Out of Doors
Girl Scouts receive different sorts of outdoor training to learn how to be creative and make a comfortable life in the midst of nature, without which man could do nothing. By camping and hiking, they learn techniques that allow them to live in nature, they become aware of harmony with nature, of pollution and have to prevent it, and how man can coexist with nature through mental and physical health and sanity. Camping is an important activity with sums up daily Girl Scout life. (picture: camping)

IV. Activities--pictures from Girl Scout Calendar--
Click icons to see pictures.

Girl Scout Calendar 1999
January: Zen meditation. Concentration of your attention offers an opportunity to rediscover yourselves. Troop Gifu 22,25, photo by Tom Kishida
February: On Thinking Day. Making desserts of foreign lands, we think of sister Girl Guides/Girl Scouts. Troop Iwate 18, photo by Tom kishida
March: Measuring trees with a twig and a piece of string. "How tall is that tree?" Troop Saitama 20, photo by Katsunori Kishida
April: At the tree planting ceremony. We plant chestnut trees together. Troops in Chiba, photo by Minoru Nakajima
May: Tent-pitching drill. For the camping in summer, "Be Prepared". Troop Chiba 39, photo by Minoru Nakajima
June: Getting involved with the community. Let our Movement known to the people around us. Troops in Nara, photo by Katsunori Kishida
July: Making s'mores with participants from abroad at the camp. Friendship Circle gets bigger and bigger. Troop Chiba 64, photo by Tom Kishida
August: The Ranger Girl Scout Camp at the Togakushi Camp Center. "Our thanks to the wonderful 38 years! " GSJ, photo by Katsunori Kishida
September: Look! Look! We've devoted our time and energy to these sweet potatoes, and they've grown bigger than our faces! Troop Yamanashi 4, 17, photo by Tom Kishida
October: Cotton-picking. Rich harvest from small seeds that we planted in spring. Troop Tokyo 32, 65, 126, 131, 133, photo by Katsunori Kishida
November: Volunteering in garbage-collecting. Let's give our streets a thorough cleaning. Troop Yamagata 7, photo by Katsunori Kishiada
December: Peace Pack Project. We're handing our sincere gifts to each and every Afghan refugee children. GSJ

Girl Scout Calendar 2000
January: Cultural Exchange Program '99 to invite the UK Guiders. Friendship has been growing around the world. GSJ, photo by Tom Kishida.
February: Girl Scout Gathering. Ranger Girl Scouts from all over Japan are discussing on the theme, " Link, Build, Mobilize". GSJ, photo by Tom Kishida.
March: We got all dressed up with colored plastic sheet and newspaper, as if we were the dolls of the Girls' Festival. Troop Tokyo 5, photo by Tom Kishida.
April: We spent wonderful day with lots of fun, at the rally " to find dreams". All the faces beamed with big smiles. Council Chiba Prefecture, photo by Tom Kishida.
May: We walked along the street with eye bandage on. We realized how much we relied upon the sense of sight. Troops in Shizuoka Prefecture, photo by Katsunori Kishida.
June: At the Day Camp. " We can't wait for the dish ready!" Outdoor cooking brings a slightly different flavor to us. Troop Osaka 131, photo by Tom Kishida.
July: First try to prepare Brazilian dishes. Differences in climate and culture produce foods with diversity. Troop Toyama 9, photo by Minoru Nakajima.
August: We are all excited to make ice cream by ourselves in the farm. " Ice cream could be made this way, too!". Council Iwate Prefecture, photo by Tom Kishida.
September: First-aid. Learning how to do the mouth-to-mouth respiration. Our motto is always " Be prepared". Troop Aomori 5, photo by Tom Kishida.
October: Skipping a big rope. " How many times can we skip?" Teamwork is most important key to the match. Troops in Kanagawa Prefecture, photo by Katsunori Kishida.
November: We were shaking all over as we got closer to a big cow, but it greeted us with gentle eyes. Council Okayama Prefecture, photo by Tom Kishida.
December: Challenge to Christmas craft, " I want to put up this lovely wreath in my room at once !" Troop Chiba 1, photo by Minoru Nakajima.

Girl Scout Calendar 2001
January: Sparkling in the snow, having fun with best friends. Troop Gunma 74, photo by Tom Kishida.
February: World Thinking Day. Thinking of sisters around the world. Troops in Chiba Prefecture, photo by Tom Kishida.
March: Peace Pack. Packed with stationery and love from Girl Scouts in Japan. The 6th Mission to Pakistan by GSJ.
April: My leader is always watching my development in Scouting! Troop Gunma 52, photo by Minoru Nakajima.
May: Girl Scouts and local people are having fun together, involving local people in the town festival. Troop Saitama 47, photo by Tom Kishida.
Jun: Nationality does not matter in scouting. Sisters share a good time together. Troop Tochigi 36, photo by Tom Kishida.
July: Youth Exchange Programme of Korea and Japan. We, including local people, enjoyed their beautiful dance. GSJ, photo by Minoru Nakajima.
August: Towards the new generation! The door of Togakushi Girl Scouts Center was opened by Rangers. GSJ, photo by Katsunori Kishida.
September: Adult members from all over Japan refreshing their skills and mind. GSJ.
October: Becoming a Tenderfoot member.....polishing their sparkling sense. Council Aichi Prefecture, photo by Tom Kishida.
November: Passing on the culture, tradition and the spirit from the past to the future. Culture Exchange Programme to invite the UK Guiders. GSJ, photo by Tom Kishida.
December: Learning traditional crafts from the local people. Troop Ibaragi 34, photo by Tom Kishida.

Kimie Yokoi
leader of a troop in Tokyo Metropolis
e-mail address:

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