The purpose of the Boy Scouts of America, incorporated on February 8, 1910, and chartered by Congress in 1916, is to provide an educational program for boys and girls to build character, to train in the responsibilities of participating citizenship, and to develop personal fitness.
Community-based organizations receive national charters to use the Scouting program as a part of their own youth work. These groups, which have goals compatible with those of the BSA, include religious, educational, civic, fraternal, business, and labor organizations; governmental bodies; corporations; professional associations; and citizens' groups.
Volunteer adult leaders serve at all levels of Scouting in approximately 265 local councils, 30 areas, and 4 regions, and nationally with volunteer executive boards and committees providing guidance. Each autonomous local council is chartered by the BSA, which provides program and training aids along the guidelines established by the national Executive Board and the national charter from Congress.