By Amina Nazarli
Azerbaijan, a country that has already turned into a paradise for sport fans for the number of major sporting events it hosted, will welcome the 41st World Scout Conference and the 13th World Scout Youth Forum.
The 2017 World Conference will meet in the capital city of Baku, while the World Scout Youth Forum will meet in Azerbaijan's picturesque region of Gabala in August.
The World Scout Conference is the governing body of WOSM (World Organization of the Scout Movement), and is where many important decisions are made. Here, member organizations consider the policy and standards of the Scout Movement, formulate the general policy of the World Organization and take the action required to further the purpose of the Movement.
Some of the functions of the Conference are to elect members of the World Scout Committee, admit new member countries, and select the venues for forthcoming World Scout Events, namely World Scout Jamborees, World Scout Moots, World Scout Conferences and World Scout Youth Forums. The Conference takes place every three years.
The World Scout Youth Forum takes place in conjunction with the World Scout Conference. The Youth Forum will take place before the conference and provides an opportunity for youth members of World Scouting to discuss different issues that face their NSOs from a youth perspective.
The World Scout Youth Forum is considered as an interim measure to improve youth involvement in decision-making at world level and at the end of the Forum suggestions may be put forward to the Conference for consideration.
Azerbaijan is already recognized as a sports nation and will host a number of prestigious competitions this year.
2017 will bring joy to many sports fans in Azerbaijan, as the country will welcome the fourth Islamic Solidarity Games scheduled for May 12-22, while in June it will host the second Formula 1 race. The traditional Vugar Hashimov Memorial in Shamkir is scheduled for late Apri. In September, Azerbaijan together with neighboring Georgia will hold the European championship in volleyball for women, in which 16 countries will be represented. Besides, the Azerbaijan Gymnastics Federation has planned a series of important events in 2017.