Why is Bear Grylls wearing a World Crest on his sleeve in his TV show ‘Running Wild’?

Bear Grylls collects firewood in Sardinia, Italy. (National Geographic/Jeff Ellingson)
Bear Grylls collects firewood in Sardinia, Italy. (National Geographic/Jeff Ellingson)

It has traveled deep into the jungles of Panama, through slot canyons in Arizona and down a waterfall in Italy.

It has shared screen time with celebrities like Brie Larson, Channing Tatum and Zachary Quinto.

And it’s on the Scout uniform hanging in your closet right now.

The purple World Scout Emblem, which BSA members call the World Crest, has been spotted on Bear Grylls’ right sleeve in the current season of his National Geographic show Running Wild With Bear Grylls.

An eagle-eyed fan of Running Wild emailed me recently to check whether the purple patch she spotted was, indeed, the World Scout Emblem.

“Please confirm that Bear Grylls wears a World Crest on his right sleeve on his TV show — and why,” Eileen L. wrote. “Thanks!”

That is indeed the World Crest, Eileen. As for why, we’ve got that answer, too.

Bear Grylls and Channing Tatum hiked through Norway for Grylls' National Geographic show, "Running Wild With Bear Grylls." (National Geographic/Ben Simms)
Bear Grylls and actor Channing Tatum hike through Norway for Grylls’ National Geographic show, “Running Wild With Bear Grylls.” (National Geographic/Ben Simms)

A global Scouting ambassador

The host wears the patch in a nod to his role as the first Chief Ambassador of the Scout Movement. Grylls accepted the volunteer position in November 2018, pledging to “promote Scouting worldwide, champion youth education, and inspire more adults and young people to join the Scout Movement.”

By wearing his support of Scouting on his sleeve, Grylls gives viewers a near-constant reminder of his connection to the World Organization of the Scout Movement, of which the BSA is a proud member.

The show itself pairs quite well with Scouting. Each week, Grylls takes a different celebrity along for an extreme outdoor adventure. He demonstrates survival skills, explores natural areas not seen by the average tourist and challenges his guests to step out of their comfort zones.

Scouts and Venturers do much of the same, using the outdoors as their classroom for developing skills, learning leadership and improving self-confidence.

Bear Grylls drops in to the opening ceremony at the 2019 World Scout Jamboree. (Chuck Eaton/BSA)
Bear Grylls drops in to the opening ceremony at the 2019 World Scout Jamboree. (Chuck Eaton/BSA)

Bear at the 2019 World Scout Jamboree

Last summer, Grylls made a surprise appearance at the 2019 World Scout Jamboree, held at the BSA’s Summit Bechtel Reserve in West Virginia.

With 45,000 Scouts in the audience and millions more watching around the world, Grylls shared a message of hope and challenged Scouts to be champions for good everywhere they go.

“Scouts, you have my absolute respect by playing such a key role in shaping the next generation of global citizens,” he said.

In addition to addressing the opening ceremony, Grylls toured the Summit to meet with Scouts from around the world.

He stopped at the Sustainability Treehouse for a discussion with Scouts about how they’re promoting sustainability in their home countries. This wasn’t a photo op; it was a chance to talk about practical solutions with change-makers from the U.S., U.K, Philippines, Korea, Slovenia, Ukraine, Egypt, Brazil, Ethiopia, Namibia and South Sudan.

“You are changing your communities and our society for the better from inside out,” Grylls said. “An unstoppable force for good — and we are only just getting started!”

Bear Grylls chats with actress Cara Delevingne fireside during filming of National Geographic's "Running Wild With Bear Grylls." (National Geographic/Jeff Ellingson)
Bear Grylls has a fireside chat with actress Cara Delevingne during the filming of National Geographic’s “Running Wild With Bear Grylls.” (National Geographic/Jeff Ellingson)
About Bryan Wendell 3043 Articles
Bryan Wendell, an Eagle Scout, is the founder of Bryan on Scouting and a contributing writer.