Pioneer Camp

The following article is from The Great Soviet Encyclopedia (1979). It might be outdated or ideologically biased.

Pioneer Camp


an educational and health-care institution for Pioneers and schoolchildren aged seven to 15, operated during summer and winter vacations by trade union councils and committees in cooperation with Komsomol committees, economic organizations, and kolkhoz boards, as well as by public-education and public-health associations and committees on physical education and sports.

Most Pioneer camps are located in rural areas. Sanatorium camps, some operating year-round, have been established for children in poor health and for those with chronic diseases, speech defects, or other disabilities. Pioneers and schoolchildren remaining in the city during the summer attend urban Pioneer day camps. Such camps are patronized by enterprises, institutions, and other organizations. Kolkhoz and interkolkhoz Pioneer camps are also being developed. Secondary-school and vocational-school pupils and students attend camps specializing in health care, sports, military sports, camping and hiking, and such fields as technology, nature study, and geology. They also attend camps for labor and rest, generally attached to rural schools, kolkhozes, and sovkhozes.

Pioneer camps and camps for older schoolchildren are supported by social insurance, trade unions, economic organizations, and the centralized Union fund of kolkhoz social insurance and by contributions from parents; on the scale established by the All-Union Central Council of Trade Unions, the last amounts to approximately one-third of the cost of the stay in the camp. Pioneer camps also have Pioneer brigades and amateur groups.

As of 1973, there were approximately 40,000 Pioneer camps in the USSR, attended by some 9.3 million children. They included 10,600 rural camps, with 6.1 million children; 17,000 work-and-rest camps and camps specializing in sports, camping, hiking, and other fields, with 1.6 million children; 8,300 urban camps, with more than 1 million children; and 3,300 kolkhoz camps, with about 500,000 children.

In accordance with the decree of the Central Committee of the CPSU On Measures for Further Improvement of Rest and Recreation for Pioneers and Schoolchildren (1974), the All-Union Central Council of Trade Unions, the Central Committee of the All-Union Komsomol, ministries and departments of the USSR, the Council of Ministers of the Union and autonomous republics, and the executive committees of the krai and oblast Councils of People’s Deputies are all carrying out measures for further improving health and recreational work among schoolchildren. They are also seeking to utilize summer vacations for work and ideological and political training and to develop comprehensive physical education, sports training, hiking and camping, and health care for children and adolescents.

The largest year-round children’s health camps in the USSR are Artek, the All-Union Pioneer camp of the Central Committee of the All-Union Komsomol, and the following republic-level camps: Orlenok (Little Eagle, RSFSR), Molodaia Gvardiia (Young Guard, Ukrainian SSR), and Zubrenok (Little Bison, Byelorussian SSR).

Pioneer camps and camps for older schoolchildren have also been developed in other socialist countries.


The Great Soviet Encyclopedia, 3rd Edition (1970-1979). © 2010 The Gale Group, Inc. All rights reserved.
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