The Asociación de Scouts del Ecuador, the national Scouting organization of Ecuador, was founded in 1920, and became a member of the World Organization of the Scout Movement in 1922. The coeducational Asociación de Scouts del Ecuador has 3,220 members as of 2011. Cristóbal Vela introduced Scouting to boys in Quito which spread to other cities of the Highland Region, although they are less known in the Coast Region. Scouting is a respected organization in Ecuador and has been declared an "institution useful for the public welfare" by the government. Service activities are part of the Scout program. Scouts are a welcome sight during Ecuador's frequent earthquakes, as they are well organized and most helpful.