Tired Whitchurch Explorer Scout arrives home!

The two intrepid Whitchurch Explorer Scouts have returned from Scandinavia after an experience that may change their outlook on life. Over 40,000 scouts from 146 countries gathered at Rinkaby in Sweden for the 22nd World Scout Jamboree, for a meeting of cultures and lifestyles on a scale rarely seen before. This was the largest Jamboree to ever be held since the beginning of scouting.

Campfires in nature

The environment…
Lawrence Fergus and Alice Buckley, who had been selected as part of the UK contingent, participated in a whole range of activities, from environmental investigations to night time exercises. A core element was the use of the natural environment as a tool for learning whilst understanding its vulnerability.

King of Sweden meets scouts

Global issues…
Nature, science, global issues and community sharing were all experienced in the unique atmosphere, along of course with the fantastic opening and closing ceremonies, the latter attended by the King and Queen of Sweden. During the event the prime ministers of Denmark, Finland and Sweden also visited the site to talk with the scouts.

A corner of the main campsite

A bomb scare!
One excitement that was not welcome was a night time bomb scare when, during an off site camping expedition, Alice’s patrol unearthed a hand grenade when digging out a waste water pit It took several hours for the Bomb Disposal team to announce the all clear! But true to form the scouts were prepared – and a sing song ensued.

A mix of cultures…
Being able to walk up to anyone from another culture, say “hi” and start talking was a norm, while swapping badges, neckers, hats and even kitbags was a popular activity and the scouts came back with many souvenirs.

Sunset over Rinkaby

Family life…
As well as the Jamboree the scouts also spent time in Copenhagen before the main event, while after they stayed with families in Germany and Romania after as part of experiencing life in those countries.

Thank you everyone…
The scouts wish to thank all those who have made this possible, friends and supporters without whom this could not have taken place. Few young people in other spheres get the chance to undertake such adventures but with scouting it is possible. But the overwhelming outcome was the friendships, many of which will last a lifetime.

Whitchurch is lucky to have an active group.

To get a good feel for the Jamboree’s friendship watch this short film:

While the fantastic closing ceremony is here – can you pick out the King and Queen of Sweden ‘dancing’?
Clue: its at 2:09


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