Two young Whitchurch Explorer Scouts have set off on the first part of their journey to the World Scout Jamboree in Sweden, the 22nd to be held. Lawrence Fergus and Alice Buckley were chosen to be part of the Hampshire Contingent following a selection process last year. After meeting up with their units in Bentley, at the one-time home of scouting founder Lord Baden Powell, they set off on their great adventure.

Once in a lifetime opportunity…
The two scouts have been undertaking a number of intensive training weekends over the last 12 months in preparation for what truly is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity. The World Jamborees are held every four years, and participants can only ever attend once, when they are between 14 and 17 years old. To be selected is always a fantastic honour.

Copenhagen, then Sweden…
Last night (Sunday) the scouts flew out to Copenhagen, arriving at midnight. Here, in the capital of Denmark and European city of bicycles, they will enjoy a few days experiencing the city’s environmentally-friendly culture.
The train journey to the eco-friendly Jamboree site in Sweden at Rinkaby follows, where they will meet with 38,000 scouts from nearly every country and culture in the world.

Learning, sharing, meeting…
The participants will meet and make new friends from across the globe, get to know each other’s cultures and participate in the camp’s many activities – environmental experiences, a cultural festival, outdoor activities, recreation, and much more; learning and sharing experienced all the time.

Staying with families…
Following the Jamboree the scouts will then travel to one of 18 European countries where they will stay with a local family in their home as part of a HoHo (Home Hospitality) scheme, to further expand their lifetime experience, before they return to Whitchurch, tired, full of stories, and able to add benefit to their own local communities.

Fund raising…
The scouts are still fund raising to cover the costs and any support would still be most welcome.
One very pleasant aspect is that the costs raised help subsidise the attendance from much less well-off areas of the world, so that all can participate in this tremendous opportunity for world friendship.

Here is what it is all about – the official video:

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…and to Denmark too
While the Whitchurch Explorer Scouts are off to the World Jamboree, the Whitchurch Scout Group are also holding a shorter trip to Denmark which will incorporate a visit to the Jamboree in Sweden. This is also a fantastic opportunity for the young people of the town who will benefit enormously from the experience.

Should anyone have any comments on this article or wish to support the scouts in any way (either the World Jamboree or the trip to Denmark) please email contact@whitchurch.org.uk

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