Japanese journey of a lifetime for 178 SA Scouts and volunteers!

142 South African Scouts and 36 Adult Leaders will be attending the Most Diverse Event for Young People in the world taking place in Japan from the 28th of July to the 8th of August 2015. The 23rd World Scout Jamboree (23WSJ) brings over 32 000 youths from 144 countries together to embrace a spirit of unity!

For 12 days, Scouts aged between 14 and 17 years old will have the amazing opportunity to live in a multicultural tented city in Kirara–hama, Yamaguchi in Japan. There they will be able to find out more about each other’s cultures, faiths and beliefs. They will get the chance to share their own South African culture with others and take part in adventurous activities, whilst learning about global challenges and how we as Scouts can make a difference in the world and be true Messengers of Peace.

It is the 23rd time that a World Scout Jamboree is being held and can be considered the most diverse event for young people in the world! The first one was held in 1920 in London. The WSJ takes place every four years in a difference country. Many Scouts consider attending a jamboree as the highlight of their Scouting journey.

The theme of the 23WSJ is WA: a spirit of unity. The Jamboree programme will cover topics such as global development, peace, culture, science, nature and water. The South African Scouts will also be actively contributing to the local community in the area around the Jamboree. One of the key highlights will be the peace programme, as 2015 marks the 70th anniversary of the atomic bombing of cities in Japan in 1945. A special Peace Memorial Ceremony will be held in Hiroshima and a Youth Peace Forum in Nagasaki, where South Africa will be represented by two Scouts from the Jamboree Contingent.

Besides the Scouts, the Jamboree also provides a great experience for some 7 700 adult volunteers who accompany the youth from their respective countries. They too get to meet people from all over the world and together form the International Service Team who serve in all 14 departments that have been set up to ensure the success of the Jamboree. These departments include among others human resources, services, ceremonies, programmes, safety, transport, etc.

As this is a journey of a lifetime, the Scouts from South Africa will be leaving a week earlier in order to travel through Japan and take in the sites of Tokyo, Mount Fuji and Kyoto. Many of the participating Scouts raised the funds to attend the Jamboree by organising fundraising events and through benefactors that wanted to give a Scout the adventure of a lifetime.

If you would like to talk to the South African Jamboree Contingent team and some of the youth we can set up an interview with you or you could meet them at a Shakedown camp taking place next week in Gilwell, Florida (west of Johannesburg). Scouts from the Western Cape, KwaZulu Natal and other regions will be departing on Monday to Johannesburg and can be met at the respective airports if preferred.

For more information and interviews contact: SCOUTS South Africa PR Manager Natasha Kayle on 073 127 93 56 or natasha.kayle@scouts.org.za.