SCOUTS South Africa has approximately 190 000 young people engaging in Scouting on a weekly basis. In KwaZulu-Natal, thousands of girls and boys take part in extracurricular Scout activities at their schools. We spoke to four friends from the 1st Mpangeni Scout Troop about how Scouting has changed them.
“Before I joined Scouting I was really stubborn and not at all confident”, says 15 year old Snenhlahla Dube . “In Scouting I was taught about respect and I do that now. We were also introduced to speaking loudly and I learnt how to give my point of view. I want to be a doctor when I grow up and this will help me.”
Minenhle is 11 and agrees with her friend. “Before I was a Scout I would get very angry if someone bullied me or spoke badly to me. But if it happens now, and if somebody pushes me, I just tell them not to do it. I have also learnt how to survive in the outdoors if I get lost. I can make a camp and a fire” says the young Scout who dreams of being an astronaut one day. “Through Scouting I have realised that without education we will be nothing. We must learn hard”, she concludes.
“I learnt that as a Scout, I need to be a brother and sister to all Scouts. I also know many skills such as cooking without using pots and how to build a bed only using ropes and wood, no nails”, says fellow 11 year old Scout Nothando Hlekwayo with a proud smile.
“I was naughty as I was growing up. But since I became a Scout I have learnt to be loyal, honest and respectful,” adds 17 year old Thaiente Nellovu. “I like to observe things and I love nature. Being a Scout gives me the potential to do that and so much more. Scouting makes me happy happy!”
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