It’s our being diverse that makes us all one

Written by Tebogo Rakgabyane

As a Scouter I have seen many young people grow into adults that are not only building their own successful futures, but who are also giving back to their communities in ways only Scouts can. One such young man is Collen Fhulufhelo Ramuthiveli. This is his story;

“My name is Collen Fhulufhelo Ramuthiveli and I am a member of SCOUTS South Africa. I started my Scouting journey in 1999, in Kagiso, Krugersdorp and I have never looked back! I remember being lured into Scouting through my love for adventure and pioneering”, he quips.

“I started at the Mafaesa Scout Group in Kagiso, after which I joined 1st Kagiso Scout Group, and then moved on to join the Unified Scout Group in Dunnottar in Gauteng (now operating from its new meeting grounds in Kwa-Thema), under the leadership and mentorship of Tebogo Rakgabyane.  Ever since I joined the Scout Movement, I have always done my best to show that Scouting is more than just a movement for young people, it is a lifestyle for those who join and stay on.

During my time as a Scout I had the opportunity to attend and participate in the 21st World Scout Jamboree which was held in the United Kingdom in 2007. In 2010, I then also represented SCOUTS South Africa at the “4th International Scouting Gathering for Scouting and Intellectual Initiatives” in Sharjah, United Araba Emirates. I was 19 years old at the time. I would like to think that I conquered and changed the thinking of many in Dubai with a programme I presented on Dialoue for Young People on HIV and AIDS. I returned home with a Trophy and Award as I placed 4th in the category for Micro Projects, presented by representatives from 78 Countries, and with 123 participants in attendance. In May of the same year, I joined the International Camp Staff Programme in the USA, in which I served as staff at Phillmont Camp for 3 months.

I am so happy with my accomplishments, and I am more than delighted that I got a chance to represent SCOUTS South Africa, and the country at large through the many international programmes presented to me at the time, and I know I will still do more. Being a Scout has shown me that there are no issues of being different from one another, despite us speaking different languages and coming from different cultural backgrounds as a people. It’s our being diverse that makes us all one.

Recently, I received my 15 Year Long Service Medal as an Adult Leader in SCOUTS South Africa, and I am looking forward to more years of service to the Scout Movement. As an adult volunteer I have been able to complete numerous training courses, like the Permit Phase, Introduction to Adult Leadership, the Scout Warrant Course, the Scout Woodbadge Course, the Water Awareness Course, and I also served as staff on the 52nd Patrol Leader Training Unit (PLTU) in 2011. I have grown as a person through Scouting and in addition to my family’s support as I walked through Scouting, I would also like to thank the following people:  Gauteng RC Angus Hay, my then mentor and friend Brian February, and the Scout Groups that invested their time and effort to helping me become the person I am today.

The impact of Scouting as a leading youth organisation in the world has been recognised by the United Nations with whom World Scouting has a partnership.  With the aim of creating a better world, this partnership has enabled  SCOUTS South Africa to take on the challenge to support the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals.

I have had time to reflect on how far I have come in Scouting, and how much Scouting and Rovering has played a role in not just my Scouting career, but my life in general. And now it’s time for me to give back to the Movement and the community, and use all the knowledge and skills I have acquired over the years, to help develop and empower other young people.

I recently moved back to settle in Ha-Maelula, Nzhelele, Limpopo. I am keen to start a Scout Group where young people between the ages of 11-26 can be absorbed into the Scout Programme. The aim is to introduce one unit at first and build up into a Scout Group with all units. I would start with a Scout Troop for young people between the ages of 11-17 years, and will later on incorporate a Rover Crew for young adults between 18-26, so the Scouts would be able to continue their journey as Rovers.”

Collen has been appealing to parents and community leaders in the Nzhelele community to come together and build a Scout Group where their children can get the opportunity to change their lives for the better, and where adults can gain skills to help them in their work environment as well as make lifelong friends themselves.

For more information you can contact Collen or to join the Scout Movement near you contact us