The Bromsgrove Institute Trust were very happy to award a grant to scouts from the Bromsgrove area to aid them in their expedition to the World Scout Jamboree in America.
The Trustees were also delighted when a small group of them attended a meeting of the Trust to give first hand feed back of their trip and the benefits gained, due to their experiences, from going to the World Scout Jamboree.
Please read their brief account:
World Scout Jamboree
Eleven Scouts from the Bromsgrove Area joined 45,000 other Scouts from 150 countries at the World Scout Jamboree in West Virginia, USA at the end of July. The Scouts were part of the Hereford and Worcester Unit and their epic three week adventure took them firstly for a day sight-seeing in New York where they took in the views of the Rockefeller Centre and the solemnity of Ground Zero before travelling to the Jamboree campsite at the Summit Bechtel Reserve in West Virginia, the headquarters of the Boy Scouts of America.
Chief Ambassador of World Scouting Bear Grylls was there to greet the Scouts at the opening ceremony, abseiling onto the stage where he urged Scouts to make a positive impact on the environment and the world at large.
The Scouts sat in awe, side by side as a single international community as the evening finished with a stunning light show from hundreds of drones filling the night sky.
The Summit Bechtel campsite is five miles across, significantly bigger than Bromsgrove, and the Scouts clocked up many steps to explore the activities it offers including zip wires, mountain biking, white water rafting and skateboarding, as well as environmental, cultural and international development projects.
Unit member Vicky Johnson had a great time “The activities were amazing” she enthused. “I especially enjoyed the skateboarding. It was great to see how people from all around the world could get along and get involved in everything together.”
Some of the most memorable moments came with the interaction with Scouts from other countries. By the end of the stay, many Scouts nationalities were becoming increasingly indistinguishable as they swapped badges, uniform, and equipment with each other.
Bromsgrove Explorer Scout Tom Matthews is already planning ahead – “One of the best things that happened to me was meeting up with a Scout from New Jersey. We spent the majority of a day together and met up multiple times on the camp. We are hoping to meet up again on the next Jamboree.”
The closing ceremony featured former Secretary General of the United Nations, Ban Ki-Moon, whose country South Korea will host the next Jamboree in 2023. He urged the Scouts to be global citizens, tolerant of other people and cultures, to protect our planet and help each other.
As the Jamboree concluded, the journey for the UK Scouts continued as they travelled to Washington DC for more sightseeing and a baseball match featuring the Baltimore Orioles. The support they gave Orioles fielder Anthony Santander even got them on national TV.
They were then on to Canada to be hosted by local Scout Groups. The Hereford and Worcester Scouts were based in the middle of Toronto with the 101st Toronto, Old Mill Troop and finished their adventure with a trip to Niagara Falls and a bar-b-q with their hosts.
The Jamboree marks the end of a two-year period that the Hereford and Worcester Unit have been together during which time they had many training camps learning the skills they needed for the Jamboree experience and for their future lives. They have all grown very close and are now looking forward to a reunion ball planned for October.