Scouts from Cheshire have joined more than 30,000 others from all over the world at the 23rd World Scout Jamboree in Japan.
The once-in-a lifetime opportunity for fun, challenge and adventure has been made possible for 50 scouts including some from Chester, Ellesmere Port and Neston.
After years of planning, preparation and anticipation, Scouts from more than 200 countries and territories are camping together in a tented-city near Kirara-hama, Japan, following a spectacular opening ceremony to start the global event.
A rainbow of flags from the UK to Brazil, USA to Pakistan, and Indonesia to Kenya was being waved proudly in peace and harmony.
Cathan Rummey, 16, Chester, said: “The opening ceremony was amazing. Seeing all the flags united together made me feel that Scouting could change the world. It’s not every day you can walk from tent to tent and enter a different country to learn about their lives.”
Throughout the event, which involves almost as many young people as the Olympic Games, the thousands of Scouts will have the opportunity to take part in hundreds of activities focused on discovering new cultures, the environment, sustainable development and global issues.
Hannah Kentish speaks from the event:
Each had to raise £3,000 to go, with part of this fee supporting Scouts attending from developing countries across Eurasia. They have been supported throughout their preparations by a dedicated team of adult volunteers.
Cheshire Unit Leader Dave Hopley, said: “The Jamboree is a brilliant experience for the Scouts, but it’s huge fun for us adults too. I’ve loved watching them grow in confidence and self-esteem. The looks on their faces when they saw the site for the first time was overwhelming. It’s remarkable to see how their hard work has paid off.”
Chief Scout Bear Grylls, added: “While lots of people know that Scouting is all about adventure, they often don’t realise that adult volunteers get to do just as much as our young members through their involvement. The World Scout Jamboree is a great example of this. Nearly 4,000 Scouts from across the UK are meeting 26,000 others from around the world and taking part in some amazing adventures. That is why I love Scouting so much!”
As well as being a fantastic opportunity for young people, the Jamboree is a chance for adult volunteers to take part in activities, and learn new skills that they can use in other aspects of their lives.
To find out more about Scouting, visit www.scouts.org.uk or call 0845 300 1818.