Celebrating 100 years of Scouting

What is this?” asked a boy Scout from Russia. I replied, “This is Nepali noodle. Would you like to taste some?”

I offered him some and watched while he ate it. I was happy when he gave me a thumbs-up sign. I could see he found it spicy yet tasty as many other Scouts who had tasted it.

This was the food festival — one of the many exciting events at the 21st World Scout Jamboree held in Hylands Park, London from July 28-August 8. Over 40,000 scouts from all over the world had participated to mark 100 years of scouting started by Lord Baden Powell in 1907.

Eighty-four Nepal Scouts participated in the Jamboree.

After reaching London, we spent the next 12 days doing things that were both exciting and useful. The opening ceremony was a great success and it was made more memorable by the presence of Prince William. We attended the Sunrise Ceremony on August 1, which was the day of 100 years of scouting started by Lord Baden Powell with 20 boy scouts in Brown Sea Island, where two of the Nepali Scouts had gone for three days and two nights.

Then there was the food festival where Scouts from different countries made delicacies of their respective countries. In the days to come we indulged ourselves in numerous activities like challenge valley, water activities, different kinds of games, art, trash music, trash games, trash art, cooking, digging the earth, cutting trees, we put on dresses of different nations, we did many experiments related to water, air, fire et cetera.

We also got the opportunity to put up our views about climate change, AIDS, child labour, present condition of women in the world, among others. These activities were not only challenging and adventurous but they were also essential and inspiring. Some of us attended the carnival of different sub-camps and took a round of almost the whole of the Jamboree site.

Time flew and soon it was time for the closing ceremony. Though it was raining, we enjoyed the performances. Then all the Scouts present renewed the Scout promise. The ceremony ended with magnificent fireworks and some songs.

We left for Wembley Plaza Hotel. We visited Madame Tussauds Wax Museum, Buckingham Palace, the Tower of London where we got to see the Crown Jewels and we took a flight in the London Eye before returning to Nepal.

The Jamboree gave us not only the opportunity to enjoy ourselves, but we got a chance to learn a lot about life and to face challenges with courage and determination. I have realised that there is and will always be a bond between people all over the world. It was a pleasure to know that what Lord Baden Powell had started with only 20 boy Scouts has now become a world-wide organisation with about 28 million members from 158 countries.

If we follow what Lord Baden Powell believed in, that is we are happy when we make others happy, we will be able to make a difference in the world. “One World One Promise’ was the theme of this Jamboree. Let us all unite and promise that we will work hand in hand to make this world a better palace to live in and let’s start making a difference starting with our family, society and our nation.