MEEKER I Editor’s note: Collin Cochran is an Eagle Scout in Venturing Crew 91 and a senior honor student at Meeker High School who recently returned from the World Scout Jamboree. He plays varsity football, wrestles and enjoys acting in drama club musicals. He plans to attend a major university and is considering a career as a physician.Thirty-six young men and women Venturers, ages 14 through 17, and four advisers from throughout the 12-state western region of the Boy Scouts of America met in San Francisco to tour the city and then departed for the 22nd World Scout Jamboree in Rinkaby, Sweden, hosted by the World Organization of the Scout Movement (WOSM,) July 27 through Aug. 7. World Jamborees are held every four years. One hundred-sixty countries were represented by more than 40,000 Scouts including 9,000 International Service Team staff and was the largest ever held. The first was held in 1920, hosted in London by Scouting founder Sir Robert S.S. Baden-Powell. The Jamboree theme was “Simply Scouting.” The Jamboree had all the essential services of a moderate-sized city. The Western Region Venturing Crew camped in the Karlstad sub-camp with Scouts from Holland, Portugal, Scotland, France and Germany. Scouts from Uganda travel by bicycle through Europe to Sweden. After arriving and setting up the campsite, Venturers and scouts from all the nations displayed their flags and marched in an impressive parade of colors into the Jamboree Arena for a spectacular opening arena show, with a welcome by their Majesties, King Karl XVI Gustav and Queen Silvia of Sweden. The King is also an avid Scouter who has visited World Jamborees for many years. The Swedish rock group ABBA welcomed the Scouts with music and renowned Scouting officials from the WOSM shared their greetings.Highlights of the Jamboree included a Day of Service, Camp in Camp (16 km. hike in the Swedish forest), Dream Quest night hike (spiritual experience exploring ideas about future lives), team-building exercises, obstacle courses, Zorbing (inside of an inflated large plastic ball in a pool), ice climbing, rock climbing and rappelling. Cultural exchanges shared international cuisine and customs with Japanese and German Scouts. The Global Development Village featured disabilities awareness, world peace, mitigating and eliminating war, poverty and hunger and Scout pioneering projects.Collin’s greatest impression of the Jamboree is as a “United Nations of World Youth” in a neutral venue where Scouts of all nations live together in friendship, share similar common interests and making friendships that will continue many years. Governments of the international community would do well to learn that lesson. Most Jamboree Scouts know two or more languages and nearly all speak English. The Venturing Crew often chose a diet of red beans and rice to satisfy their appetites after participating in all the exciting activities. They enjoyed a baseball game with Norwegian Scouts and taught others American flag football. “Swapping” Scout emblems and uniforms was popular so it was hard to tell who was from what country. Since the Venturers wore forest green uniforms, they gave each other “green” nicknames. Collin carried the flag and was known as “jolly green giant”; others were “queen green,” “Yoda,” “green bean” and “sugar snap pea.” As the jamboree drew to a close with the final arena show, Scouts joined together to sing the Jamboree song, “Changing the World.” Then Sweden presented the World Jamboree flag was presented to Japan, the host of the 2015 World Jamboree. The Scouts engaged in a last joyous farewell, waving their flags and cheering. It was an experience that will live on in their memories of a lifetime. The 2019 World Jamboree will be hosted in West Virginia hosted by the Boy Scouts of America, Scouts Canada and Scouts Mexico. Collin has been asked to serve on the “High Adventure” National Staff of the 2013 BSA National Scout Jamboree in recognition of outstanding leadership. Young men and women interested in joining Venturing should contact Collin for more information. For more information on the 22nd World Scout Jamboree and Venturing, see: http://www.worldscoutjamboree.se/http://scout.org/en/information_events/events/world_scout_events/jamboree/22nd_world_scout_jamboree/jamboree_newshttp://www.scouting.org/scoutsource/Venturing.aspx
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