News from the Africa Scout Region

February 2003 Issue 22


  1. Growth: The theme of this year's Africa Scout Day
  2. Best Wishes for Founder's Day
  3. Ethiopia Scout Association draws a development plan
  4. Forthcoming Events

1. Growth: The theme of this year's Africa Scout Day

13th March 2003

As the Africa Scout Day nears, National Scout Association in Africa are making arrangements for the celebrations.

Although Africa Scout Day is celebrated annually on the 13th of March, most National Scouts Associations (NSAs) in Africa organise week long celebrations in the week of 13th March.

The celebrations focus on the role of Scouting in the development of young people to become responsible individuals and members of their societies in light of the fundamental principles: Duty to self and Duty to others. Activities vary from country to country but with a common goal of sensitising the community about Scouting and raising the profile of Scouting.

This year, Africa Scout Day will be celebrated in the backdrop of a resolution passed by the 36th World Scout Conference that National Scout Associations should focus on raising the Scouting's profile for the next three years until the next World Scout Conference in 2005. Scouting's profile as a strategic priority recognises that effective communication is necessary if Scouting is to attract and motivate volunteer and professional leaders, and to obtain the financial resources that it needs. The strategy further states: " Recognising Scouting's resources, communications must be carefully planned and targeted to get specific messages to clearly defined
groups of people."

At the same time, the African Region Communications plan (annexed to the 10-Year development plan for Scouting in Africa) recognises that properly planned communication initiatives are instrumental in raising the profile of Scouting through; retaining members, both scouts and volunteer leaders, attracting new members, strengthening partnerships and finding new partnerships as well as in facilitating the delivery of the Youth Programme.

Based on this, and recognising the scarcity of resources for Scout programmes, existing opportunities such as the Founders Day and the Africa Scout Day will be maximised in raising the profile of Scouting in Africa.

For this year's Africa Scout Scout Day, a theme of "Growth" has been proposed. Recognising that over 60% of Africa's population is below 25 years of age, Scouting in Africa is presented with a great opportunity and an
equally great challenge to reach out to this group, and avail to them the benefits of Scouting. These young people are most at risk of HIV/Aids, poverty, unemployment among other challenges facing Africa as a continent.

Scouting, through its unique educational method is imparting in the young people knowledge, skills and attitudes necessary to rise above these challenges. Although Scouting is attractive to young people whenever and
wherever it is offered to them, and although Scouting in Africa is the largest youth movement, not more that 1% of the target population is currently enjoying Scouting. This challenge, coupled with the goodwill scouting enjoys from the community across Africa propels the desire to grow; to reach out to more young people and hence the theme for this year's Africa Scout Day.

Through this theme, NSAs in Africa will be organising activities geared towards reaching out to more young people and interesting them to join Scouting.

The Africa Scout Day came into being following a resolution by African Heads of States summit under the umbrella of then Organisation of African Unity (now known as African Union) held in Addis Ababa in 1998. The Heads of
States voted in favour of an African Day as a recognition of the important role Scouting plays in developing the youth in Africa.

National Scout Associations in Africa have continued to use the Africa Scout Day as an opportunity to promote the profile of Scouting through organised community activities that have attracted media coverage.

We wish all our NSAs in Africa successful and happy Africa Scout Day

2. Best Wishes for Founder's Day

22nd February

As Scouts all over the world prepare to mark the Founders day on the 22nd of February, the idespatch team based at the World Scout Bureau, Africa Regional Office in Nairobi takes this opportunity to send our warm greetings from Kenya during this build up period.

Most Scout groups organise activities throughout the week that will culminate with celebrations on 22nd February, 2002. Here in Kenya, Founder's day celebrations will climax with a huge parade and rally at Baden-Powell's graveside and Memorial Park in Nyeri where thousands of Scouts and friends of Scouts will be expected to attend.

3. Ethiopia Scout Association draws a development plan

Soon after recognition by WOSM in Greece.

At the Greece world Conference, Ethiopia scouts received their certificate symbolising their return to the world scout brotherhood.

This is the crowning of 10 years of efforts by Fr. Renzo, the Chief Scout of Ethiopia, who worked tirelessly to get his association recognised again at world level.

With the support of the Africa Regional Office, Ethiopian scouts organised a number of training courses in the past and conducted recruitment drives and public relation activities. Presently they are about 2500 scouts.

This multipurpose seminar, the first to be held since their recognition by WOSM in Greece in July 2002, was meant to give them an opportunity to analyse their situation and draft a national plan for the three years to come. It was from 3rd to 7th February 2003, in Addis Ababa. It was facilitated by Abdoulaye Sene and Gathogo Ngugi, director of training and Director of community development respectively from the World Scout Bureau, Africa Regional Office.

There were 30 participants in total and all regions were represented except one where peace is not yet completely restored after the past conflict. The participants were very enthusiastic and committed. By the end of the seminar, a draft plan had been drawn and will be finalised soon by a follow up committee that was set up. A National Council meeting is scheduled for 19th March 2003, to endorse the plan.

Ethiopia has also paid up their WOSM and Regional fees.

4. Forthcoming Events

In Africa