<iDespatch>

News from the Africa Scout Region


October 2005 Issue 49

IN THIS ISSUE

  1. JOINT ACTIVITIES TO MARK WORLD AIDS DAY BY SCOUT ASSOCIATIONS IN SOUTHERN
    AFRICA
  2. JACOBS FOUNDATION SCIENTIFIC DIRECTOR TOURS PROJECT IN AFRICA
  3. MUSEVENI IS HONOURED AS PATRON OF WORLD SCOUTING
  4. KENYA SCOUTS BEGIN PREPARATIONS FOR THEIR CENTENARY CELEBRATIONS
  5. UNEP CHILDREN PAINTING COMPETITION IS SET FOR JANUARY 2006
  6. INVITATION TO ATTEND SCOUT GATHERING IN SAUDI ARABIA

1. JOINT ACTIVITIES TO MARK WORLD AIDS DAY BY SCOUT ASSOCIATIONS IN SOUTHERN AFRICA

National Scout Associations of the Southern Africa have agreed to hold
coordinated activities to mark the World Aids Day this year. In a joint
press release, the associations say the scouts in all the participating
countries will carry out activities on the World Aids Day, to signify the
role the scouts are playing in the fight against HIV/AIDs in Southern
Africa. The Chairman of the Southern zone of the Africa Scout Region,
Chris Mbanga notes; “We agreed in our last Zonal Conference held in
Lesotho in April this year to participate in a number of activities in
cities, towns and villages across the Zone to show our concern about the
havoc being wreaked on families, friends and communities by the dreaded
disease, and to express our collective commitment to tackle the problem at
the grassroots level.”

To symbolise their resolve and solidarity in the HIV/Aids awareness
campaign, all scouts in southern Africa will wear their scout uniforms on
World Aids day. They will also spot a special HIV/AIDs awareness badge on
their uniforms, which has been produced and distributed for free to all
the associations in the zone by South Africa Scout Association. All scouts
will participate in various community activities such as public talks,
visiting those affected by the disease, prayer meetings among others. Each
scout group will identify relevant activities to organise on that day.
This is the first time that scout associations in Africa will hold joint
and coordinated activities to mark the World Aids Day. Members of the
Southern zone are also discussing to see if this idea can be developed
further, in the coming years, as their zonal Gift of Peace between now and
the Scout Centenary celebrations in 2007. The Southern Zone of the Africa
Scout region is made up of the national Scout Associations of Angola,
Botswana, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa, Swaziland,
Zambia and Zimbabwe. The zone has been meeting every year for an annual
zonal conference for the last 32 years.

The World Organisation of the Scout Movement has been a key player in
fight against HIV/AIDs. As part of the largest youth movements in the
world, WOSM was part of a joint statement on HIV/AIDs, signed by the CEOs
of the Alliance of Youth Organisations in January 2005. The statement
reads in part; “The Alliance of Youth CEOs perceives the HIV/AIDS pandemic
as a crucial issue affecting young people and therefore is one of our top
priorities in each of our organizations. AIDS is more than a public health
problem; it is a crisis in education, economics, social and security
systems. Young people are at the heart of the pandemic with an estimated
8.5 million young people aged 15-25 living with AIDS in Africa. To stem
the further rise in infection rates, prevention strategies that are
strategically focused on youth, combined with interventions aimed at the
communities in which they live, offer an effective way of mitigating the
impact of the disease.”

The full statement can be viewed at:
www.scout.org/wsrc/ll/ll5en.shtml#education


2. JACOBS FOUNDATION SCIENTIFIC DIRECTOR TOURS PROJECT IN AFRICA

Professor Dieter Wolke, Scientific Director at the Jacobs Foundation
toured the Niger Scout Association to assess the progress with the
Leadership development Project. The project is being implemented by six
national Scout associations in Africa, funded by the Jacobs Foundation and
coordinated by the World Scout Bureau, Africa Regional Office. The
project, which was launched in September 2004, is in its first year of
implementation. The main aim of the project is to equip the young people
with leadership skills and to prepare them for responsibility in their
communities.

Prof. Wolke then visited and held talks with concerned executives at the
Africa Regional office. The talks centred on the experiences, gains, and
challenges in the first phase of this project.

These experiences will be factored in the planning for the next phase of
the project, next year, which will take the project to Rwanda, Seychelles
and Angola. Prof Wolke expressed satisfaction with the role the regional
office is playing in coordinating and reporting on the project. Some of
the challenges, occasioned by factors such as language barriers, famine
and political turbulence in some countries that has slowed the project
implementation were discussed. The Leadership project is being implemented
in Mauritius, South Africa, Burundi, Ethiopia, Niger and the Gambia. It is
the single largest funded project for the Scout Movement in Africa.


3. MUSEVENI IS HONOURED AS PATRON OF WORLD SCOUTING

The World Organisation of the Scout Movement has honoured President Yoweri
Museveni of Uganda as an honorary Patron of World Scouting. During the
country’s independence celebrations attended by two other heads of states
from neighbouring Kenya and Burundi, The Africa Scout Regional Director,
Kinuthia Murugu, on behalf of the WOSM Secretary General, presented the
President with the prestigious certificate of recognition.

President Museveni is the Patron of Uganda Scout Association and has
shown, over the years, a personal interest in the future of young people
in his country. He has extended enormous support to the scout association
such as seconding teachers to work for the association, grants for the
scouts to take part in international gatherings, and to organise national
events.

The president often presides over numerous youth events in Uganda, and
calls on the young people to be patriotic and active in the national
development process. The President has initiated a Presidential Initiative
on HIV/AIDS strategy for Communicating with young people. He has also
stated that Uganda will strive to attain the Millennium Development Goals
to ensure a safe future for its youth.

In recognition of his support for the youth and the Scout Movement in
Uganda, President Museveni expressed his gratitude and pledged his
continued support.

The ceremony, which was well attended, gave a big boost to the profile of
Scouting in Uganda. It was broadcast live on national radio and TV.


4. KENYA SCOUTS BEGIN PREPARATIONS FOR THE CENTENARY CELEBRATIONS

The Kenya Scout Association has begun their preparations for the centenary
celebrations. According to the National Executive Commissioner, Miriti
Mangu, “Kenya Scout Association has a unique position in World Scouting,
as it is the last home of the Founder, Baden Powell who spent his last
years in Nyeri, Kenya, and was also buried at the same place.” Paxtu, the
cottage where BP lived, as well as his tombstone, which are at the foot of
the beautiful snow capped Mt. Kenya, have been a major attraction to
thousands of Scouts from all over the world over the years. Miriti says
that they expect more scouts to visit these sites as part of the centenary
celebrations.

Several activities will therefore be organised in Nyeri to mark the
celebrations. At the same time, Kenya Scout Association has identified
four activities that will form their gift of peace project. These include
a large tree planting campaign that targets to plant ten million trees
between now and 2007 and will cover the whole country. Secondly, scouts
will scale up their HIV/AIDs awareness campaign through an ongoing
“Scouting for solutions” project, which the scouts are implementing with
funding from PATH. The third gift of peace will target more street
children with the aim of rehabilitating them and giving them hope through
education, and vocational training. Finally, the association has planned
to scale up their drug demand reduction campaign among the youth.
The association has mobilised many volunteers to serve in various
committees addressing different aspects of the centenary preparations. The
aim is to involve every scout in the country through the various gifts of
peace projects.


5. UNEP CHILDREN PAINTING COMPETITION IS SET FOR JANUARY 2006

Unep has launched the 15th International Children's Painting Competition.
The theme of the Competition is; Deserts and Desertification. The deadline
for submitting entries is 20th January 2006. Entries should be sent to the
relevant UNEP Regional Office.

For more details please visit Unep website at:
www.unep.org/Tunza/paintcomp15

National Scout Associations are urged to promote this talent search to
their members. UNEP and WOSM entered into a Memorandum of Understanding in
2004, to work together in environmental conservation. A copy of the
Memorandum can be viewed at:
www.scout.org/front/0407africa_e.shtml#unep

This competition will help the scouts to improve their knowledge on how to
prevent desertification.


6. INVITATION TO ATTEND SCOUT GATHERING IN SAUDI ARABIA

The International Union of Muslim Scout in close cooperation with Arab
Scout Region and Saudi ArabiaScout Association, have announced the 2006
International Scouts gathering on Civilization Recognition and Culture
Exchange. It will take place in Jobail east Province of Saudi Arabia,
between 3rd and 11th February 2006. The theme of the event is; Together
for Peace. According to Fawzi Farghali, the Regional Director for the Arab
Scout Region, no fee is required to participate in this event. The Saudi
Boy Scout Association, Al Jopa Group, will provide full hospitality. To
find out about eligibility and application to participate in this event,
contact:

Mr. Hussain Sahal, Deputy General Secretary- IUMS
Postal Address: Saudi Arabia - P.O Box 91413
Phone: Office Tel and fax 00966-2-66737762
Mobile: 00966-504662674


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