A group of 10 local youth will soon be heading on an adventure of a lifetime.
The ensemble from 4th Midland Scouting are part of a 40,000-person contingent of youth and scouters heading to Denmark July 21 for their national jamboree.
“Our youth were originally going to attend the Essex Jamboree in the U.K. in 2020, but then COVID came along and squashed their plans,” explains Katherine Faulkner, who serves as group commissioner/troop scouter (4th Midland Scouting) and Canadian contingent lead for Denmark 2022.
“Without really being aware of how COVID would change our lives they set their sights on Norway 2021. Well, we all know how that ended.”
So they opted to attend Spejdernes Lejr 2022, which is taking place just outside of Copenhagen at Hedeland Nature Park.
“We are proud of their choice as they could have gone to a jamboree that was catered and they said ‘absolutely not, we are going for the culture,’” Faulkner says.
There are actually five groups from across Canada attending, which will bring the Canadian contingent up to 74 jamboree participants. The 4th Midland group consists of three scouts, six venturers, one rover and three scouters.
“Scouting in Denmark is a little different from here as they practise more pioneering skills than we usually do,” Faulkner says, noting the troop spent this past weekend at Camp Wildman in Tiny Township to sharpen those skills.
“Our youth are refreshing their saw, axe, knife, fire starting, stoves and lanterns skills. They also be erected a kitchen using spars and rope as that is one of the first tasks they will be expected to do upon arrival.”
They also took a first-aid course and cooked a few meals over a fire, including some of the recipes provided ahead of time by the jamboree.
Once there, they’ll be linked with a Danish Scout group.
“Ours is called the Blue Foxes and they are from Aalborg,” Faulkner adds. “This group has been absolutely amazing with their support, answering our questions and bringing tents and cooking equipment so we don't have to bring it from Canada as that would be quite costly.”
But their adventure in Denmark doesn’t end once the jamboree is finished.
They will be travelling to Billund for two nights to visit Lego House and to take some time to recharge their batteries. Then, the troop is off to London for 4 nights where they’ll be checking out many of the local tourist sites while also making a special trip to the Harry Potter Studios.
“Their final destination will be Kirkcaldy, Scotland for three nights before flying home,” Faulkner says. “In 2019, 14th Fife Scouts from Kirkcaldy stayed at St. Paul's United Church here in Midland for three nights.
“We took them around to some of our local attractions and had a great barbecue at Little Lake Park. They were an absolutely great group and we have stayed in touch even since. They too will be at the jamboree in Denmark.
“I personally have attended several Canadian jamborees, but never an International one, so I am quite pumped!”