South Australia have kicked off the next stage in their partnership with the Fiji Scout Association.
By investing the first Fijian Rover Scout after assisting the Fiji Scout Training Team deliver a training course in the country, South Australian Rovers Dylan Hunt, Gemma Wood, and Jack Caddy, along with Branch Commissioner – International, Greg Warnes, have started a new Scouting tradition.
This year, Fiji Scout Association will celebrate its centenary, but 100 years after Scouting came to the country, there is still plenty of opportunity to offer young people in the country more.
Scouting in Fiji is part of the school system. Scout leaders are school teachers, and once young people leave school, their Scouting journey often ends. By training young people in the basics of Rovering, Scouting in Fiji has become a school and community based organisation, able to reach more Fijians and bring them the skills for life that Scouting offers.
South Australia discovered that offering training to leaders and Rovers, in conjunction with the Fiji Scout Training Team, was the best way of helping the Fiji Scout Association to achieve its goals after an extensive consultation process. This process started after a reconnaissance mission by South Australian leaders in 2013, and included working with Libby Davison, an Australian Scout and Australian Youth Ambassador for Development working in Fiji.
For South Australian Rover Dylan Hunt, the partnership with Fiji means a two-way exchange. Discussing the Australian Contingent to the Fiji Centenary Jamboree in August, Dylan said, “Australian Scouts will be in Troops with Fijian Scouts. It’s a unique cultural experience, and the Scouts will show each other how they camp, cook, and Scout in their home countries.”
After watching the newly invested Fijian Rover go on to invest the next 6 Rovers, each from a different district of Fiji, Dylan was able to reflect on what the two way exchange meant for him, “we’ve been reminded why we’re Scouts. Why it’s important to give our time and exchange knowledge with our cultures and new friends.”
“Fiji reminds us of the Scouting fundamentals. No matter where we are in the world, there are people that live by the same ideals and values, and that want the best not only for their own communities, but for the rest of the world.”