One year on from Clyde Region’s Queen’s Scout Expedition to Indonesia, 30 Explorer Scouts and Scout Network members reflect on their adventure and experience meeting the world’s largest Scouting organisation.
In July 2015, the team travelled to the Indonesian island Java spending 18 days acclimatising to new surroundings and taking on challenges.
Planning for the expedition took two years. Once selected, the expedition team began training and fundraising. Some embarked on a group challenge to collectively climb the height of Mount Everest.
Organisational skills were put to the test during planning alongside a group of in-country experts – vital in the preparation process.
On arrival the team was welcomed by the world’s largest Scouting organisation and introduced to their new culture. Scouting plays a key part of the national curriculum in Indonesia. The group shared traditional Scottish music before hitting the road to start their community and conservation projects.
The team quickly discovered the language barrier was solved through perseverance and positivity and the local monkey population liked clothing as much as spare food.
Team building was put to the test at the turtle sanctuary on Sukamade beach and again doing a jungle and volcano trek. Working together to support and motivate each other was as important as being physically fit.
The trip was a huge success, one member is even returning to take part in a sustainable development course and a number of Network Scouts are leading upcoming summer European expeditions. Preparation has also begun for the next Queen’s Scout expedition to Sumatra in 2018.
Fraser Mcgarrigle, Regional Vice Chair and Scout Network member from the Great Western District shares his advice on how to get the most out of the experience, 'getting to know one and other in advance, engaging in the planning process, cultural research and making sure you are physically fit as well as approaching the experience with an open mind is the key to success, he continued, 'we would not have been able to do this without the support of our in-country experts who worked round the clock to make sure we had an incredible and unforgettable experience.'Author: Gary Bainbridge