The weekend of 5 to 7 April 2013 was designated to the European Scout Symposium when the European Region would meet, review progress on its current Regional Plan, consider the impact of World issues, contributions from other Regions and other partners organisations so that they could make initial proposals for the next Regional Scout Plan.
And so it happened that 137 individuals descended on Dublin – the Carlton Hotel at the airport, coming from 33 European Countries as well as Ethiopia and Canada, the World Scout Bureau, Regional Office and WAGGGS. It was a packed time.
After an update on the Regional Plan and a general introduction to work at world level, Friday was spent examining important global issues – including voting and fees, youth empowerment, Messengers of Peace and Human Rights. This was followed by an important information session on strategy, global support and 21st Century Leadership.
Messages from Africa – delivered in person by Wayne Davis (Africa Committee Member) and a video message from Dr Chao from the Asia-Pacific Region ensured that we were not isolationist in our thinking.
The business of the day was concluded by a contribution from the Secretary General, Scott Teare who dealt with location and services of the World Scout Bureau. An open session enabled wider contributions and questions.
The day was concluded, after dinner, with a visit to Loch Dan, the headquarters of Scouting Ireland, where the participants were able to explore the campsite, enjoy beautiful music, meet members of Scouting Ireland and sample food delights.
After work to contribute to deciding on the vision for the Regional Scout Plan, a participative method ensured that all participants could contribute to ideas to achieve the vision and contribute to the plan proposals. Inputs were given from WAGGGS, the European Youth Forum, European Volunteering Alliance and Kandersteg International Scout Centre.
The business of the day was an open space session where candidates for the elections to the European Scout Committee were able to subject themselves to “interrogation”.
The evening was concluded by contribution from the Scout Show, entertainment by very talented members of Scouting Ireland which was hugely appreciated by all the participants.
During the night, the European Committee, assisted by coordinators and staff, produced a draft plan which was presented to the meeting on Sunday morning – fewer areas of work, more focus and an emphasis on the core services of the Region. More work to be done, but there was general acceptance that the outcome met the requirements established by the participants.
There followed a series of promotions: European Scout Conference – Berlin – in August, 1st World Educational Congress in Hong Kong and some 11 other opportunities.
And finally – the thanks of everyone were expressed to the host team from Scouting Ireland who had ensured that everyone had a great time – working and playing. It was typical Irish hospitality at its best – thank you to all involved. A long list of other had contributed to the success and were publicly thanked.
And next – the Regional Committee will take the raw material and construct a more developed proposal for consultation before and during the Regional Conference.
Note: Presentations, documents, reports and other media will be featured on the 5th European Scout Symposium microsite symposium2013.europak-online.net
Videos: Recording from plenary sessions on Saturday and Sunday:
Video 1: Saturday
Video 2: Sunday part 1
Video 3: Sunday part 2