On Friday 13 March 2009, under the banner, “Our Africa, Our Environment: Scouts Care”, the Scout fraternity commemorated Africa Scout Day with pomp. In Nairobi, where the regional office (ARO) is headquartered, that occasion was marked with an environmental walk, donation of Scout uniform and the planting of 100 trees. ARO staffs were involved in the activity, that was covered by a local radio station PAMOJA FM 99.9. The Africa Scout Committee was represented by Mr. Naivasha. The Government of Kenya was represented by the District Commissioner, Nairobi West. After the tree planting at a Nairobi School, the DC, Nairobi west, named the Garden, "Africa Scout Garden".
A continental tour de force
African NSOs also marked the day under the same theme. By the time of compiling this article, although the celebration were conducted in most of the 37 countries, only a few NSOs had sent feedback in writing. Just to highlight a few: in Zimbabwe, 13 March was celebrated throughout the country. Various activities were conducted. They included Cholera awareness campaign by Rovers in Harare, litter picking in Mutare.
Ghana had an elaborate programme consisting of a tree planting exercise, a project called
“My Thoughts, My Environment’’, whereby, Scouts represented their thoughts and feelings on the environment in their own words in writing on a large piece of cloth to be framed and displayed at the National Headquarters. There was also an environmental walk, a visit and donation to youth in prison, a clean-up exercise and entertainment
In DR Congo, the Chief Commissioner of the Scouts Federation FESCO delivered a televised message on the national broadcaster (RTNC). Scouts also planted trees and held a walk.
In Senegal, Scouts held discussions on the theme, “Environemental awareness, the contribution of Senegalese Scouting ». In addition, they had an exhibition that highlighted the contribution of Scouting in the field of environment. Still in Senegal, Lamine Diawara, Director of the Dakar Operation Centre, World Scout Bureau, spoke on Convergence FM, "the Panafrican radio".
In South Africa, Mpumalanga region, a team of Scouts visited a centre for the disabled and planted trees which where donated by Mpumalanga Department of Education.
Re-launch of the U-Fund (The Scout Universal Fund)
On the occasion of the Africa Scout Day, The World Scout Bureau launched a fund-raising campaign to “help young people to help themselves” with the support of The Scout Universal Fund (“U” Fund) that was established in 1963. The focus will be from 2009 on Africa. For more information, please follow this link:
An organization of the 21st century
In a bid to give the event a global outlook, befitting an organization of the 21st century, the event was also publicized through the Social Networking Site Facebook. This allowed Scouts and friends across the world to support the event.
Branding, Communications and Identity
For the first time since 1995, Africa Scout Day was branded this year. A set of logos is available and the Africa Regional Office developed a celebration toolkit for NSOs. On the eve of the event, in a bid to publicize the event, the ARO sent press releases to its partner media houses in the region.
13th March was voted as a “Africa Scout Day” the Council of Ministers of the Organization of
African Unity, OAU – a predecessor of the African Union (AU) – during its 62nd Ordinary
Session in Addis Ababa in Ethiopia on 21st – 23rd June 1995
Other related documents are linked to this story on the right hand section.
Compiled by Euloge Ishimwe
Communications Unit Manager
WSB - Africa
Picture: © WSB/ARO Brian