Scouting in Afghanistan advancing
Despite the current circumstances in Kabul, Afghanistan and its surrounding areas, efforts are being made from different sources to advance Scouting even to other provinces.
From 9 to 15 November, 31 participants with six female members coming from Kabul, Bamyam, Ghor, Halmand and Nagarhar are undergoing Basic Scout Unit Leaders Training Course, organized by the Asia Pacific Regional office of the World Organization of the Scout Movement (WOSM), in close coordination with Physiotherapy And Rehabilitation Support to Afghanistan (PARSA), a non-government organization which has been instrumental in involving many young people in Scouting through orphanages and schools.
PARSA Executive Director Ms Marnie Gustavson was the Chief Guest at the opening. She said, “I have deep respect for Afghan people and tradition. This training course is the most important job for PARSA this week and we are with you all throughout the course for the future of Scouting in Afghanistan.”
Besides PARSA, two other NGOs, Afghanistan Strategic Research and Services Organization and PEACE Group have also sent their adult leaders to this course.
Leading the course is Director Thian Hiong-Boon from Asia-Pacific Regional Office, assisted by Dr B D Sharma from India and Gul Ahmad Mustafa, Muhammad Tamim Hamkar and Jawad Omari from PARSA. Dr Andrew Petropoulos, a former National Training Commissioner from Greece, who currently serves at ISAF National Military Hospital, also giving a session on "Scouting and You."
The Asia-Pacific Region for World Scouting has been actively supporting the revival of Scouting in Afghanistan since 2003 and a number of adult training courses have been conducted since 2004.
After the course, Scout groups will emerge in 4 other districts apart from Kabul, which have no Scouting.