It was the experience of a lifetime for Queenstown Rangers Zoe Baylis and Brianna Ricketts, along with Queenstown Ranger leader Pamela Rogers, Papawai Ranger leaders Niki Swabey and Gina Chaney, and mascot Kiri the Kiwi. We enjoyed twelve days of fun and Dutch adventure in the Limburg Province of the Netherlands as we lived up to the Jamborette mantra of ‘Discover the World’.
We were five kiwis from the other side of the world who mixed with 280 Scouts and Guides from Luxembourg, Israel, the UK, Jordan, Canada, Germany, Spain and of course the Netherlands.
Jamborette activities included games discovering each other’s cultures, awesome campfires, writing up our own daily ’news sheet’ and incredible day trips that showcased the Netherlands. We explored Amsterdam, the Ardennes, the Limburg Province itself, The Hague and Maarstricht. One afternoon we all shared cultural dishes from our countries with the kiwis making yummy South Island cheese rolls to share. A great night activity, The Drop Out, was getting taken by bus about 20 minutes’ drive away from camp, being dropped off in a group and having to find out own way back, collecting a hardboiled egg and the day’s newspaper along the way, as well as learning to say bicycle in each other’s language.
We met lots of new friends; learnt new skills, words (such as ‘dank u vel’ – thank you) and songs (‘The Moose’ song – thanks Canada!); and discovered that the Dutch eat a lot of bread (with chocolate sprinkles for breakfast).
At the end of Jamborette the five of us journeyed to Our Chalet to visit our Guiding World Home, enjoyed a tour and took part in the Our Chalet pinning Ceremony.
It was an incredible experience that absolutely proved that we are indeed one of a 10 million-strong community, and that Guiding and Scouting are one big international sister/brotherhood.