Cultural exchange at the heart of the Jamboree

Photo by Andrew Tanner

Sixteen year old Sibusiso Mbhele was one of 4 Scouts that received financial support to attend the 24th World Scout Jamboree in West Virginia in America. With the support of the World Scout Solidarity Fund and generous donations from Scout Groups, parents and members of the public, Sibusiso was able to travel to another country for the very first time to meet thousands of Scouting peers.

I never thought that I would go to another country”, explains Sibusiso. “The whole trip to the Jamboree was very educational! I was also able to explore a well-known tourist destination. It is any person’s dream to travel to America”, he says with a smile.

Sibusiso lives in Umlazi, a township on the east coast of KwaZulu-Natal, with his aunt. He excels academically and holds true to his Scouting values. He often enthusiastically gets involved in local community service projects. He has been an active member of the 1st Umlazi Scout Group since 2011, where his aunt is currently the Troop Scouter and a District Commissioner.

Photo: Andrew Tanner,  L2R Lesedi, Sibusiso and Khaya

Experiencing the World Scout Jamboree has taught me a lot of Scouting skills”, he continues. “I learnt about different cultures and met new people! But, I did not forget about my own culture and I made sure to share what I as South African Zulu boy do. I think that Scouts from other countries learnt something from that”, he says proudly. Sibusiso’s favourite activities at the Jamboree were rock climbing and mountain biking.

“I would like to take this opportunity to thank the KZN Scouts and all of the people that made my first trip abroad to the 24th World Scout Jamboree a successful one. You made it possible for me to represent South Africa in another country at no cost. I will cherish this experience for the rest of my life. I will share it with my relatives, children, and also my grandchildren – if I’m still alive by God’s will at that time.”

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