Nairobi, Kenya: The 9th Africa Scout Youth Forum has today opened at the Don Bosco Youth Educational Services Centre in Karen, Nairobi, Kenya with 36 participants coming from 25 countries across Sub Saharan Africa. The countries represented are Botswana, Burundi, Cameroon, Chad, Comoros, Cote d’Ivoire, Democratic Republic of Congo, Ethiopia, Gambia, Ghana, Guinea Bissau, Kenya, Lesotho, Liberia, Namibia, Niger, Nigeria, Rwanda, Senegal, Seychelles, South Africa, Tanzania, Togo, Uganda, and Zimbabwe.
The Youth Forum is a platform for youth members of Scouting in Africa to discuss different issues and make recommendations to the Africa Scout Conference in a bid to increase youth participation in decision-making processes at regional level.
During the three-day event which ends on 23rd August, the young people will engage in a series of discussions, workshops and learning sessions geared towards enhancing their capacities in leadership and community development. The Forum is convened under the theme is “Shaping Connected Futures” with sub themes on young people and development, resilience and adaptability, connections between people, sustainability, advocacy and influence, and technology and innovation.
Sheldon Marumbu, the Chairperson of the National Youth Forum at Kenya Scouts Association challenged the participants saying that, “We are leaders of change and that is what should always define us as Scouts.” He also took the opportunity to invite the participants to the 1st Africa Rover Moot taking place in Kenya from 15-25 April 2023.
Soumana Ide Mamane Lamine, a Youth Advisor to the World Scout Committee encouraged the participants to take seriously their presence at the Youth Forum and the role they’re playing will impact many more young people across Africa. “Let us never forget that it’s the diversity that make us strong. You have a big responsibility here and we expect you to make the best of it,” he added.
Kathleen Godfrey, Chairperson of the 9th Africa Scout Youth Forum on behalf of the team of Youth Advisors to the Africa Scout Committee mentioned that there are five key things that are important to drive youth engagement – inspire, influence, innovate, involve, and impact. “As Scouts we work together in groups and teams to create impact. We may not always have the perfect circumstances, but we can always work from where we are, with who are to make a change and to move humanity forward,” she said.
On his part Frederic Tutu Kama-Kama, the Regional Director for Africa expressed his joy saying that it’s exciting to finally meet after four years since the last Youth Forum in Harare in 2028. “We’re living in a disrupted world that is full of conflicts and disagreements, but we should always find a way to live with each other peacefully,” he said while congratulating the Kenyan people for a peaceful election process. He called on young people to always “do it for humanity.”
The Chief Guest, Roy Sasaka Telewa, the Chief Executive Officer at the Kenya National Youth Council while speaking at the opening ceremony said the Youth Councils are strategic partners to the Scouting movement in driving the youth agenda in our countries. “The challenges we’re facing as a continent are huge and we need to be prepared to contribute towards addressing them sustainably – with the young people at the heart of these efforts. This is the burden of leadership we’ve been given as Scouts – to ensure that we make a difference.” He urged the Scouts to continue being peace ambassadors and ensure they take up leadership roles to address the gap in leadership and contribute directly to the sustainability of the continent while ensuring inter-generational collaboration.
Among the key outcomes expected from the Youth Forum include a set of recommendations to the 18th Africa Scout Conference on the youth perspective on different issues affecting young people and the movement in Africa and beyond. The Youth Forum will also elect a new team of six Youth Advisors to the Africa Scout Committee for the 2022-2025 period.
The participants will later transition to the 18th Africa Scout Conference due to take place at the KCB Leadership Centre in Karen, Nairobi from 25th to 28th August 2022.
Notes to the Editor
The Africa Scout Youth Forum is an event of the Africa Region of the World Organization of the Scout Movement held every three years. This 9th edition was supposed to take place in 2021 but was postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Visit https://africa.scoutconference.org for more information and news.
For media enquiries contact:
Senior Manager, Communications and Partnerships – World Scout Bureau Africa Support Centre
Telephone: (Office) +254 20 245 0985 | +254 728 496553 | (Personal) +254 726 951296
Email: (Office) email@example.com | (Personal) firstname.lastname@example.org