Every year the 5th Saffron Walden Scout Group supports nearly 100 local young people enjoy new adventures; to experience the outdoors, interact with others, gain confidence and have the opportunity to reach their full potential.
Our group consists of 3 sections, Beavers (6-8 years), Cubs (8-10½ years) and Scouts (10½-11 years) which meet on a weekly basis during term time. The leaders are volunteers who work hard to provide a balanced, varied and interesting programme of adventurous activities, life skills and community support.
This year, the leaders have set themselves a challenge to take 45 of the group from all sections on an international trip.
A trip abroad brings unique experiences that we cannot get through a regular pack night or even from a camp in the UK. This trip specifically gives the young people a chance to experience a foreign culture and to recognise and celebrate the similarities and differences of young people in a different country. It gives them the opportunity to try different foods, hear a different language and take in the local culture and architecture.
This trip in particular links in to the centenary of the end of the First World War which is being commemorated this year. Ypres was the site of many key battles of the first world war including Passchendaele and the Christmas day truce of 1914. Choosing Ypres as the destination provides a focus for scouting activities whilst on the trip and in the run up to October. In addition to meeting a Belgian scout group, they will visit some of the war graves (specifically searching out those of soldiers from Saffron Walden), battlefields and a reconstructed WWI trench.
The highlight of the trip will undoubtedly be participating in the last post ceremony at the Mennin Gate where they will lay wreaths on behalf of the Group and local Royal British Legion.
But it’s not all about the war! They will also be undertaking some traditional scouting activities and having some fun along the way!