October 2000 Home

"Eurofax is the monthly newsletter of the European Scout Region. It is produced by the European Scout Office and is distributed to all member associations in the European Region, and others. Reproduction of articles without alteration is encouraged but Eurofax should be acknowledged as the source of the information."

2nd Forum on Youth Programme and Adult Resources

Following the success of the 1st Forum on Youth Programme and Adult Resources held in May 1999 and successive sub-regional events, the European Scout Committee has scheduled a 2nd Forum to be held from 19-26 May 2001. The focus of the forum will be on membership development, treated from the viewpoint of youth programme and adult resources management. We hope once again to gather more than 100 participants with the goal of sharing ideas and experiences and developing new concepts and tools. If you are involved in youth programme development or management of adult resources, please plan to join us in Mollina, Malaga, Spain next May. The invitation for the 2nd Forum is in October's EuroPak, and will be available shortly on the European Scout Region's web-site.

Tragic news of Polish Sea Scouts

In September, we were all very saddened to receive the tragic news of the seven young Sea Scouts, members of the Polish Scouting and Guiding Association, who were killed when their yacht, the OBieszczady', collided with a tanker in the North Sea, 20 miles from the Danish coast. Only one Scout, a 19-year-old girl, survived. The cause of the accident is still unclear, however, it has been confirmed that the yacht was in good condition and the crew were all well-qualified. The ZHP has undertaken all necessary measures to support the families of the victims, including arranging a visit to Denmark to bid farewell to the young sailors. A two-month mourning period in the ZHP has been announced. Our thoughts, prayers and heartfelt sympathies are with the sailors and their families, as well as with our brother and sister Scouts in the ZHP.

International Year of Volunteers

The United Nations General Assembly has declared 2001 the OInternational Year of Volunteers' and has called for greater support of volunteering in a fast-paced and changing society. In a letter to International Commissioners, Secretary General Jacques Moreillon, has encouraged National Scout Associations to involve themselves in this important initiative. He invites NSOs to participate in the XVIth Biennial IAVE World Volunteer Conference, in Amsterdam, from 14-18 January 2001. Beforehand, a Pre-Conference for Youth will gather some 200 representatives of youth organisations to review achievements in volunteerism made since the last conference in Edmonton, Canada (1998), and to consider future obstacles and the way forward. Shana McElroy will represent the WOSM on the planning team of the Youth Pre-Conference. Please contact Shana (email: to register for either this or the IAVE Conference. The conference web-site at: also offers information.

Bécours 2000 World Solidarity Camp

For one terrific week this summer, from 27 July to 3 August, some 1,000 French Rovers and Venture Scouts gathered with their compatriots from around the world to celebrate the 2000 World Solidarity Camp at Bécours, the National Centre of the Eclaireuses et Eclaireurs de France. Young participants from 30 countries and five scout regions (Interamerican, Arab, Africa, Asia-Pacific and European), together with their French brother and sister Scouts, discovered this region of France through various activities and projects. These included a two-day hike combining discovery and community service; exercises centred on the topic of communication; and activities together with associations that work towards solidarity with the disadvantaged in society. Two emotion-filled days completed the week-long programme. All the participants met with the local population to inform them about Scouting. To close the event, a Festival of Culture provided a unique opportunity to discover the traditions of the many different nationalities present. The Camp paved the way for future exchanges between French Rovers and Venture Scouts and their colleagues around the world. Congratulations to the Eclaireuses et Eclaireurs de France for the huge success of Bécours 2000!

First round of sub-regional events

The European Scout Region has over the last year organised four sub-regional events as a follow-up to the 1st Forum on Youth Programme and Adult Resources held in Malta in 1999. This first round of events has gathered about 150 participants from 20 countries and has given the Youth Programme and Adult Resources teams an excellent opportunity to work together for a weekend, get some input and share ideas and experiences. Evaluations ave been very positive and many partnerships have been established across boarders. The Czechs and the Slovaks have established co-operation in the field of youth programme development; the Maltese and the Israelis are sharing ideas in the field of management of local groups; and the Lithuanians and the Irish will exchange trainers. In the European Scout Region we believe that sub-regional events fill the gap between forums and workshops. Forums attract a large number of participants but only a few representatives of each association, while workshops for the most part involve representatives of only one or two associations. On the other hand, sub-regional events bring together more representatives from each and from many associations. In the region, we find that the range of events we have developed covers the needs of associations and is at the same time an efficient use of resources. For 2001 we have already made agreements to run another round of sub-regional events for the four sub-regions that held an event this year. If you would like to hold a sub-regional event, you should contact your neighbouring associations and agree on the time, place and topics. Then contact the European Scout Office and we will ensure that your request will be fulfilled.

Global Development Village, Expo 2000

The German Scout and German Guide Federations organised a superb exhibition called the OGlobal Development Village', at Expo 2000 in Hanover from 7-27 August. More than 300 Scouts and Guides, largely from Germany but also from Iceland, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Kazachstan, Kosovo, Nepal, Poland, Rwanda and Turkey, wholeheartedly threw themselves into the project. Multicultural activities and workshops explored the theme of OHumanity-Nature-Technology' and featured an earthquake simulator from Turkey; a look at child labour in Nepal; a study of the environment and energy involving the use of solar boilers; and an analysis of landmines. Good old-fashioned knot-tying and paper-making also played a part. Visitors were keen to discover the principles and practices of Scouting and Guiding. Work, education and fun were a winning combination at this memorable exhibition.

National Jamboree in Estonia

The Estonian Scout Association and the Estonian Guide Union are joining forces to organise a national jamboree in Estonia from 14-22 July 2001, to celebrate the theme of OHoimusild', the OBridge of the Tribes'. You are invited to join them as they investigate how their ancestors lived in the forest of Tagametsa without modern conveniences such as telephones, computers and electricity. They will also look back on Estonia's rebirth as an independent nation in 1991. Join the anticipated 1,000 participants and discover the spell that Tagametsa casts on the hearts of Estonians. Contact Tiia Lillemaa at email: for more information.

Roverway 2003 deadline extension

Following the call for Associations to host Roverway 2003, which was published in July/August EuroPak, the deadline for applications has been extended to 31 December 2000. Please refer to the guidelines already circulated on making a proposal to host the event and submit applications to the European Scout Office.

A Summer in the Swiss Alps

More than 7,000 Scouts visited Kandersteg International Scout Centre this summer, following in the footsteps of Baden-Powell and, we hope, OLiving their Dream'. They came from around 30 different countries and took part in the three themes of the Centre: International Friendship, High Adventure, and Environment. Visitors tried new activities, learned new skills and made new friends. Climbing, craft and nature workshops, bus trips to Bern, the Flag Break and KanderGames, the International BBQ and the campfire all featured prominently. Some Scouts hiked in the Swiss Alps to visit a traditional Swiss cheese dairy.

August 1st is Swiss National Day and after the rainiest July in years, we had a splendid day with nothing but sunshine for our more than 1,200 guests. The day started with breakfast at the sports field, followed by aerobics, games, and an afternoon carnival. After a BBQ dinner in front of the Chalet, all the Scouts met again, this time in full uniform, for a torch-lit parade into the village to celebrate with the people of Kandersteg. The Staff, speaking in their native languages, welcomed all the guests, showing the Centre's great cultural diversity.

Each season at Kandersteg is different and each is special in its own way. Summer and winter mean more guests and more programmes; spring and autumn mean more preparation and maintenance work. A vital part of the Centre is the international staff team made up of young people who are over 18, a Scout or a Guide and who are able to speak English. Every three months, a new group arrives, each one a stranger; every three months, a team leaves, each one a friend. OShort term' staff join for the three months of a season as full volunteers and work in all areas of the Centre. OLong Term' staff join for between four and nine months, have a specific area of responsibility, and receive some pocket money. This past summer saw a staff team of 42 young people join us from 17 different countries, from the USA to Romania to South Africa, from Colombia to Iceland and Australia. All of them worked hard to help make the OMagic of Kandersteg' a reality for our guests and for each other. For more information about how you can experience this magic for yourself, please write to us at Kandersteg International Scout Centre, CH-3718 Kandersteg, Switzerland. Our web site is: Telephone us at: +41.33 675 82 82 or email us at:

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