For the 24th World Scout Jamboree, Nottinghamshire was given the chance to send even more young people than in previous years on the adventure of a lifetime to North America! This means that 56 Scouts and Explorers from Nottinghamshire have been selected to form Units 007 and 008. I am an Assistant Unit Leader for Unit 008 – The Octopirates! We are formed of 18 young people from Nottinghamshire and 18 young people from Staffordshire, with two leaders from each county too.

Each member of our Unit went through a tough selection process which involved writing an application and attending a chilly selection camp in November 2017 year where they took part in lots of activities from team building to thinking about what scouting means to them. I know it was a difficult decision for those having to pick from so many fantastic young people, but by Christmas 2017 we had our complete Unit 008!

Our first meet up was 13th January 2018 at Rolleston Scout HQ. The day started with an info session for all our Unit members and their parents. We had a great turn out! After the info session the parents left us to it, and we did loads of games and challenges, including the Silly Olympics!

Then it was down to business, now that we had all got to know each other a bit better. First on the agenda was to create a code of conduct between us all, so that we could agree to respect each other and work together throughout our time as a Unit. To us as leaders, it is really important that, in line with the rest of Scouting, the Jamboree experience for Unit 8 is as Youth Shaped as we can make it!

Next, we brainstormed lots of ideas for our Unit identity. We had a huge array ideas, and eventually through voting we came up with a logo idea! Our members are busy designing our awesome octopus logo and sending in their ideas, which we will vote on and announce publicly soon!

Meanwhile, fundraising begins! Each Unit member has £3,700 to raise before we leave for the Jamboree. This may seem like a lot, but it includes flights and transfers, all meals and activities at the Jamboree, a big city experience and UK contingent event in the USA, and Hosted Hospitality. It also includes all pre-departure training events and camps, kit and a contribution to a fund that helps a Scout attend the World Scout Jamboree who is from a country where Scouting is not as well supported as it is here in the UK.

If you come across any of our Jamboree Scouts and Explorers, please do support them! They are working very hard to organise lots of great events.

We will keep you updated here about our Jamboree Journey – we’ve got lots planned!
You can also follow our journey on social media: @unit8_uk24wsj on Twitter and Instagram and Unit8UK24WSJ on Facebook.