by Keirth France Eymard Manio and Emmanuel Reblora
From January 16-20, 2018, young scouts and adult leaders of the Boy Scouts of the Philippines (BSP) from the Southern Tagalog and Bicol Councils gathered for the 7th Southern Luzon Regional Jamborette at the National Jamboree Campsite in Mount Makiling, Los Baños, Laguna.
“The Jamborette showcased the life skills that an individual Scout should learn and acquire outside the four corners of his home and school. It was also an opportunity for them to meet other brother Scouts from other regions, provinces and cities,” said Rodolfo C. Pangilinan, the Southern Luzon Regional Scout Director of the BSP.
The Southern Luzon Regional Scout Committee organized the regional jamborette and the activities were facilitated by volunteer adult leaders from the different provincial councils. The jamborette serves as a culminating activity for all the trainings that scouts have started from their respective home schools, districts, and councils. The scouts were divided according to their respective councils for the activities during the five-day camp.
The event began and ended with the celebration of Thanksgiving Masses led by Fr. Alfonso L. Grageda in fulfillment of the scouts’ first and foremost duty, which is “Duty to God,” Director Pangilinan added.
Among the highlights of the jamborette were skills and values development-oriented programs on First Aid and Emergency Preparedness, Aquatics and Water Safety, Back to Basics Drills, Information Drive on Rabies and Dengue Prevention.
Another main event in the camp was the Global Development Village, which allowed the delegates to engage in a community service, cleanup drive, and physical fitness through different obstacle courses.
Cultural activities including Scouts Got Talent, arena shows, campfires and scout skills competition were also held to showcase the talents and abilities of the scouts. The Batangas City Council won as champion for the Scouts Got Talent activity.
“Jamborette events can do so much for the youth in the development of skills, honing of personality and attitude, and especially in teaching discipline, all of these contribute to the holistic development of the Boy Scouts,” said in Filipino by Mr. Jaime Barruja Jr., the program officer of the Masbate Council.
Barruja also shared the struggles that the Masbate delegation had to face on their way to Los Banos because of bad weather conditions. He also mentioned their achievements in the camp activities where his team ranked high in the cultural and physical activities of the Jamborette.
According to John Kier Caraan, a scout from the province of Batangas, his experience in the event had been meaningful and memorable for him because unity among the scouts was established, interactions were manifested, and different capabilities were exemplified.
He was also inspired of how the campsite was preserved and maintained by the previous scouts who once joined the same event. He believes that engaging into this jamborette would not only enhance their skills but also develop their knowledge in scouting. He also added, “the theme ‘Commitment to Excellence,’ focuses on how someone will never give up if he or she is committed to it.”
Some of the participants found the event as very challenging. There were times when they had to continue with their activities even the if it was raining. They all got filthy but all they had in mind was to accomplish their goals. Caraan’s colleague Cedric Prado who is also a scout, said that the event trains them to be disciplined and responsible individuals as well.
Moreover, Director Pangilinan added that what the boy scouts learn character development in action through the jamborette activities. The conduct ceremonies were also intended for citizenship training.
“Simple as they may seem to be, duty to country and to others are always highlighted,” the regional director added on how campings contribute to the holistic development of the delegates.
The BSP Southern Luzon Regional Office and the provincial councils consider the jamborette successful as they look forward for more skills development programs to be held in Mount Makiling.