Kenya 2000

Towards the end of 1998 East Sussex County Scout Council made the decision to select a team of young people to go out to Kenya and carry out a Millennium Project.

The leader team, headed by Vicki Clare and the then County Commissioner Robert Cheesman, were given the task of selecting 35 young people from the Venture Scout section. Among the first Ventures to be selected were Lucy Hart, Joanna Hart and Ben Richardson. The Chief Scout George Purdie attended one of the team building weekends and gave the group his blessing for a successful trip and completion of the projects.

The group were called Kenya 2000 East Sussex Scouting supporting Kenya Street Scout Projects. So began an amazing partnership with East Sussex and Kenya Scouting.

The group planned a large camp for over 80 young people from the Street Scout troops in Siaya District in the NW of Kenya.

We delivered a 6 day camp for the young people and the transport to and from camp. The young Kenyan scouts had a true camp experience with training sessions plus fun and games with the ‘mazungas’ At the end of the camp all the scouts and their leaders left with a camp scarf, full tummies and a wealth of memories of their time together in camp. The team had begun to refurbish the Scout Centre at Siaya and the chicken hut in Luanda. The chicken hut was to be a source of income to support the Street Scout Group in Luanda. This was to be the foundation of an international partnership.

Like all trips to Kenya we completed the expedition with some tourism for the team members. We visited the Baden Powell Memorial in Nyeri and enjoyed a 2 day stay at ‘The Ark”

‘Key memories from members of this group: a whole new meaning to toilet seats ….  Group members were determined to make seats by square lashing planks of wood. These were not as successful as the team hoped but the task distracted the group while putting up with a hole in the ground experience. By the end of the trip I craved for a Mars Bar – no chocolate for 14 days!  We had very simple communication systems back then, no mobile phone signals, but we did have access to a cyber café and managed to send a group email home. Fond memories of cabbage and onion with tomatoes….this was served almost every day.

Submitted by Vicki Clare on behalf of Kenya 2000