The World Scout Jamboree is a huge scout event that takes place every 4 years in different countries, often with over 50,000 scouts from all over the world attending. I attended the 25th WSJ in South Korea this Summer, with time in Seoul and at the campsite further down the coast, meeting hundreds of people from all over the world and having an amazing time. You may have heard about the issues that were encountered, including the site not being ready on time, some unsanitary conditions, and incredibly hot and humid weather, which led to the UK Contingent pulling out of the main campsite and returning to Seoul after three days. Despite these problems, the experience truly was incredible, and a memory that I will never forget.
First of all, the people I met were absolutely incredible. From random strangers in Seoul who went out of their way to be kind and welcoming, to scouts from all over the world who all came together for Jamboree, I will never forget the people there. In fact, I still keep up with a handful of people from Norway, Australia and Italy. Despite the problems, it was the people that I met that made the experience, and it is that which I will cherish for the rest of my life. Pictured below are friends I made from Angola and Australia, and it was fascinating to hear their opinions and perspectives on the world. Also, it was an opportunity to practice my broken French, and I’m sure I can speak the language better because of it.
Secondly, my time in Seoul was absolutely incredible. The city is so rich with life and vibrant, with stunning views and a fascinating mix of futuristic technology with tradition and religion. We did many activities that range from visiting towers over 500m tall and watching the sunset over the city, being toured around a museum by robots, and going to a baseball game, to visiting many temples, dressing up in the traditional Hanbok Korean dress, and writing wishes onto lanterns. Although we had an extra 9 days in Seoul that were unintentional, they allowed me and my group to go and experience unforgettable things. A particular highlight was doing karaoke on the last night, and singing my heart out with the group of friends that I have developed over two years, until I had no more voice left to sing with. I’m sure I will return to Seoul down the line and reminisce on all the unforgettable experiences that I had there.
The trip was not without its challenges of course. With temperature at 35 degrees, and humidity making it feel like 45, and mosquitoes everywhere and a typhoon rolling in, this trip has pushed me to my physical limit. Just sleeping in a tent at night required fortitude, and the suncream and bite cream were necessary in large quantities. However, these challenges have definitely taught me to be more resilient as a person, and have made me a better person.
As a teenage boy, of course one of the highlights was the food. I had little experience of Korean cuisine prior to this trip, and it hit me on the first night after eating what was called ‘spicy octopus’ on the menu. We were left in much pain and almost begging for water, however it was delicious nonetheless. My particular favourite was the Korean barbecue, where you cook your own meat on a hotplate, and garnish with kimchi and gochujang sauce – I feel that the UK would benefit from places like these!
Furthermore, the traditions and religions I observed from the multitude of temples we visited made me appreciate Buddhism and Hinduism more than previously, as it was a real privilege to watch prayer happen from inside a silent temple, and the process of removing my shoes to enter these buildings truly made them feel spiritual and special. This was one of the biggest culture shocks: the blend of tradition with the modern city.
On the evening of our first day at the Jamboree site, we were lucky enough to watch the most picturesque sunset over the site, followed by the opening ceremony. After a slight massacre of Bohemian Rhapsody by some K-pop singers, which hurt to watch as a Brit, the ceremony was truly a spectacle, in which I wholeheartedly felt like we were all together in the family of scouting. Bear Grylls made an unexpected appearance, which was pleasing to see, however he looked very sweaty – much as we all were. Fireworks and a huge drone show rounded off the evening, followed by my group doing a conga line back to our campsite to stay together in the throng of everyone.
Looking forward, my friends from the jamboree and I have decided to volunteer as IST (international support team) at the Polish jamboree in 2027, so that we can experience a proper World Scout Jamboree, and also to give back and help the community that we have grown up with. Also, after talking about my experiences to many people, I have highly recommended them to take part in future Jamborees, and also just to raise awareness that this event takes place. The Cubs that I volunteer with as a Young Leader loved the idea of it, with some saying they really wanted to go on a jamboree, and also after showing some of the neckers from other countries that I traded for they were fascinated. Overall, this experience has pushed me to my limit, but I have come back with memories I will cherish for the rest of my life. South Korea is such an incredible country, and one I wish to return to and relive the memories. The motto of the Jamboree was ‘Draw your Dream’, and although it wasn’t the dream I had been looking forward to, it was most definitely an experience of a lifetime.
I would like to say thank you to The Warwick Apprenticing Charities for your support and the generous grant that you gave me that enabled me to attend this incredible event.
Firstly, I would like to thank Warwick Apprenticing for giving me the fantastic opportunity to volunteer with Projects Abroad in Fiji. It was a unique experience and helped to broaden my understanding of the practicalities of conservation fieldwork and develop essential life skills.
I travelled to Fiji on my own and was then based at Pacific Harbour, on the Coral Coast, where I lived with other volunteers, volunteering on the project five days a week, with the opportunity to discover the local area on my days off. Volunteering for four weeks gave me a great chance to fully benefit from the project whilst having the chance to experience the local culture.
The project was based at Beqa Lagoon, an area that has become a key site for shark conservation in Fiji. The volunteering work varied between undertaking survey dives, working with local villages to plant mangroves and other community activities, alongside having the chance to gain my PADI Advanced Open Water dive qualification.
The diving involved learning more about fish anatomy to enable me to quickly learn fish identification of the indicator species alongside the shark species that were surveyed during our survey dives. We also used these skills to identify individual sharks that appeared during shark dives, along with techniques such as observing notable damage, fin shapes, and markings. Collecting this data is essential in monitoring both shark populations and the populations of important species in their food chain and the health of the reefs in which they live. To ensure the most effective use of this data, we inputted it into several different scientific databases, allowing it to be available for ongoing scientific research papers and allowing the scientific community to pinpoint the areas of greatest need and effectiveness to focus on. In addition, this experience helped me develop my understanding of data collection methods and adaptations to use such methods underwater, along with improving my scuba diving skills, such as buoyancy maintenance, while doing other tasks.
Another main focus was the mangrove reforestation programme. As part of this, a local resort partnered with the project to teach their guests about the importance of mangroves as nursery areas and to encourage them to get involved with planting. We also partnered with an island village nearby to rebuild their mangrove forests to not only support shark populations but to slow and eventually reverse the erosion of their island that has started to push locals to move to the mainland due to flooding. This programme, involving locals and tourists to go beyond the volunteers themselves, helped me develop my communication skills further to pitch the level of discussion to match whom I was speaking to and their existing knowledge of the issues. It also helped me broaden my cultural understanding by working with a Fijian village and taking part in their cultural customs for visiting villages, such as a yaqona ceremony.
Overall, the project has helped me develop two types of skills: professional and personal.
Professionally, due to my ambition to train as a vet and specialise in exotics, I have developed my diving skills, broadening the future marine work I can get involved in. I have also built connections with the project and learned about new scientific databases that will be useful for future research. Furthermore, I have been able to experience marine conservation myself, an experience that will help inform my future decisions about how I can make the most significant impact as a vet on conservation. Finally, it has also helped me to build on more general business skills such as communication, time management, and presentation through the work with local villages and tourists to get as much involvement in the project as possible.
Personally, It has also built my interpersonal skills through living and working with other volunteers from around the world to ensure the smooth running of the project and maximum impact.
It also enabled me to connect with long-term family friends from when my grandad worked in Suva, Fiji, with the most amazing visit to see them in their village while I was on placement. In addition, my 83-year-old grandad decided to travel to Fiji one last time while I was there to show me his roots.
Beyond the specifics of the project, through the experience of solo travel in a time zone very different from the UK ( I then travelled on my own for ten weeks through New Zealand and Australia), I have consolidated my independence and confidence in my abilities to manage my own affairs of planning, financials and travel without constant access to parental support.
Thank you for giving me this fantastic opportunity during my Gap Year.
I wanted to thank you for granting me money to purchase a laptop in early 2021.
I have just graduated with a 2:1 in Fashion Design with a print specialism from Northumbria University. For my final collection, one of my garments was chosen by Graduate Fashion Week to represent them in a promotional photoshoot. I was then contacted to have my dress featured in Drapers magazine “Names to watch” for their June 22 issue. Following this, I was chosen by Fenwick department store to display my dress in their Newcastle shop “Fashion Futures” window. This was displayed for 3 weeks, and I was also featured on their social medias.
None of this would have been possible without my laptop and the Adobe applications I used to create my designs. I am greatly appreciative of the support from your charity. It gave me the opportunity to finish my degree to a standard that wouldn’t have been possible without your help. This is something I can take forward with me in my career and I can’t wait for what the future holds.
I have just finished my first week of semester two at the University of Birmingham studying Geography and Urban and Regional planning. I am really enjoying the course, especially the planning modules.
I thought I would drop you a quick email to show my appreciation for my grant as it is proving useful.
Since coming back after the Christmas period, the dates for my fieldwork trip to Rotterdam have been released, so I am looking forward to this and as previously mentioned the grant will be helpful for purchasing essential kit.
Had you ever attended Outward Bound course before?
I had attended similar courses through school and thought that I had stretched myself to my limit but the OB course made me realise I could achieve so much more than I had given myself credit for and it opened up opportunities that I hadn’t considered or thought possible.
What were the highlights for you?
As with Bailey, I met new and interesting people that I have kept in touch with since.
What are the main things you can take from the experience?
I feel more confident and can take this confidence forward and continue with youth work. The effect of the pandemic on young people was especially relevant on this course. Everyone has felt so isolated during the last two years and this course was so beneficial in taking me out of my comfort zone whilst learning and gaining support from others in exactly the same position and mindset. It was amazingly confidence boosting. OB course gave everyone more confidence and ability to interact and achieve.
Plans for the future
To continue with work in the Community and to take my experience forward into the workplace.
Thank you so much to the Trustees of the Warwick Apprenticing Charity for the opportunity to attend such a life-changing and life-enhancing course.
Have you ever been on an Outward Bound experience before?
No I’ve never been to an experience like OB, I thought it was extremely adventurous and it boosted my confidence a lot with meeting new people and introducing myself to them. We had a lot of fun with the activities we took part in – the instructors were really friendly. I would really recommend the course to anyone of my age, definitely one of the best experiences.
What were the highlights for you?
I made a lot of friends there that I have kept in touch with. I learned organizational skills that have translated into my dealing with young rowdy teenagers and for the future I have the Certificate of attendance that will stand me in good stead in the workplace with the new skills I have acquired.
What are the main things you can take from the experience?
New ideas as to how to interact with teenagers. With the OB Certificate it gives me credibility to continue with youth work and eventually to specialize in the area of children and young people with special needs.
What are your plans for the future
To continue with specialized youth work and also to go into a business such as flooring where I can continue to help in the community and work with more confidence with customers.
What are the main issues that affect young people nowadays and how an experience such as this can be helpful
In my opinion the most important area with young people nowadays is their mental health. I met people on the course struggling with mental health and confidence issues and other disabilities; this is where the course with all the physical activities with confidence and learning benefits created supportive groups for the benefit of everyone there and made everyone feel inclusive regardless of physical or mental issues.
Operator of the Year 2022 – Camera Operator | Editor at Sky News
It’s been an incredible year filled with adventures and amazing people so I’ve put together a showreel. This year I won the RTS camera operator of the year award – something I never thought I had a chance of winning! I travelled to Ukraine a few times, saw famine in Somaliland and witnessed how deforestation is affecting indigenous tribes in the Amazon rainforest. What a year it’s been. I’m so thankful for the opportunities and the people I’ve worked with… here’s to 2023
I just wanted to give you an update of what I’ve been doing since I was awarded with my grant from Warwick Apprenticing Charities.
I have completed my first term of my second year at Guildhall School of Music and Drama, through which I have worked on numerous shows including a triple bill Opera and Our Town. During my time in my first term, I took on the roles as Scenic Carpenter assistant and Production Assistant. As this is my first year of working on the school’s production, I have learnt so many skills and understood the process of such roles, creating invaluable experiences for when I leave uni. Through this first term, I have learnt that production management might be a stream that I would be keen on venturing down. However, much learning will have to take place for me to take this step. I will follow into my third year, eventually taking up the role of Production Manager on one of the productions.
I have challenged myself with my skills, learning the role of Production Manager, as this is a completely new avenue for me. However, seeing this perspective of a production has given me a new found ambition. I am excited to see where this adventure will take me.
The Warwick Apprenticing Charities grant has allowed me the opportunity to live in the heart of London, with only a 25 minute cycle from my university. This has made it very convenient for me to get to uni as well as around London. Alongside this, living in my area of London has given me the opportunity to work in theatre. Luckily, last term I was offered the opportunity to become a dep stage hand at Moulin Rouge the Musical. This will mean I work behind the scenes at a popular West End musical, learning the inside knowledge of a show to take on into my career.
I have commenced my second term at university, within which I will be undertaking the roles of Scenic Art assistant and Prop making assistant. I am very grateful for Warwick Apprenticing Charities for this opportunity, and I look forward to updating you for this next term ahead.
Just wanted to update you on how my first semester at Bath went with the laptop – it’s been really amazing and versatile in making notes and writing essays and conducting and completing psychological studies with. It has already made such a huge benefit to my education and made settling into University work really easy.
I hope you are well. I just wanted to email you and update you on my past year at the University of Bath, studying accounting and finance and thank you again for awarding the grant which has massively aided my first year.
I am currently applying for my placement in my third year which I am hoping to enter either Finance at a top firm in London or at a big 4 accounting firm ideally in Birmingham.
I have completed with my first year with a predicted grade of a first (1:1) which I hope I can carry to second year. The academics have been challenging but at the same time rewarding, and modules including law and finance I have greatly enjoyed. But not only has the academic side been brilliant but also the opportunities the university has offered. I competed at the British National Championships (BUCS) for Karate in Sheffield, a club which I have just been awarded Women’s captain for the coming year. I have also been playing BUCS level Netball playing within the university against rival universities, and met so many incredible and talented people through it. I have also attended the finance society which I hope to continue next year, as well as gaining the role of Student ambassador, a surprisingly challenging application process. The grant has been fantastic in offering me the opportunity to partake in these extra curricular activities, whilst also affording me the textbooks and other equipment needed to help me succeed in my studies. I am truly and thoroughly enjoying my time at university and cannot thank you enough, or express how the grant has improved this experience.
I just wanted to get in touch to let you know how I have used the grant which the charity provided me last year.
This July I travelled to the Yucatan Peninsula of Mexico where I spent two weeks as an Undergraduate Research Assistant with Operation Wallacea. This involved working alongside scientists in the field on research topics in biodiversity and conservation and helping to gather primary data. During the first week, I was based in the UNESCO Calakmul Biosphere Reserve. Through a series of evening lectures, I completed an introduction to the Ancient Maya and Mayan Jungle Ecology course. Each day I aided teams of field biologists to complete standardised surveys on a series of key taxa to assess the importance of the unique Aguada habitats. This included setting up mist nests to catch birds and bats as well as analysing camera trap data. I also visisted and climbed the ancient temples of Calakmul. In the second week, I completed a Caribbean Marine Ecology course including the survey techniques used in the marine environment to assess the status of reefs and their associated fish communities. Each day I went on multiple snorkel surveys in Akumal Bay and collected primary data contributing to projects monitoring Sea Turtles and Seagrass ecosystems. All whilst meeting other University students from around the world with similar interests and making some friends for life.
This experience really was once in a lifetime and I wouldn’t have been able to fund it without your grant so I am really grateful!
Dear Mr Houghton and Mr Brown,
I’m writing to thank and update you on how well my first year at University went thanks to the help of the Warwick Apprenticing Charities.
Your assistance helped to pay for my yearly Bus pass which got me to and from Uni where I passed my first year achieving:
- 2.2- Statistics for Economics
- 2.2- Mathematical Economics
- 1st- Principles of Microeconomics
- 2.1- Principles of Macroeconomics
- 2.1- Political Philosophy
- 2.1- Philosophy Toolkit
- 2.1- Foundations International relations
- 2.1- Foundations in Politics
With the support of the Warwick apprenticing charities, I also paid the membership fees for the many societies I joined over the last year. These included; Politics Society, Econ Society, Pool and Snooker Society and Poker Society. My involvement in these societies allowed me to meet new people and have multiple friendship groups since joining university which really helped me with the settling in process. My proudest achievement at university so far came as a result of my involvement in the Politics Football team this year where I became the only fresher to land a role on the club committee as the Social Media Secretary, where I run the clubs account @uolpoliticsfc on instagram. As far as performance on the pitch is concerned, our 1st team finished in 7th place in the 1st devision and our 2nd team side also finished in 7th in their first season for the club, competing in the UoL 2nd devision of campus league.
Without to your contribution to my first year of university I doubt I would’ve had the financial freedom to explore all of the societies and opportunities they provided and for that I am really thankful for the backing of the Warwick apprenticing charities.
I’ve attached some relevant pictures to share how much I’ve enjoyed my university experience so far and hope that my second year is just as fun!
- Politics Fc Lads after our 8-1 win against engineering
- Pool and Pizza Social for Pool Society
- My unfurnished uni room when I moved in
- Some of the football lads and I representing at the politics ball
- My flatmates and I at crazy golf for my Birthday
- Another friendship group that I met in Halls
- the only actual photo I have of my room unfortunately
- A few of the Econ boys and I at the Economics Ball
Once again I’d like to thank yourselves and the Warwick apprenticing charities for your contribution to my First year at University.
I can’t begin to express my gratitude for funding me to go onto this course. The Outward Bound skills for life award has been one of the most challenging yet amazing experiences of my entire life. I have done things that I never thought I could ever achieve from jumping off crazy high gorge cliffs, to just keeping up with the rest of the group when climbing mountains (I was usually the one they were waiting for) in the final expeditions. I have learnt so much about myself from doing it, while yes I might still be a slight introvert I have realised that I have the ability to get on with almost everyone and I’ve made so many more new friends from the course that I’m sure I’ll stay in touch with now for the rest of my life. I think this is one of the greatest products of the course, that I have met and socialised with different people from all over the country and in some cases the world.
So thank you again for one of, if not the best experience of my life
This summer I completed the Outward Bound Skills for Life Award and I am writing to thank you for funding me and giving me the chance to have experienced this wonderful opportunity.
The 19 days that I spent at the Outward Bound Ullswater centre were some of the best days I have and ever will experience. The activities and tasks that we were set to do were something that I never would have done or will get the chance to do, if I hadn’t been able to go on the course. Activities such as gauge walking and cliff jumping have made me become a better team worker and have allowed me to develop my skills, enriching me as a person with attributes that I can now take into future situations and am able to complete with a new perspective. Additionally before I had gone on the course I was lacking confidence, however meeting all the new people on the Skills for Life course has made become more confident within myself through their support and me being able to express myself and my ideas to people I had never met previously. Due to the course, I have made some life-long friends from across the world who taught many things and I am extremely grateful for this.
Before the course, I had a slightly pessimistic attitude towards things and didn’t always take up opportunities when given them. However Outward Bound has given me a new perspective and has encouraged me to grab those chances when presented them as they may never arise again. The expeditions allowed me to see that I am able to do things that I didn’t think I was able to. They made me a much more resilient person as I know giving up is never the answer because if you work hard, the outcome that you receive is much more satisfying and valuable than when giving up. The lessons that I have learnt on the Outward Bound course will stay with me for life and have made me a much happier and better person.
I would just like to sincerely thank you once again for providing me with this opportunity.
I have just returned from the outward bound centre in Ullswater after completing the skills for life award.
I want to thank you very much for funding me to attend the course. It was the best 3 weeks of my life so far. I’ve made so many new amazing friends and participated in activities I would never have done if I didn’t do this course; like climbing Scarfell pike and Helvellyn. I even got to meet the Duke of Edinburgh and speak to him! I will definitely be keeping in contact with people on the course, I already have reunions planned for October.
I’ve also developed lots of new skills which I would be able to transfer into my future career. I’ve especially developed my leadership and teamwork, because on expedition we had to take it in turns to be the team leader to do the days navigation. All the activities we did required good teamwork and communication, so I think I’ve become very successful in these areas over the 3 weeks. On the 12 hour solo, I reflected upon what I had been doing and I really think the skills for life course has boosted my confidence, so much so I feel that going to university is something that I can do. Before, I was worried I couldn’t meet new people and be away from home, but going on outward bound has made me realise that I don’t get homesick and I love meeting new people!
Thank you ever so much again..