Genny Ndayisenga, member of the 350 Burundi team reports back here on the Climate Leadership Workshop held last week during the 6th African Scout Jamboree.
More than 600 Scouts from 37 countries were gathered since the 28th July to the 05th of August in Bungere – central part of Burundi- where the 6th Africa Scout Jamboree. A first experience in the history of Scout movement in Burundi.
The 350 Burundi team arrived in Bungere Sunday afternoon, on the 29th July. The view was splendid, the flags of all countries present erected, dozens of tents scattered here and there in nature surrounded with few infrastructures. Everyone had to sleep in a tent and almost every participant got his sleeping bag but fortunately solidarity spirit and love were present at the Jamboree and there was room for everyone!
The Jamboree was very lively; Scouts had fun with games, chants, sports activities, and lots of interactions and exchanges since they were from different cultural backgrounds. The Jamboree is also an opportunity for learning. There were seminars and workshops held each day. Some topics such as climate, sustainable development, leadership & entrepreneurship, peace, sexual violence … were on the agenda. 350.org has been asked to intervene on Climate Change and Community Leadership.
Monday morning, two classes – in English and French – were formed. Unlike other workshops at the Jamboree, the 350 workshops consisted of a two-day training covering sessions ranging from climate science in general to local impacts through community leadership, campaigning and media use. Many participants expressed interest to participate in the 350 workshops including members of the international service team, a department in charge of organization for such events. However, the places were limited and a total number of 68 were trained on climate change and leadership.
During the week spent in Bungere, the 350 Burundi team also had the opportunity to host a panel discussion on climate change and showed a documentary film on climate impacts in Africa. We could see the great interest in this topic considering the turnout and most importantly the interventions which reached a consensus that climate action is urgently needed in every country and that change begins with individual and collective awareness.
The questions like ‘what is 350?’, ‘Why Africans are suffering the impacts of climate change while we do not pollute as the Global North?’, ‘What can we do to influence our peers and leaders on climate action, and how to join the 350 movement? were some of the most recurrent asked during our activities. This has strengthened in me the hope that we can solve the climate crisis. It was really encouraging to hear youth saying “No, the resolution of the crisis is neither a myth nor a dream” as some skeptics use to say and “Yes, we are ready to act for positive change!”