Unity Scouts and Guides reached a milestone when we had our first ever combined camp between both units. In addition to fostering better relations between brother Scouts and sister Guides, it provides an opportunity for both units to learn skills from each other as well as to work together as a team. The camp committee was made up of the senior scouts and guides from both sides, with Weihao and Shiyun taking the roles of camp chief and vice camp chief respectively. This time round, the leaders and teachers played a minor role in advising the committee as we felt that this camp will give the committee an opportunity to take the lead and use this as a valuable learning experience.
The earlier part of the first day started off shakily, partly due to the inexperience as well as miscommunication between the camp committee. We experienced a drizzle but thank God we had fine weather the rest of the camp. Camp development took up the better part of the morning and afternoon before we commenced on the next activity: outdoor cooking! For the majority of Scouts and Guides, outdoor cooking is an exciting event as we get a chance to cook using primitive methods instead of the usual gas stove. The dishes to cook were simple. Rice, vegetables and chicken. However, the methods were difficult as the fire must be kept alive while at the same time, not too big enough to burn the food. There are no knobs where you can turn the flame down or up, just a lot of blowing. Many got their eyes watery from the smoke, but it was a good experience nonetheless. It was regrettable that some did not manage to cook their food successfully but hopefully in future, there’ll be other chances at giving outdoor cooking another shot.
Due to time constraints, camp committee cancelled the night hike and replaced it with the dreaded solo night. Scouts and Guides were allocated locations around the school and they must stay at their positions alone for 1 and a half hours. It was a test of courage, though some of them had more ‘scarier’ positions than others. Bath + supper rejuvenated everyone and most knock off quickly the moment they stepped into the tents.
The second day came by quickly. Morning exercise was followed by breakfast before an inspection was conducted for all the campers. The purpose of inspection was to air our clothing and other stuff as well as to ensure proper hygiene. This is especially important since camp hygiene is a top priority. Footdrill was next after flagbreak followed by a group photo taking session infront of the general office. Lunch wasn’t very appetizing but most are too hungry to be bothered. To round off the last few hours of the camp, we played some team games. Simple games like Jacob’s Ladder and Dog&Bone – Water version which everyone enjoyed. After the games came the clearing up part. The end of camp was finally over and everyone went back home by 5pm.
All in all, the camp committee did a pretty decent job in running the camp even though they were inexperienced in many areas. There were minor hiccups, last minute programme changes, food and other issues. However, they managed to work together as a team, and to ensure that the camp runs as smoothly as possible. For those who don’t know, the camp committee was the first to get up and last to go to bed. It is a very tiring and thankless job, especially if the camp is not up to standard. I hope that this will be a valuable learning experience not only to the camp committee, but to the rest as well.
Meanwhile, do enjoy the photos!