The Task was to provide training courses for Uganda Scout Leaders in basic Scouting skills. Each course was to cater for up to 40 participants but in fact many more turned up.
Each course lasted for 5 days starting Thursday and dispersing Tuesday.
The UK Team was made up of experienced Scout and Guide Trainers as well as from industry. More than 12 adults set up base at the Avonja Scout Headquarters at Bwendi in Jinja east of Kampala. The site is luxurious by Ugandan camp standards boasting toilets, showers and a kitchen facilities. (cooking is over charcoal and pressure stoves).
Accommodation was in tents brought with them from the UK. Food, which is in plentiful supply in Uganda, was bought and prepared centrally with each team member taking his or her turn to do whatever was necessary.
Such free time as there was enabled the team to visit Kampala and a game park visits.
The various Members skill areas included Pioneering, Camping Standards, First Aid, Environmental Protection, Knotting and Fishing. This last skill helps to provide food for them during the stay.
Amongst the multi skilled Training Team was John Wilkinson, a Venture Scout Leader for the Shopover Unit in Oxford and whilst passing on his Pioneering skills he was able to use his paid job as a Minister with the United Reform Church Minister to deal with the Spiritual aspects of Scouting.
Team Members have reported a huge success in the Training Sessions. Traditionally learning in Uganda is by rote (there are just as few resources for teaching adults as there are for teaching children) but the UK style of participative training was taken on board with enthusiasm.
Later Contingent Leader, Eric Goulding saw evidence of the benefits of the course on his visits to the Uganda 2000 Districts where the blackboard lecture was being replaced with enthusiastic discussion and brain storming.
Such was the success that the UK is under pressure to follow up these courses with further training. However the intention is that having acquired the skills and the method training of Ugandan Scout Leaders should for the most part be done by Ugandans.