Hike to Mahikeng Challenge

While we are not allowed to meet as a troop/pack/crew under Level 3 lockdown restrictions, scouting continues. With Level 3 comes the ability to get into the open but not as organised groups. With this in mind, Scouts SA encourages families to get out and get some exercise. With this in mind they have put together the “Hike to Mahikeng” award which lasts until the end of July.

All scouts, cubs, rovers and their parents are encouraged to get some exercise and let us know how far your hiked, walked or ran. The official text is reproduced below:

“Baden Powell travelled 1290 km from the then Cape Town Province to Mahikeng. Whilst on lockdown during the Siege of Mahikeng, the seed of Scouting was planted.

Globally we have all been experiencing various forms of lockdown. However as Scouts we all understand and appreciate the benefits of some fresh air, exercise and a change of scenery.

So, SCOUTS South Africa challenges all Meerkats, Cubs, Scouts, Rovers, adults and parents to get up, get moving and “step” into BP’s footsteps by “virtually” making your way along the historical trail he followed. Join the global #HikeToMahikeng!

Hike in total 20km over the next 6 weeks within your home, garden or neighbourhood (under 7 year olds hike 10kms.) Complete your portion of the journey before World Scout Scarf Day (1 August) to earn a #HikeToMahikeng badge. A Scout Group whose members cumulatively achieve the complete distance of 1290kms will receive a digital commemorative certificate from SCOUTS South Africa.

Be sure to be seen by wearing your purple Scouting wear. Encourage others to hike along by posting your action shots with #HiketoMahikeng on social media!

Once completed, Scouters may purchase the badges @10 rand each at shop@scouts.org.za and indicate whether the Group completed the full distance. Proceeds from the badge sales will go towards sustaining Scouting throughout South Africa.

Your honour will be your word!

Brendon Hausberger
Chief Scout of South Africa”

We will be posting updates on our Hike to Mahikeng page on this site on a weekly basis to see if we can get to Mahikeng as a group. If you exercise please email 1stclaremont@gmail.com with your distance and we will add it to the total. To date we have hiked 293 kms, leaving us just under 1000kms to go in 6 weeks.

Permanent link to this article: https://1stclaremont.org.za/1stclaremont-scouts/hike-to-mahikeng-challenge/

Alex on the Goosechase

About two weeks ago, 1st Claremont participated in a district competition run by the Rovers of 6th Rondebosch. There were a total of 10 patrols entered (5 from Claremont and 5 from Rondebosch).

On the morning, all our scouts logged onto Discord and entered the team chats so that we could communicate. There were a total of 40 tasks that ranged from quizzes, to finding simple items around our houses, and then using them. The tasks were great for brushing up on scouting skills.

As a troop I think that we did very well — our top team placed 2nd. 2nd Rondebosch dominated most of the top spots. I think that the competition was very well organised and I think that everyone enjoyed it! Overall I had a lot of fun participating, thank you to the 6th Rondebosch Rovers for organising it.

Permanent link to this article: https://1stclaremont.org.za/1stclaremont-scouts/ss2020-e2-district-challenge/

Luke discusses online scouting

In accordance with with Covid 19 regulations, scouts have not been able to meet physically. This means that they have had to revert to online scouting. It is still a massive learning curve for everyone and there are a few difficulties that the scouts still have to figure out. Some of these difficulties include: connection problems, hearing problems, and sometimes a whole lot of people talking all at once. Another problem that is difficult is delegation as everyone may do the same activity when they could be doing different activities.

All in all, the scouts are finding online scouting meetings quite fun (depending on what is planned for the evening). If it follows a story line then it is more enjoyable than if we just have to do the same thing over and over again for the whole meeting. One of the most recent games that the scouts enjoyed a lot was ‘Crisis Command’.

Online scouting is a lot more different from normal scouting, in the sense that you’re just sitting in front of a screen instead of being active and playing games where you actually run around and use energy. Another big difference is that the scouts don’t really learn the things that they would if they were meeting physically, other than the online advancement evening which is great for the Travellers.

Permanent link to this article: https://1stclaremont.org.za/1stclaremont-scouts/ss2020-e2-luke-discuss-online-scouting/

Holly recounts the online Lockdown Trophy

The Lockdown Trophy competition was really fun! 

I liked how it was still in teams despite the difficulties during lockdown. I enjoyed designing the fortress on Lion’s Head with my team. I found the morse code activity quite difficult but enjoyed using Google maps to finish some of the tasks. I liked how well thought out the tasks were for the competition.

 I think it taught us to always optimise the time we had to do the tasks. I also think it also taught us to focus more on the tasks that had more points so we wouldn’t spend ages doing a task that had less points reward than others. 

I think the competition was well thought out and organised. There was always a leader to help you out when you needed it. I would like to thank all the people who were responsible for the making of the Lockdown Trophy competition — I really enjoyed it! 

Permanent link to this article: https://1stclaremont.org.za/1stclaremont-scouts/ss2020-e2-holly-online-with-the-lockdown-trophy/


In 1908 Baden-Powell founded scouts and based it on the principles stated in the Scout Promise and the Scout Law. In the intervening 110 years or so the principles embodied in the Promise and Law have remained constant, even if the wording has changed somewhat. 1st Claremont has seen the Spanish Flu, two World Wars, the Great Depression, the era and end of apartheid, and now we are faced with Covid 19.

While these events are significant, we should not forget the more long lasting, subtle and pervasive aspects of life – like gender based violence, racism, slavery, child trafficking, drug trafficking and police brutality. Issues such as these are pervasive around the world and affect lives just as much as major events like war or pandemics.

When Baden-Powell wrote the Scout Law, he said that he had created 10 rules that if implemented would bring peace to the world. More than 110 years later, we still use the Scout Law as guidance for our scouts to realise the vision of Baden-Powell for a better world. That the world we are trying to make better is very different to that which Baden-Powell lived in, or that Baden-Powell himself was not a man without flaws, does not change the effect that the Scout Law can have as a force for better in the world.

The Scout Law does not stop and start at the doors of the scout hall or when we put on a scout uniform. It is not a set of principles to be put aside when inconvenient. The Scout Law is for life and the scouters, in accordance with the Promise, do their best to live by the Scout Law and be living role models for our scouts. We cite the Scout Law when a scout is invested and we cite the Scout Law when a scout is awarded Springbok to remind them that the Scout Law is not just until you turn 18 – it is for your life, even if you are no longer a scout.

In all the activities that scouts offers and the marvellous experiences that scouts can have, we should not lose sight of the fundamental aim of scouts – to produce better citizens – and the role the Scout Law plays in achieving this aim. Without the Scout Law, the world would be a sorrier place and scouts would be a poorer movement spiritually. When we are faced with hard times such as Covid 19 which disrupt our world we should remember Scout Law 8 and when we see injustice we should remember Scout Laws 3 and 4. Were everyone do their best to apply the Scout Law, Lord Baden-Powell’s vision of a better world would come to pass.

Permanent link to this article: https://1stclaremont.org.za/1stclaremont-scouts/ss2020-e2-reflections/

Cubs at home

Towards the end of the first term, as Covid 19 was just entering our consciousness, we had talked about the disease with the cubs, taught them how to wash their hands, and were handing out badges with salutes but no handshakes. As term ended in early March, we had no idea of the coming lockdown which would mean cubs could not meet in person for the whole of term two, and probably longer.

In late April, a month into lockdown and with no signs of schools or scouting reopening, we decided to run online activities for the cubs. But how to do that? Freedom Day on the 27th April offered a fun way to start, and we sent out a short video greeting to all the cubs and asked them to colour in a South African flag, build a furniture-mountain, and share an intrepid photo of themselves on top of the mountain. The cubs loved it and you can see the results here. The same weekend, we encouraged cubs to take nature photos in their own gardens as part of the City Nature Challenge, which was also very popular, with the majority of cubs taking part.

At the same time, we welcomed five new cubs from our waiting list. We have chatted to the new cubs online, and they have shared photos as they took part in the Pack’s activities from home. We haven’t yet decided whether to invest them as cubs online, or wait until we can have a normal ceremony at the hall.

Another popular activity was a “Camp at home” with cubs encouraged to spend the night in a tent or blanket fort, make a meal, and a craft as a gift for Mother’s Day.

Baloo has also introduced the pack to the Discord platform which allows us to meet online for cub activities. This started with an online Sixer’s Council and smaller meetings for each of the Sixes, and then one of the highlights of the term: an online meeting where we watched the documentary, Eye of the Pangolin, followed by online questions and answers with the film maker, Bruce Young.

The cub programme offers a lot of activities that can be done at home, and many of the cubs have used the lockdown to earn interest badges (more than 30 badges so far!) and to work on their Cub advancement badges. This term, Tristan and Julia have completed their Leaping Wolf badge , the final badge a cub can earn before turning 11 and going up to scouts. Julia did a project on Cyberbullying as part of her badge. Juliet and Annabelle completed their Leaping Wolf badge last term just before lockdown started, and there are at least 4 more Leaping Wolf badges in progress at the moment.

Finally, a special congratulations to Olivia who organised a fantastic Blessings Bags project to support homeless people in the Southern Suburbs.

Permanent link to this article: https://1stclaremont.org.za/1stclaremont-scouts/ss2020-e2-cubs-at-home/

Cub Freedom Day Mountaineering

Normally if we said the cubs were going to wave the South African flag on top of a mountain on Freedom Day, we would pack a backpack, put on our boots, and climb a mountain to do it. This year, because of lockdown, we asked the cubs to build their own furniture mountains at home and share a photos of them at the summit. These are the results!

Permanent link to this article: https://1stclaremont.org.za/1stclaremont-scouts/ss2020-e2-cub-freedom-day-mountaineering/

Senior Cub Adventure Camp

Once a year, Western Cape runs a camp for 10 year old cubs in their final year before going up to scouts. The camp theme is based on the “Survivor” reality show and it takes place at the Hawequas scout campsite. In March this year 72 cubs took part, with ten cubs from 1st Claremont there, and Akela (Ian), Baloo (Fraser) and Mang (Elton) helping on camp staff this year. Camp Chief “Kepala” (Simon Grantham) is a former 1st Claremont scout.

For many cubs this was their last “normal” activity before national Covid 19 restrictions, which were declared only hours after the camp finished.

Permanent link to this article: https://1stclaremont.org.za/1stclaremont-scouts/ss2020-e2-senior-cub-adventure-camp-2/