Keynote: Kenya Street Scouts

International Commissioner Tyler Arrell spoke about the Kenya Street Scouts

By Scouters Ted Claxton and Liam Morland, May 17, 2004

At the 2004 Scouts Canada, Central Division Conference, the keynote speaker was Tyler Arrell, Scouts Canada’s International Commissioner. Scouter Tyler began by speaking about international child poverty. Many young people around the world do not have access to basic needs or the education that will allow them to contribute to society when they are older. AIDS has created thousands of orphans, many of whom now live in the streets.

Scouter Tyler presented a short documentary film about a program for street children operated by the Kenya Scout Association. The Street Scouts program, supported by the UK Scout Association and others, is assisting approximately 1200 street children by helping them to avoid drug use; teaching them basic reading, writing, and arithmetic; and assisting with vocational skills. The Street Scout troop was connected to an existing troop operating from a school. Senior Scouts assisted the Street Scouts with lessons, providing meals, and water for washing up. The obvious pride of the street children when they received their uniform and became part of the troop was inspiring. Scouting provided children with positive role models and the skills they need to become productive members of society.

Scouter Tyler urged us to take action in support of this program by planting a tree. Scouter Tyler said that Scoutrees is different from Scouts Canada's other fundraisers in that National does not get any money from it. The proceeds are directed to the Scout Brotherhood Fund. This year, the money will support the Kenya Street Scouts.

Scouter Tyler mentioned other ways that Scouts can get involved internationally. Venturers and Rovers have organized community development projects in third world countries. The World Organization of the Scout Movement has recently created the Scouts of the World Award and the Gifts for Peace program. The 100th anniversary of Scouting will be celebrated at the 2007 World Scout Jamboree in the United Kingdom.

Scouter Tyler closed by asking us to keep in mind the world-wide aspects of Scouting.