THIRTY-SIX Oxfordshire Scouts have been picked to take part in the adventure of a lifetime.
They will jet to Japan for the 23rd World Scout Jamboree in 2015.
The Oxford unit, aged 14 to 17, will join 2,400 other UK scouts for the event.
They won their places at a rigorous selection event of team activities and creativity tests held at county Scout headquarters at Youlbury Scout campsite in Boars Hill, Oxford.
Now groups need to raise £3,000 for each Scout taking part in the jamboree.
Fifteen-year-old Morgan Barnden, from Bodicote, near Banbury, a Warwick School pupil who is a Scout with the Kingsfield Explorer Scout Unit and young leader with Bodicote Beavers, said: “I’m most looking forward to being surrounded by 30,000 other Scouts from every religious, ethnic and cultural group.
“The atmosphere of such a diverse event will be truly amazing.
“We are at the beginning of a very long and exciting journey – we are going to have a lot of fun and create some very special memories with each other over the next two years.
“The furthest I’ve travelled before is to New York, so Japan and its culture will be like a completely different planet to me.
“We will be so busy with activities and meeting new people in the two weeks, that I don’t think I will have time to even think about home.
“I am nervous, though, about eating food that is so different from my usual diet, but I’m sure I will master chopsticks by the time we get there.”
Among the fundraising activities planned is a supermarket bag pack, selling “funky unit badges”, a quiz night and sponsored walks.
Kayleigh De Lange, 16, from Launton, near Bicester, is a member of the Felix Explorer Scout Unit, based at the 37th Oxford Scout Group, in Cowley, who said she was looking forward to the experience She said: “I can’t imagine how massive this is going to be, and I can’t wait to be a part of it.
“It feels amazing to have been selected, as it’s a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity and I’m so excited to be one of the 36 Scouts going from Oxfordshire.”
Scouts will travel to Tokyo for four days’ sightseeing before heading to Kirara-hama, in Yamaguchi City, where the purpose-built Jamboree site is located.
From July 28, 2015, for 10 days, 30,000 Scouts from around the world will camp, live and work together in a celebration of international friendship.
They will find out about each country’s cultures and faiths, learn new skills, take part in adventurous activities and discuss some of the biggest issues facing the world.
During the trip, Scouts from every county in the world will gather at the Peace Dome in Hiroshima to mark the 70th anniversary of the dropping of the nuclear bomb on the city.