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‘Ambulances everywhere’

todayAugust 11, 2023 3

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‘Ambulances everywhere’

A UK Scout leader at the World Jamboree in South Korea has described conditions as “atrocious and unusable”.

More than 4,000 British attendees – many of them children – are being moved from a camp into hotels due to extreme temperatures hitting the country.

The contingent unit leader claimed there were “ambulances everywhere” – and the event’s infrastructure was ill-equipped to keep people safe in searing heat.

Scout water bottle

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Leaky water bottle given to Scouts by UK contingent

Speaking to Sky News journalist Kirsty Hickey, he said his group – which includes 30 children – had been given bad-quality, small water bottles.

“A third have broken and leak even though they tell us to drink a litre every hour,” he said. “Getting water is a 10-minute walk away in the heat.”

Is your child at the World Jamboree in South Korea? Contact Sky News on WhatsApp at 07583 000853 or email us at [email protected].

Toilet block

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Toilet block at Jamboree was described as ‘unusable’

The Scout leader, who did not wish to be named, also alleged toilet facilities were unclean, and there have been complaints the meals offered were not nutritionally balanced.

He revealed that they had to wait for over an hour in the heat for coaches to take them to Seoul – and claimed the emergency services needed to be called after some children passed out. However, the kids in his group are fine.

“The money hasn’t been worth it as we’re leaving and not getting the experience we paid for,” the Scout leader told us.

“The kids are upset that this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity has gone to waste because of lack of organisation and preparation.”

Police at Scout Jamboree

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Emergency services deployed to event

The contingent unit leader added that in comparison to the 2015 World Jamboree in Japan – which also suffered from stifling temperatures – appropriate infrastructure made the event bearable.

It comes after organisers and the South Korean government said water trucks, air-conditioned spaced and medics were being sent to the event.

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S Korea PM: Scout jamboree issues ‘improved’

Temperatures in some parts of the country have topped 38C (100.4F) this week, with at least 600 people at the event having been treated for heat-related ailments, according to officials.

The event in southwestern Buan has attracted around 40,000 participants from 155 countries, most of them aged between 14 and 18.

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Bear Grylls urges Scouts to stay hydrated

‘A complete mess’

Peter Naldrett, who has two children at the World Scout Jamboree, posted on X (formerly Twitter) to say that parents have been asked not to talk to the press.

He revealed that he had raised a total of £9,000 so his kids could attend the event.

Attendees of the World Scout Jamboree lie down. Pic: AP

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Pic: AP

“The South Koreans have made a complete mess of organising this. The government took over running the site and it’s still a mess,” Mr Naldrett wrote.

He praised UK contingent leaders for how they have handled the situation and tried to keep morale high.

“If moving all the scouts off site over 48 hours is honestly the best move for the event, then fair enough. But the kids are looking forward to trips out and the famous culture day,” Mr Naldrett added.

Attendees of the World Scout Jamboree cool off. Pic: AP

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Pic: AP

The father believes that children should be able to return to the site for key events – and called on corporate sponsors to make donations so their trip isn’t wasted.

Urging the government to help, he concluded by saying: “There needs to be a massive effort to save this experience and it should be a no expense spared job… I do want the 4,000 UK kids to experience the international mixing and activities they have been flown over there for.”

Written by: Newsroom

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