Presidential Secretariat of Sri Lanka

President joins Scouts International Cultural Jamboree…

The International Cultural Jamboree organized by the Sri Lanka Scout Association was graced by President Gotabaya Rajapaksa on Friday virtually.

Due to the prevailing COVID-19 situation, for the first time in World Scouting history, the Sri Lanka Scout Association has made arrangements to conduct a Virtual Global Cultural Jamboree from July 16-18, 2021 with the participation of more than 100 National Scout Organizations and over 20,000 Scouts.

The Global Cultural Jamboree which was organized under the theme of “Culturally One Scout World” has made arrangements to showcase a wide range of diverse global cultural programmes for the benefit of Scout members, who are confined to homes due to the prevalent pandemic situation.

“In addition to today’s problems such as conflicts and the pandemic, issues such as the loss of biodiversity, environmental degradation, food security, access to water, and climate change are challenges that will need to be overcome in the future”, the President said and added that the World Organization of the Scout Movement and similar entities must equip young people with the skills they need to face these future challenges with confidence.

“I commend the Sri Lanka Scout Association for taking this initiative in light of a global pandemic that has forced us to change the way we live. In that context, this initiative symbolizes the great value of the simple but the deeply profound motto of the Scout movement: ‘Be Prepared”, President Rajapaksa further said.

The President and Chief Scout of Sri Lanka Gotabaya Rajapaksa made these remarks addressing the Opening Ceremony of this virtual Global Cultural Jamboree, at the Presidential Secretariat, yesterday (16).

“This forum will enable participants to learn more about the issues and opportunities that exist in various regions of the world. It could also help lay the foundations of future global action regarding them,” the President said.

“I hope that during the course of these three days, all participants will make full use of this forum to learn about the different cultures and traditions that comprise and shape our world, as well as about and from each other.

I hope that the bridges they build and the connections they make will stand them in good stead for the future as truly global citizens,” President Rajapaksa added.

For the first time in World Scouting history, more than 20,000 Scouts and Scout Leaders have registered for the Virtual Global Cultural Jamboree, said Scout Attorney Janaprith Fernando, a Member of the World Scout Committee and the Deputy Chief Commissioner of the Sri Lanka Scout Association.

The Chairperson of the World Scout Committee Craig Turpie was the Special Guest at the event, which was attended by the Heads of the World Scout Association, global leaders including scout commissioners from other countries. 

Full text of the speech by His Excellency the President Gotabaya Rajapaksa at the Global Cultural Jamboree of the Sri Lanka Scout Association

  • Chairman of the World Scout Committee
  • Chairman of the Asia Pacific Regional Scout Committee
  • Regional Directors of the World Organisation of the Scout Movement
  • Chief Commissioners, International Commissioners and Key Leaders from around the world
  • Chief Commissioner of the Sri Lanka Scout Association, Maj. Gen. Milinda Pieris
  • Jamboree Organising Teams
  • Scouts from around the world

It gives me great pleasure to address you at the Opening Ceremony of this virtual Global Cultural Jamboree organised by the Sri Lanka Scout Association.

I am happy to learn that this event is one of the first of its kind.

I commend the Sri Lanka Scout Association for taking this initiative in light of a global pandemic that has forced us to change the way we live.

In context, this initiative symbolises the great value of the simple but deeply profound motto of the Scout movement: ‘Be Prepared’.

Since its establishment more than a hundred years ago, the World Scout Movement has helped millions of young people develop vital skills such as leadership, teamwork, resourcefulness, and the ability to overcome various challenges.

Such skills become more and more important as the world we live in becomes more and more complex.

The challenges that the future will bring may be more difficult to overcome than those of the past.

In addition to today’s problems such as conflicts and the pandemic, issues such as the loss of biodiversity, environmental degradation, food security, access to water, and climate change, are challenges that will need to be overcome in the future.

The World Organisation of the Scout Movement and similar entities must equip young people with the skills they need to face these future challenges with confidence.

They must encourage the youth to think globally and prepare them to take global action on these issues.

In this context, the coming together of fifteen thousand Scouts from over one hundred countries through this Global Cultural Jamboree is praiseworthy indeed.

By showcasing many and diverse global cultures, reflected in various national languages, dresses, foods, artforms, and histories, it will use technology to bridge vast geographic and cultural distances.

It will enable participants to learn more about the issues and opportunities that exist in various regions of the world.

It could also help lay the foundations of future global action regarding them.

I hope that during the course of these three days, all participants will make full use of this forum provides to learn about the different cultures and traditions that comprise and shape our world, as well as about and from each other.

I hope that the bridges they build and the connections they make will stand them in good stead for the future as truly global citizens.

As the Chief Scout of Sri Lanka, I therefore take great pleasure and pride in hereby declaring open this virtual Global Cultural Jamboree, “Culturally One Scout World”.