Windhoek — The Scouts of Namibia organisation has been recognised for achieving 100 years of scouting in the country, from 1917 to 2017. The recognition was bestowed on Namibia during the 41st World Scout Conference and 13th World Scout Youth Forum that took place in Baku, Azerbaijan, in August.
Representatives of Scouts of Namibia were among the 1,500 delegates from 157 countries who attended the two events. The events are held every three years under the auspices of the World Organization of the Scout Movement (WOSM) to update member scout associations on the developments, plans and expansion of the global scouting movement.
Scouts of Namibia also bestowed honorary membership on Dr Henry Chan in recognition of his service as the honorary consul of Namibia in Hong Kong. The 57-year-old Chan, a businessman based in Hong Kong, has been serving Namibia's interests in Hong Kong since Namibia's independence. He was recognized for his continued association with Namibian scouting as well as his ongoing involvement with the World Scout Foundation to help support the growth and development of scouting worldwide.
Meanwhile, the 77-year-old Winston Adams from South Africa received a bronze Wolf Award for outstanding service by an individual. Adams, a retired scouting executive, is a very well known figure in southern African scouting circles. He helped Namibia set up the national office for Scouts of Namibia just after independence.
Adams noted that it was a challenge when he was asked by the secretary-general of WOSM to help Namibia set up their national scout office in Windhoek.
"It was shortly after they became independent in 1990 and there was still a lot going on. It was very difficult but in the end we overcame the hardships and Namibia now has an active scouting organisation," he said. Adams is the sixth South African scouting member to receive this prestigious award since the inception of the WOSM in June 1934.
Since the award's creation in 1935 fewer than 400 of the several million scouts throughout the world have received it.
The Scouts of Namibia as the national scouting organization has served 2,845 scouts as of 2011.
Scouting was founded in Namibia when it was called South West Africa in 1917 and until 1990 scouting was serviced by the South West Africa Division of the body. Namibia became a member of the WOSM in 1990.