Fueled by action and high-adventure activities, in 2013, the national Scout jamboree is extending its invitation to include another program within the Boy Scouts of America, Venturing.
With some of the best whitewater rafting, mountain biking, and hiking in the world all in one location at the BSA’s new site, the Summit Bechtel Reserve, an invitation to attend is extended to ALL aspects of the Venturing program, which means that females are welcome to join in as well.
Although females have been involved with the BSA for over 40 years (since 1969), Venturing has only existed since the 1990s. And even though girls have been participants in the Venturing program since its conception, this is the first year that girls, and Venturers, will be attending the jamboree.
“For the female Venturers, I think it is a tremendous step for them to finally be allowed to come to the jamboree as participants,” said Dustin M. Readenour, national Venturing president. “Many of the females are beyond excited for the opportunity to the be a participant at the 2013 Jamboree. They understand that this first jamboree at the Summit — the now permanent site of the national jamboree — will be one to never forget, and with that, they are jumping at every opportunity to attend the national jamboree.”
What is Venturing?
The fastest growing program in the BSA, Venturing is designed to reach as many young adults — male and female — as possible, instead of just reaching out to a targeted group. While working to shape its members into well-rounded and responsible individuals and leaders, the program uses a theme of high adventure to create a learning environment based on individual preferences, making it a great addition to the Summit.
“I cannot [place a value on the] countless lessons and opportunities that Venturing has brought to me.” – Readenour
“I became involved in Venturing in the fall of 2008,” says Readenour. Explaining that it fulfilled a desire for activity, leadership and diversity, he also noted other life skills he learned in the program, such as “communication skills, time management, planning, and setting achievable goals.”
The upcoming 2013 National Jamboree at the Summit will feature activities never seen at jamborees in the past: whitewater rafting, zip-lining, mountain biking, skateboarding, and a more involved BMX facility. Activities that are not often incorporated into Scouting events, those adventures are used by Venturing crews across the country as learning opportunities and a chance to work on their leadership skills.
“Venturing teaches and instills its lessons, along with leadership skills, just simply by being a member of the program … everyone [helps] plan and lead the activity,” says Readenour. “Over time, the lessons and values of Venturing and Scouting can be seen. These are lessons and values that will effect and guide their lives for years to come.”
As the Summit begins to grow, the BSA is making sure each of its members in the Scouting and Venturing world feels welcome to attend. To do this, the site is being constructed so every participant’s privacy is respected. This includes different sleeping quarters and bathhouses that are located in separate areas. The goal is to make sure EVERYONE stays safe and has a blast.
“One of the key focuses behind the Venturing program is high adventure, and with the addition of the Summit — the home of high adventure — this is a perfect breeding ground for the foundations of Venturing,” Readenour concludes. “That being said, I think that Venturers at the jamboree will add a dynamic that will never be forgotten.”