Since 1958, Scouts from around the world have connected each year through the use of amateur radio. Each October, Scouts from 150 different countries take to the air waves to join in a virtual World Jamboree and connect with others Scouts around the globe.
Soon after the creation of the Internet, Jamboree-On-The-Air spilled over into the World Wide Web. Scouts began using chat rooms and bulletin boards to exchange ideas and learn about how Scouting thrives around the world.
Now, fifty-eight years later, the fun continues. This October will be the 59th JOTA and 19th JOTI and the theme is — “Discover Our World”
Join the fun this by involving your pack, troop, team, post, ship or crew in the 2016 Jamboree-on-the-Air and Jamboree-on-the-Internet — held concurrently Oct. 14 to 16, 2016.
To participate, most units visit an amateur radio operators ham shack or ask the radio operator to set up at a local park.
In our local area, Firestone Scout Reservation has been holding a JOTA event at the camp’s trading post area. Look for more information on the camps JOTA Facebook page when it becomes available.
The smaller Jamboree-on-the-Internet requires less setup. Scouts or Venturers do not necessarily need to participate as a unit. All they need is use any internet-enabled device — computer, laptop, tablet or smartphone — to talk to Scouts from far-off places.
In addition to being incredibly fun, JOTA and JOTI count toward Scouting requirements:
- For Tigers, this meets requirements for the elective adventure Family Stories.
- For Webelos, it counts toward the Arrow of Light Adventure Building a Better World.
- Boy Scouts can check off a requirement for the Citizenship in the World merit badge.
- All Cub Scouts, Boy Scouts, Varsity Scouts, Venturers and adult leaders can count the event toward the requirements for the International Spirit Award.