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News from CNREURAFCENT

Sigonella Scouts Join Camp Avantura in Croatia

19 August 2022

From Mass Communication Specialist 1st Class Josh Cote, Naval Air Station Sigonella Public Affairs

Because of COVID-19 and PCS season at Naval Air Station Sigonella, the Boy Scout troop numbers here began to decline, but recently Troop 53 has been getting back into the swing of things. This year, for the first time since COVID, Troop 53 was able to attend Camp Avantura, a water-based camp held in Savudrija, Croatia at Autokamp Veli Joze on the
Because of COVID-19 and PCS season at Naval Air Station Sigonella, the Boy Scout troop numbers here began to decline, but recently Troop 53 has been getting back into the swing of things. This year, for the first time since COVID, Troop 53 was able to attend Camp Avantura, a water-based camp held in Savudrija, Croatia at Autokamp Veli Joze on the Adriatic Sea.

The camp consisted of 130 scouts from across the Transatlantic Council Scouting Region. Troop 53 sent seven out of their 10 Scouts along with three of their leaders to the week-long camp from July 31 until Aug. 6.

Luckily for those who remained, there were still parents willing to step up and build the troop back.

“When we moved here after the first year, all of the leadership moved on to other commands,” said Melissa Bribiesca, troop committee chair. “In order to keep the troop running, myself and another mom had to step in and sort of take on every role there is in leadership. We were down to two Scouts and we had to rebuild the troop and the leadership roles. Now we have grown the troop back to 10 Scouts plus two female Scouts in the girls troop.”

Joining the Scouts not only gives kids and teens new skills in life but it also can be a way to get out there and have some fun.

“I joined because a bunch of my friends were in Scouts and they said it was really fun,” said Eric Bribiesca, Troop 53 Boy Scout. “I decided to try it out and it is pretty fun. We get to sell popcorn and learn knot tying and whittling and a bunch of other stuff like camping.”

While at the camp in Croatia, the Scouts earned a multitude of different merit badges like first-aid, woodcarving, fishing, archery, rifle shooting, kayaking, canoeing, small-boat sailing, swimming, water sports and Accelerated Camper Experience Program. Along with working on their badges, the troop also got to participate in campfire songs and skits, flag ceremony participation, open swim, snorkeling and different hikes to nearby villages.

Sometime soon, the troop plans on doing a Scout-a-thon fundraiser to help raise money to help offset some of the costs for the troop’s future camps. The more money the troop is able to raise, the less money would have to come out of pocket for the upcoming trips.

While at the camp, the Acting-Scoutmaster and the Assistant Scoutmaster, who are both active duty service members, were able to participate in the Introduction to Outdoor Leader Skills. This class is a required outdoor training for all Scoutmasters and Assistant Scoutmasters. The hands-on course provides adult leaders with the practical outdoors skills needed to lead Scouts in the outdoors.

“IOLS is an introduction to outdoors leadership skills,” said Electronics Technician 3rd Class Max Begin, Assistant Scoutmaster. “It teaches the basics of knot tying, fire building, leave-no-trace principles and more. For me it very much was a refresher training, I had maybe a one year gap between getting my Eagle Scout and having to do this course which is everything I was doing already as a Scout. For people new to Scouts, it’s to help them learn everything the need.”

For anyone looking to join or for more information on the scouts, the Troop 53 has a Facebook page. You can also go onto Scouts.org and look for the troop to get involved.
 
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