During the second weekend in September, and with a Fun in the Jungle theme, Woking Scouts held their 28th annual Handicamp at Woodlarks Campsite in Farnham. 47 Explorer scouts from the borough camped with thirty six children with special needs aged 10 to 16yrs old from Freemantles and The Park schools in Woking, Abbey school in Farnham, Kings College in Guildford and Portesbery school in Camberley and enjoyed a weekend of fun and challenges.
The young people were supported by over 80 leaders, including teachers from the various schools. The explorer scouts are buddied with the pupils from the local schools, on a one to one or two to one basis, and look after their buddies for the whole weekend, camping and enjoying the activities in patrols.
Over a chilly and damp weekend the young people camped in tents and the scouts aged 14 to 17yrs old were buddied and looked after the pupils for the whole weekend. With the theme for the weekend centred on the Jungle they all took part in new and challenging activities suchas climbing and abseiling, backwoods cooking over open fires, cooking and eating monkeysnacks, parrot fruit and jungle juice. They also tried their hand at kayaking and rafting on the River Wey, air rifle shooting, and constructing model aeroplanes in a camouflaged bunker.
The camp was visited by Animal Magic from Eastbourne, who brought along various exoticanimals such as Kinkajou, owls, meerkats and also Dennis the naughty baby racoon, whicheveryone at the camp were mesmerised with.
The huge three face climbing and abseiling wall was constructed by Harsco Infrastructure with HSS Southern in Old Woking supplying some of the safety fencing.
The 28th year of Handicamp was funded by the Chobham-based Children with Special Needs Foundation and the Surrey Army Cadet Force, Woking Borough Council and also received donations from Roberts Butchers in St Johns Tennakers Farm Shop in Chobham, Repropoint in Woking plus a large sum donated by staff from Mackrell Turner Garret solicitors, St Faiths in Dorking, Help Autistic Children, Cobalt Telephone, and a number of local lodges.
On a cold evening, after a succulent Hog roast dinner, Saturday ended with songs and laughter when the whole camp enjoyed a roaring and fabulous campfire led by Cub scout leader Neil Jones from Sheerwater accompanied by some of the Explorer Scouts.
During the weekend, Woking’s Mayor Cllr Anne Roberts visited the camp and experienced the thrill and enjoyment being had by everyone.