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Thread: WSJ IST - Trying not to be cynical.

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    ESL and DESC ianw's Avatar
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    WSJ IST - Trying not to be cynical.

    Okay, this is going to be fuel to the fire for some of you I know, I almost hesitate to post this, it'll be scratching a scab.

    Got an email about them reopening IST positions for both WSJ and EuroJam

    Both require you to take nearly two weeks off work

    WSJ
    - you get UK contingent kit. Tent to kip in. Food. Local transfers.
    - they want you to pay £1500, or £1800 if you go to the UK contingent bash in Washington afterwards.
    - Flights to and from, I had a brief play with a cheap flights site, and you're looking at £900-£1000

    EuroJam
    - you get food. Local transfers. I guess this means you get to take your own tent.
    - okay, obviously, it's cheaper to get to Gdansk, Google says it's an 18 hour drive so you could road trip it, or there'll be cheap flights with your Irish fella, or similar. Maybe £200.
    - Cost is....£255

    Now, I know, WSJ will be an extraordinary thing, 165 countries, massive event, having been to a little one, I can see the appeal for sure. But..that £1500 (or £1800) seems....a lot. And I know the USA and Poland are very different but...£255 v £1500 different? And I know WSJ is all UK contingent this and branded goods that and a couple of UK contingent weekends, while EuroJam is a bit more...see you there don't forget your necker!

    It certainly means only a certain section of the population can even think about WSJ IST. Can I say Gap-year types without being pejorative? Probably not. I mean, as it goes, I probably could scrape the pennies, dip into savings, but I don't think I've got enough leave left from work plus family holiday. EuroJam is a bit more tempting right enough though.
    Last edited by ianw; 07-02-2019 at 09:47 AM.
    Ian Wilkins
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    Senior Member big chris's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ianw View Post
    Now, I know, WSJ will be an extraordinary thing, 165 countries, massive event, having been to a little one, I can see the appeal for sure. But..that £1500 (or £1800) seems....a lot. And I know the USA and Poland are very different but...£255 v £1500 different? And I know WSJ is all UK contingent this and branded goods that and a couple of UK contingent weekends, while EuroJam is a bit more...see you there don't forget your necker!
    I went to the Jamboree in 1995 and i helped at eurojam for a weekend in 2005 (?) and it was pretty much the same thing.

    Big stage, loud music, good fireworks, badge swapping, free hugs signs, lots of kids lying around in heaps with a guitar or two... Excited youngsters getting to try their english on the UK scouts... lots of very cool uniforms (the uk ones always look rubbish next to a dutch or various other ones, i reckon)... italian scouts singing in perfect unison... you know the drill.

    so, yup. agreed.

    oh, here are some pics we took: https://photos.app.goo.gl/Uc23NXEkSQYsXg9A8

    and yes. we had to shift that massive pile of woodchippings
    Last edited by big chris; 07-02-2019 at 10:13 AM.

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    Senior Member CambridgeSkip's Avatar
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    Similar comments to Chris.

    I went to Eurojam 2005 as a unit leader. I only went to 2007 jamboree as a day tripper. However the "feel" of the world jamboree was very similar to that of eurojam. Ok it was same site, format etc just bigger but nevertheless similar. Eurojam had also included quite a few non european contingents. I recall USA, S.Korea, Israel, Canada off the top of my head there were probably more.

    So in terms of the experience I suspect it will be similar this time round.

    The only comment I'd really add is that for world jamboree there are the poorer countries to consider. While Europe does have some poorer corners (I'm thinking Albania, Bosnia etc) none of them are on the same scale as, say, Sudan, Afghanistan, Syria and the like and so the element of richer countries needing to subsidise them will be that much larger for for a world jamboree compared to European.

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    Senior Member big chris's Avatar
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    i was curious and fair play... the pricing is significantly different for poorer countries.

    https://www.2019wsj.org/jamboree-fee/

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    I got an invite to present at the Navs Jamboree in Denver. I think they were being polite rather than serious, but had I taken up the offer our team would have had free hoho and transport for the duration. Just the £255 dollars to pay for the four days of the event. Flights put the kybosh on the idea at £2000 approx...

    International stuff doesn't come cheap. either as a participant or staff.
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    I always find it interesting how the cost of IST and similar adult volunteer roles compares with discussion on here and other places about how adult volunteers shouldn't be asked for pay anything for a weekend camp.

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    The unpaid help ASLChris's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pstretch View Post
    I always find it interesting how the cost of IST and similar adult volunteer roles compares with discussion on here and other places about how adult volunteers shouldn't be asked for pay anything for a weekend camp.
    TBH it's slightly different, but I feel the IST fee is way too considering they expect you to work when you're there!
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    Quote Originally Posted by ASLChris View Post
    TBH it's slightly different, but I feel the IST fee is way too considering they expect you to work when you're there!
    Isn't it just the opposite end of a spectrum? At what point on the spectrum does 'pay nothing' become 'pay lots'?

    Or are the IST so oversubscribed that charging lots helps manage demand?

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    Quote Originally Posted by pstretch View Post
    Isn't it just the opposite end of a spectrum? At what point on the spectrum does 'pay nothing' become 'pay lots'?

    Or are the IST so oversubscribed that charging lots helps manage demand?
    The fact that they've reopened applications suggests otherwise.

    And yeah, I'm in the "leaders shouldn't pay but..." camp. They don't normally pay on weekends, or summer camp, but when we went abroad, leaders paid for their flights, if they could, as otherwise it put the price of the whole thing for the kids well over the top (I mean, not school trip over the top, but still). There is no right and wrong as ever. I mean, I don't charge crew for Theme Park Camp, and they get fed really well, and those that want to get to go to Thorpe Park, on the other hand, the camp price for adult leaders from all the groups coming is full whack same as the kids. Double standards that's me.
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    Quote Originally Posted by ianw View Post
    Okay, this is going to be fuel to the fire for some of you I know, I almost hesitate to post this, it'll be scratching a scab.

    Got an email about them reopening IST positions for both WSJ and EuroJam

    Both require you to take nearly two weeks off work

    WSJ
    - you get UK contingent kit. Tent to kip in. Food. Local transfers.
    - they want you to pay £1500, or £1800 if you go to the UK contingent bash in Washington afterwards.
    - Flights to and from, I had a brief play with a cheap flights site, and you're looking at £900-£1000

    EuroJam
    - you get food. Local transfers. I guess this means you get to take your own tent.
    - okay, obviously, it's cheaper to get to Gdansk, Google says it's an 18 hour drive so you could road trip it, or there'll be cheap flights with your Irish fella, or similar. Maybe £200.
    - Cost is....£255

    Now, I know, WSJ will be an extraordinary thing, 165 countries, massive event, having been to a little one, I can see the appeal for sure. But..that £1500 (or £1800) seems....a lot. And I know the USA and Poland are very different but...£255 v £1500 different? And I know WSJ is all UK contingent this and branded goods that and a couple of UK contingent weekends, while EuroJam is a bit more...see you there don't forget your necker!

    It certainly means only a certain section of the population can even think about WSJ IST. Can I say Gap-year types without being pejorative? Probably not. I mean, as it goes, I probably could scrape the pennies, dip into savings, but I don't think I've got enough leave left from work plus family holiday. EuroJam is a bit more tempting right enough though.
    I attended Eurojam 2005 and WSJ 2007 as IST both at Chelmsford, both were amazing and unforgettable.

    Yes it was a lot of work, yes you have to pay and you are subsidising the poorer countries, yes you either have to save or try and link in with local fundraising, but it was worth it all.

    I wouldnt change the experience for the world.

    Would I go again? Yes if I was younger.................

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    The unpaid help ASLChris's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by pstretch View Post
    Isn't it just the opposite end of a spectrum? At what point on the spectrum does 'pay nothing' become 'pay lots'?

    Or are the IST so oversubscribed that charging lots helps manage demand?
    I think when the costs are high (ie going somewhere abroad or involves lots of activities that they get to do), adults should contribute so the cost is affordable for the YP. However, it should be reasonable since the adults are there to volunteer and support the YP, and likely spend their own money on other things for scouting such as activities without claiming expenses.

    Since they've re-opened applications, I guess they can't be that oversubscribed...
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    Quote Originally Posted by ianw View Post
    The fact that they've reopened applications suggests otherwise.
    Quote Originally Posted by ASLChris View Post
    Since they've re-opened applications, I guess they can't be that oversubscribed...
    Clearly. Maybe they've over done the supply vs demand thing given the UK's current financial circumstances.

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    Senior Member Kastor's Avatar
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    I would think they are charging too much for IST.

    The IST price is only 8% less that the YP price. So you are paying almost as much, can't do the activities, and have to work. Not the best offer I'm afraid.
    To get more kids we need more adults - are we getting the message yet?

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    Quote Originally Posted by ASLChris View Post
    TBH it's slightly different, but I feel the IST fee is way too considering they expect you to work when you're there!
    I do agree. I have never been, but I know people who have. Some loved it, one or two found it boring and too serf like to be anywhere near worth the money. The most interesting was a small group from my last district who had an emperors new clothes moment a few years after the Korean jamboree, where they'd gone, came back, had claimed to love any minute and then on comparing notes found that actually they'd all found it not that great or enjoyable and very much resented the price.

    I've written before about the Scouts who've been to WSJ in Swedend and Japan who were very unimpressed, in one case seriously trying to get some of his hard earned money back (for Sweden 6 of the 11 we sent said they rather not have gone, and a couple very much more enjoyed their troop camps to K'steg more).

    So, I'm not a fan of WSJ at all.

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    Quote Originally Posted by RisingStar View Post
    I've written before about the Scouts who've been to WSJ in Sweden and Japan who were very unimpressed, in one case seriously trying to get some of his hard earned money back (for Sweden 6 of the 11 we sent said they rather not have gone, and a couple very much more enjoyed their troop camps to K'steg more).

    So, I'm not a fan of WSJ at all.
    Whereas one of our Explorers (at the time) went to Sweden and absolutely loved the experience especially the Home Hospitality and I think he is still in touch with some of the people he met there and one of our current AESLs went to Japan and evidently really enjoyed it and says he would have loved to have gone to USA as IST.

    I do agree the cost is high for both participants and IST but I certainly think its a worthwhile expereince so long as participants understand what they are and are not going to get out of it (meeting Scouts from across the world not necessarily big ticket adventurous activities)

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