On Sunday 3rd April, 20 Orphans and their 10 Carers will arrive at Kandersteg International Scout Centre (KISC). This is in addition to the families from Ukraine for whom the Scout Centre already provides accommodation.
The 20 Orphans, aged between 4 and 18, come from the Lviv area in Ukraine and were forced to leave their homeland due to the current war situation, seeking refuge first in Poland and now in Kandersteg. The orphanage in Lviv is run by the Ukrainian charity fund "Ridni".
Like many other organisations and individuals in Switzerland, KISC had offered indoor accommodation to the Cantonal authorities in Bern. KISC hosts thousands of Scouts from all over the world every year, and in view of the sad circumstances in Ukraine, KISC sees it as its duty to offer help. "Some Ukrainian families, their children and dogs have already been at the Scout Centre for a few weeks. There are Ukrainian-speaking staff and ex-staff available to help, and we have the space available. We didn't have to think twice about hosting the group; we're pleased to be able to help," says Jack Higgins, the KISC Director.
KISC is in a unique position to offer the help this group need. We can quickly mobilise everything necessary for the new guests.
As a host, KISC wants to ensure that the children have time to get used to their new situation. The group had to leave their home without knowing when they will be able to return, so KISC will do everything to make their stay as comfortable as possible.
KISC is the World Scout Centre of the World Organisation of the Scout Movement (WOSM). KISC is more than just a Scout Centre. We stand for international cooperation and demonstrate to the world what is possible when people from different backgrounds, cultures and nationalities come together. This is true for our Guests and Staff.
KISC hosts over 13'000 young Scouts from over 60 countries every year, generating around 75'000 overnight stays in the Bernese Oberland. The centre is run by a team of up to 100 volunteers from over 30 countries, managed by a small professional team led by the KISC director. All KISC volunteers and staff have been trained for their roles as staff; including child protection training.
KISC has already pledged the donations that will be generated by the BBQ this Summer to the World Organisation of Scouting Movement’s fundraising effort. All donations will support the response to the unfolding situation in Ukraine, where Scouts urgently need your support to coordinate the humanitarian relief efforts.
If you would like to make a donation directly to KISC to cover the costs of helping these guests, then you can do so through paypal.