Frustrated World Scout Jamboree to get some K-pop ‘concert therapy’ in South Korea

Scouts prepare to leave the campsite of the World Scout Jamboree in Buan, North Jeolla province on August 8, 2023. — AFP

After so much suffering and a poor management system leading to the frustration of foreign scouts, officials in South Korea have decided to cheer the participants of the World Scout Jamboree by arranging a concert on Friday featuring the country’s famous Korean music.

The mismanagement of sanitation, among other concerns, prompted contingents from the US and Britain to leave early, culminating in a full evacuation due to an impending tropical storm after the government issued a high alert.

In a notable display of commitment, Culture Ministry spokesperson Kang Jeong-won emphasised the focus on sanitation measures during a briefing. 

“Our dedication to providing a pleasant stadium experience for scouts is unwavering,” Kang stated. 

Days earlier, hundreds of scouts fell ill due to extreme heat in the country, with concerns sparked about how the management was running the World Scout Jamboree.

K-pop boy group NCT Dream performs during the concert SMTOWN LIVE 2022 in Suwon, South Korea, August 20, 2022. — Reuters
K-pop boy group NCT Dream performs during the concert “SMTOWN LIVE 2022” in Suwon, South Korea, August 20, 2022. — Reuters

The World Scout Jamboree event was held in Saemangeum on the west coast of South Korea in which around 40,000 teens participated.

In this event, outdoor activities were planned to be conducted including cultural performances, and sustainability workshops among other things for those in their mid and high schools.

The authorities have taken decisive steps to address the situation, including the installation of 30 additional mobile restrooms to alleviate congestion and the deployment of over 200 sanitation personnel dedicated to restroom maintenance.

Senior Interior Ministry official Choi Hoon revealed plans to distribute approximately 90,000 water bottles to ensure the scouts’ well-being. 

Moreover, comprehensive safety measures have been put in place, with the deployment of police and firefighters at the Seoul World Cup Stadium during the concert.

Despite the challenges faced during the international jamboree, which brought together over 40,000 participants from across the globe, South Korea remains steadfast in its commitment to providing a memorable experience. 

As scout groups disperse to various locations across the country, some participants are even indulging in K-pop dance classes. 

The upcoming concert, featuring nearly 20 acclaimed acts including NewJeans and ITZY, aims to offer a vibrant and uplifting atmosphere for young scouts to cherish.

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