“It turns out that Jayapura is beautiful and comfortable. It’s nothing like what I imagined before I come here,” girl scout Sri Lestari of North Maluku said upon her arrival at the Cenderawasih campground in Waena, Jayapura, Papua, on Thursday.
Sri, one of the participants of the Indonesian Scouts Movement’s Raimuna X national camping event in Waena from Oct. 8-15, said that prior to her arrival in Jayapura, she heard a number of negative things about the province of Papua.
She said she was told that Jayapura was not safe and frequently marred with rapes, kidnappings and riots, and leaving home, these worries still weighed on her mind. Yet, her impression changed as she met other fellow scouts from Papua on board the passenger ship KM Doloronda that took her to Jayapura. “They are friendly and quick to make friends,” Sri said.
Boy scout Misbakul Aulat of North Halmahera regency shared the same experience. “We were welcomed very warmly. It was completely different from the incidents we often see in the media,” he said.
Abdul Latief, a scout supervisor from Central Sulawesi said, “In fact, we don’t have such worries anymore after we moored at Jayapura Port.”
Unlike previous years, the participants in this year’s event do not need to erect tents as the organizing committee prepared uniquely designed huts whose walls and roofs were made of woven palm leaves, locally known as nipah.
Water containers have also been prepared at the campsite to allow the participants to conduct their activities during the event.
Some 4,000 scouts from across the country are attending the event that was officially opened by Vice President Boediono.
Source: The Jakarta Post