The World JOTA-JOTI Team met at the World Scout Bureau in Kuala Lumpur early February for our annual meeting. The team is led by Richard Middelkoop, PA3BAR, from the Netherlands. Team members include: Hannu “Banda” Rättö, OH7GIG, from Finland; Ali Al-Mamari, A41RV, from Oman; Philip Bird from the United Kingdom; and Jim Wilson, K5ND, from the USA. Also attending this year’s meeting were Peter Blatch, World Scout Committee liaison for JOTA-JOTI and Stephen Peck, World Scout Bureau Director of World Events.
The team spent one day evaluation the event, finishing the annual report of 2017 and arranging some practical details for 2018. As part of the implementation of the WOSM Triennial Plan 2017-2020, the following two days, a workshop was held to explore future directions of the JOTA-JOTI event and activities. Members of the current JOTA-JOTI team met with an invited group of eight representatives of National Scout Organisations, who joined with staff from the World Scout Bureau and the liaison person from the World Scout Committee to suggest future directions for the annual JOTA-JOTI activity.
An inspiring two-day session followed with an in-depth look at the event, its relevance for World Scouting and ways to raise it to the next level in the near future. Building onto our strategy paper produced last year with the main themes “promote and encourage”,” changing the profile, and “innovative educational methods”.
The workshop suggested avenues to support greater involvement of young people in the JOTA-JOTI weekend, to achieve a target of 3 million registered attendees involved by 2021 and available to as many young people as possible throughout the world.
A suggested Action Plan was developed. Specific areas proposed include a realignment of the JOTA-JOTI brand; enhance the educational framework of the activity including using theme driven, relevant educational activities each year linked to external specialist partners; having one centralised platform for JOTA-JOTI activities inside the scout.org ecosystem; encouraging group and individual registrations using a simplified process; building more effective ‘safe from harm’ mechanisms throughout the entire process; greater feedback processes; collecting data to validate the event; creating increased partnerships with external NGOs and corporate supporters; having ambassadors in regions and NSOs to promote and support implementation to achieve targets; and linking the event to other major global events where possible such as World Jamborees.
For the short term, the first results will become visible soon: the 2018 sign-up system will be simplified, possibly including a smartphone App, the role of National JOTA-JOTI Coordinator will be transformed into a JOTA-JOTI Ambassador position and several event promotion actions will follow. The World JOTA-JOTI Team will skip the annual logo competition this year to free resources for the other activities. (not to worry, the 2018 JOTA-JOTI will have a theme and logo, which will be announced soon).