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Testimony of a Polish team leader

"I feel like I’m just starting to discover the role of scouting and faith not only in this particular service, but in my whole life."

Gosia, 20 years old, Warsaw, 10 years in scouting, team leader for 2 years now

1) What exactly is your service?

Together with few people I’m coordinating the logistics of the actions that take place in Warsaw and nearby towns and villages. We’re getting e-mails and calls from city hall, other NGOs and scout organizations as well as private people that need help with various stuff associated with the presence of refugees in our country. My role is basically to find people that would do the job that we, as an organization [Scouts of Europe] are asked to do. Yesterday for instance (it was Thursday), we had an emergency on town’s stadium which was transformed into temporary shelter for the Ukrainians. The service there involves a constant presence of 5 to 8 people that would take care of people sleeping there and manage the situation. Last night, at about 8 pm we got the message that there’s no one there to help. We have this Facebook group on which we post the new initiatives that require volunteers’ work. So imagine that lately in the evening after the post came up, in about 20 minutes enough people commented that they can be there in 30 minutes or so (bare in mind that many of those people live in the suburbs). Between 9pm and 3 in the morning there were about 15 scouts, who helped there manage the situation. I was truly moved to see in the same time so much suffer caused by a pure evil and the same amount of selflessness and love to other human beings.

2) What motivated you to do this service?

I know that each person deal with this mess in his or hers own way, but personally I could not live with this consciousness that people just like me, living next door are being slaughtered, raped and slaved while I’m doing nothing to change this, even by such small things like helping those who got out of this hell. Also, apart from most obvious reasons being that I want to help people that are in suffer and I would like the others to do the same for me and my family if we would find ourselves in danger, I feel like leadership and multi-tasking are kind of my things, so in this whole horrible situation I can also find a way for self-development.

3) What role has scouting and faith for you in this service?

I feel like I’m just starting to discover the role of scouting and faith not only in this particular service, but in my whole life. Previously, I’ve never thought that being a scout is even a small part of my human identity. Now I feel that not being a scout would mean not being the same person I am today. As to faith, I feel like that this particular service involves its huge amounts - you have to have faith that God can fix what we broke, that it will all end someday and that you could go back someday to this prosaic problems you would have as a teenager in normal times.

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