Scouting is for all, those three crucial words are what these Boy Scouts are standing by. “Boy Scouts of America, as part of the 2017 Jamboree and what they call their, “Day of Service”, they are helping the National Park Service open accessible picnic area, fishing area, which they did last year. Now, they are finishing that and making the restrooms handicap accessible” said, Lizzie Watts, Superintendent of New River Gorge, National River, Gauley River National Recreation Area and Bluestone National Scenic River.
The Boy Scouts of America have 2.4 million scouts across the nation. Thirty percent of those scouts have some form of special need or disability, and now troops are making sure everyone has an equal opportunity. Jamboree Program Vice Chairman, Jeff Jonasen told us, “This is an opportunity for them to work firsthand on making something accessible to people who should be able to enjoy it. So, adding another landing here at the river, a river that most of these guys had a chance to go rafting down, it connects with what their doing here at the Jamboree, in a particularly good way.” Troop 116 Boy Scout Luke O’Connell of Massachusetts added, “Part of the core principles of the Boy Scouts is helping others and being a good person and I think this really helps with that.”
With just the simple grip of a shovel, hard work and determination, these troops will soon make a difference in someone’s life. And for one boy scout they already have. “They help me and thank you” said, Boy Scout Joseph Powell of Virginia.
The New River Gorge National River will now have an easy access for everyone to enjoy now and in the future.