Meet the Core Team

Camp Chief - Raymond Gillespie

Camp Chief - Raymond Gillespie

I have been involved in scouting from a young age where I was a scout in 1st Aughnacloy Scout Group Co. Tyrone with the late Roy Mc Connell and Rev. Barton as my Scout Leaders. It was in 1998 that I took over as leader of 1st Aughnacloy Scout Group on Roy’s retirement. In 2008 Lorraine and I started Aughnacloy Explorer Scouts. We currently have a very active group of 15 teenagers. We encourage them to participate in the scout award scheme and obtaining their Queen Scout Award. We have recently started delivering the Duke of Edinburgh scheme. I have been lucky enough to travel to Switzerland twice, Austria, all over the Uk and Isle of Man. I have completed training to deliver many adventurous activities to Scouts including hill walking, archery, canoeing and kayaking. I have also had training in child protection, first aid and CEOP internet safety. One of my highlights in Scouting was attending the 22nd World Jamboree as an Assistant Unit Leader. I was part of the leadership team for NI 2016 explorer belt. I also took five NI scout troops to KISC in 2015. As I take on the role of Camp Chief for NIjam 2017 my team hope that we can deliver and build on the legacy of NIjam 2013 and deliver a truly international experience for NI scouts.


Deputy Camp Chief - Stephen Donaldson

Deputy Camp Chief - Stephen Donaldson

I have been involved in Scouting since I joined Cubs at the age of 8. Following my time in Venture Scouts I became an assistant Scout Leader with 2nd Donaghadee and then Scout Leader when my Scout Leader George Purdy moved on to become Chief Commissioner for Northern Ireland and then Chief Scout. After a spell as Group Scout Leader I took on the role as County Commissioner for County Down in 2005, a role which I finished in 2016. In September 2016 I became Northern Ireland Chief Commisioner. I have over the years attended many International Camps across the UK with my own Troop including 3 visits to Peak in Derbyshire. Having helped out on staff at NI Jam 2013 I am very excited about being Deputy Camp Chief for NI Jam 2017 and having the opportunity to help deliver a really special international experience to Scouting in Northern Ireland.





Head of Administration - Philip Dalzell

Head of Admin - Philip Dalzell

I have been involved in scouting most of my life having started as a beaver in Donaghadee. I started my Leader career at Ballygowan as an ASL, then at 4th Bangor. Presently I am an ACL at 2nd Donaghadee I have many years of scouting experience in the scout and cub sections. I have broad experience as IST at many camps locally and internationally, most recently in Sweden. During the 2013 summer I became involved in assisting the leadership team for the NI Explorer belt, which was held in Belgium. I was also on the camp maker team at NI Jam 2013 where I was involved in the ’Wild Zone’, running a base with work and Play Explorers. To date one of my best experiences was to be part of the Northern Ireland Unit, as an assistant leader that went to the 23rd World Scout Jamboree in Japan. I’m looking forward to the adventure ahead for myself and the participants for NIjam 2017 and to enjoy the experience of an International scouting event in Northern Ireland.




Head of Programme - Richard Dorrian

Head of Programme - Richard Dorrian

I have been in scouting since I was 6 when I started as a Beaver and since then have been through all the sections. In 1989 I gained my warrant as an Assistant Scout Leader and about 7 years later became the Scout Leader. I have attended and run camps throughout the UK and Ireland and have also attended a camp at Kandersteg. I have achieved my activity permits in Climbing, Hillwalking and Archery and use them to organise and run events at Group, District, County and also Northern Ireland levels. I have had the privelege of being District Commissioner for the Strangford District. Apart from receiving my Queens scout award and attending Windsor, my proudest moment in my scouting career was organising and taking part in the lighting of the Paralympic Flame on the top of Slieve Donard in 2012 and the events that followed. We have put a programme team together for NIJam 2017 that we know will deliver a fun filled and full programme over the course of the week of the camp.Here’s hoping we all have a great time!



Water Activities Coordinator - Ciaran McGrath

Water Activities - Ciaran McGrath

I starting in Scouts as a Beaver scout in 1st Randalstown and I’ve been involved with the group ever since. I have been both an Assistant Scout Leader and Scout Leader over the last 20 years. I have recently been appointed County Commissioner for County Antrim. Scouting has taken me to many different countries and given me lots of experiences. A memorable one was standing on top of a mountain in the Lake District and as a fighter jet whizzed past below we were able to look down into the cockpit. I have had the opportunity to climb mountains, cycle along the canals in Holland, go potholing, sail across the Irish Sea and canoe on Lough Erne. I know that without scouting I would never have done any of these! I looked after the water activities bases at NIJAM 2013 and had a fantastic team working with me to deliver an excellent experience for all. The team was made up of both qualified adults and Explorer scouts who we assessed and awarded permits for the event so they could help on the water. It was this mix of experience and new talent which made the activities a success. I hope to replicate this at NIJAM 2017. If you currently hold kayaking or canoeing permits or are an Explorer with a fair amount of paddling experience I would love you to come and help. See you at NIJAM and Keep Scouting!



Head of Staffing - Anne Nicholson

Head of Staffing - Anne Nicholson

I have been involved in scouting since I was fourteen where I helped 1st Islandmagee Cub Pack as a young leader for my Guide Service Emblem award. It was in 1992 that I then took over the Cub pack and became Akela. With our group thriving we decided to start the scouts again and in 2001 I stepped down as Akela and took over the Scouts and Explorer Scouts. Our Scouts and Explorers cover a wide programme from taking part in our district events, County Antrim Events and Northern Ireland events, we have recently awarded two Queens Scout Awards and three Gold Duke of Edinburgh Awards plus the numerous scout awards eg Gold Chief Scout award etc. With this all happening with the group I decided to gain my Duke of Edinburgh Assessor permit, my hillwalking permit, Archery instructor and Emergency Care NI. Over my scouting career I have been involved with South East Antrim District Team where I held Adc cubs and was part of executive team. Presently I am Northern Ireland Commissioner for Scouts. I have been involved as a member of the NI core team helping run "Bear Big Breakfast", NI archery competition and NI Camp recently I took on a role for NIEX 2015, helping smaller troops come together to get their Bronze and Silver Duke of Ed expedition. I know that there are lots of opportunities and challenges for our young people within scouting and hope I can help all those involved in to gain awards and most importantly have FUN at NIjam 2017.



Head of Setup - Tom Acheson

Head of Setup - Tom Acheson

I have been involved in scouting since the age of 9 as a Wolf Cub with 1st Greyabbey Scout Group. For the last 25 years I have been involved as a leader with 2nd Newtownards scout group of which I am now the Group Scout Leader. I have been involved at District, County and Northern Ireland events in scouting and recently just stood down as ACC scouts for County Down a position I held for 10 years. From 1996 I have attended international camps all over the UK as a member of staff and been team leader at several of them. I am a member of team 5 at Crawfordsburn scout activity centre. I was on the activity team at the last NIJAM 2013. I currently hold permits in scouting in Hillwalking, Archery and Nights away. I am also involved in training young persons for the DOE award and recently just gained my qualification to take them on their expedition training in the hills. I will be working closely with the other members of the Core Team and the Sub Camp Staff to ensure that they have all the equipment etc. necessary for their different roles and activities. Looking forward to 2017 and seeing all the young people having a wonderful experience and fun at NIJAM 2017.



Head of Activities - Stephen Marshall

Head of Activities -

Hello there, my name is Steve Marshall and I am head of onsite programme for NIJam 2017. I have been involved in scouting from the young age of 6 when I joined beavers and have moved up through all the sections. I have been a young leader with beaver and cub groups and then a leader with 1st Bangor scouts and Gryphon Explorer Unit. In 2001 I joined the warden’s team at Crawfordsburn Scout Centre and have been involved ever since. I am currently employed as the Activities Assistant at Crawfordsburn. I am confident that this NIJam activity team is the best there is, the best there was and the best there ever will be!



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