How can you, as a Girl Scout volunteer, determine whether an
activity is safe and appropriate? Good judgment and common sense often
dictate the answer. What’s safe in one circumstance may not be safe in
another. An incoming storm, for example, might force you to assess or
discontinue an activity. If you are uncertain about the safety of an
activity, call your council staff with full details and don’t proceed
without approval. Err on the side of caution and make the safety of
girls your most important consideration. Prior to any activity, read
the specific Safety Activity Checkpoints (available on your council’s
website or from your support team in some other format) related to any
activity you plan to do with girls.
If Safety Activity Checkpoints do not exist for an activity you and the girls are interested in, check with your council before making any definite plans with the girls. A few activities are allowed only with written council pre-approval and only for girls 12 and over, while some are off-limits completely:
When planning activities with girls, note the abilities of each girl and carefully consider the progression of skills from the easiest part to the most difficult. Make sure the complexity of the activity does not exceed girls’ individual skills—bear in mind that skill levels decline when people are tired, hungry, or under stress. Also use activities as opportunities for building teamwork, which is one of the outcomes for the Connect key in the GSLE.
Girls’ health histories—which may include a physician’s examination
and a list of immunizations—as needed. You will be asked to maintain
these records for your group. Please keep in mind that information
from a health examination is confidential and may be shared only with
people who must know this information (such as the girl herself, her
parent/guardian, and a health practitioner).
For various reasons, some parents/guardians may object to immunizations or medical examinations. Councils must attempt to make provisions for these girls to attend Girl Scout functions in a way that accommodates these concerns.
When traveling with girls, the girls' annual medical history forms must accompany the drivers of the vehicles the girls are in and then be held by the troop advisors for the duration of the trip.
It is important for you to also be aware of any medications a girl may take or allergies she may have.