Here we answer many frequently asked questions about Scouting.
How much does it cost to join Scout Australia NSW?
To join the Scout Association there is a one-off joining fee of $20 plus a State membership fee that is $34.00 per quarter, which includes personal accident and public liability insurance.
From April 1, 2012 all Scout Regions will be on quarterly billing.
Each Scout Group is responsible for managing its own local costs so it’s best to check with your local group for their own membership and subscription costs.
Is there a uniform?
A shirt and optional belt is all that makes up the basic Scout uniform. These items can be purchased from Snowgum stores or through second hand clothing pools run by many local Scout Groups. Scarves and badges are provided at no cost by the local Scout Group. Other Scouting apparel e.g. hats, windcheaters, etc. is available for purchase if you wish.
Does my child need to purchase special outdoor equipment?
No. Your local Scout Group will either own or have access to a large range of camping and adventure equipment such as tents, ropes, canoes, and cooking gear. The cost of this equipment is met through local fundraising and your membership subscription.
Which Scout Section will my child go into?
Your child will be placed into a Scout Section depending on their age. The age ranges which serve as a guide for each Section are:
Joey Scouts 6 - 8 years
If you have any questions about the age range for your child, please ask your Group Leader.
Can girls become Scouts, too?
Yes. Girls are very welcome to join Scouts, which makes it an ideal activity for the whole family. Girls have been part of Scouts Australia NSW since 1981 and now comprise around 25% of our membership.
Do Scouts go camping?
Camping is an essential part of the Scouting program – and its lots of fun too. Camping is introduced at age appropriate levels. Joey Scouts and Cub Scouts have sleepovers in the Scout Hall and Family Camps in tents. Scouts, Venturer Scouts and Rovers experience camping in tents and under canvas in the great Australian outdoors.
What if my child has a medical condition, such as asthma or diabetes?
When you first meet with the Section Leader at your local Scout Group, it’s very important to discuss any medical conditions that your child has. Leaders have access to training to support children with many types of medical conditions. With the correct information, Leaders can plan risk strategies to deal with any medical issues should they arise.
What if my child has a physical or mental disability?
Where possible, we encourage the integration of children with special needs into regular Scout Groups. Our Leaders have access to training to support children with physical and mental disabilities and Scout programs can in certain cases be tailored to suit a child’s individual needs. There are also three specialised Scout Groups in NSW which cater specifically for special needs children, with an increased leader to scout ratio.
What opportunities exist for my child to travel overseas?
When your child joins Scouts Australia NSW, they are really joining a youth organisation with over 28 million Members from 155 countries around the world. Once your child is in the Scout Section (ages 11 to 15), they have the opportunity to attend World Jamborees and other international Scout Association events. Costs for these events will usually be met by you; however, some Scout resources have been established to help defray some of these costs. Conditions do apply.
Are the Leaders trained?
All volunteer Leaders participate in basic training courses, and their training must remain current. They also have the opportunity to undertake advanced and specialised training courses, some of which have business and leadership qualifications that are recognised outside of Scouts Australia. All training is delivered under the auspices of the Scouts Australia Institute of Training which is a registered training organisation.
What safeguards are in place to protect my child?
Scouts Australia's child protection system is considered to be amongst the best in the country. Adult Leaders undergo background Police checks, are required to provide references, and receive comprehensive, ongoing training in dealing with children. We aim to have at least two adult Leaders present during all activities. We cater for medical, physical and dietary requirements by obtaining all the necessary information to allow Leaders and other helpers to take appropriate action. At least one person trained in first aid attends all major events.