Risks Associated with Core Youth Activities
The adherence to supervision ratios for Unit Meetings is the fundamental way of managing risk associated with core youth activities. There must be at least two adults present at any Unit activity including at least one qualified Leader or, if that is not possible, either a new Leader who has completed the Induction stage of the Leadership Qualification or a qualified Manager. In addition to this minimum requirement, the following supervision ratios apply:
- 5-9 years old – 1 adult : 8 Guides (Minimum 2 adults including 1 qualified Leader)
- 9-14 years old – 1 adult : 12 Guides (Minimum 2 adults including 1 qualified Leader)
- 14-17 years – 1 adult: 15 Guides. (Minimum 2 adults including 1 qualified Leader)
Unit Leaders can use a generic risk assessment for meetings but should still get into the habit of asking the 3 questions referred to in the identifying risk section at every meeting. Leaders are responsible for ensuring the meeting place complies with health and safety standards. Some States require an annual safety audit of the meeting place; regardless of this policy encourage Leaders should be encouraged to do a safety audit of the meeting place every term.
The complete set of guidance notes on the national Ratios can be found on the Guidelines For Girl Guides webpage – Ratios at a Glance Page.
The Leader’s Handbook has a suggested planning process which Leaders can use when they are planning any activity. It requires that they consider the following: purpose of activity, Leader qualifications and experience, girl requirements, equipment, location, safety and contingencies.
Camping and Adventure Activities
All management responsibilities for the camp rest with the Leader-in-charge (LIC), who must be appropriately qualified. The District Manager must be notified before the camp although they have has no special responsibilities for a normal camp. However, if it includes an overnight walk or joint overnight walk the LIC must discuss the proposal with the District Manager. For an interstate camp and international camp the LIC makes an application to the State with the support of the District Manager.
An adventure-based activity is one which contains a significant element of risk for those taking part and so the person in charge (and/or the instructors) must have specific knowledge and skills. The OUT.02 Adventure Activity Permission Form must be completed for all adventure activities in conjunction with an ADM.27 Activity Consent Form for Youth Members. The District Manager (or Region Manager or State Outdoors Manager in some States) is responsible for approving adventure-based activities and ideally the Adventure-based Activity Permission Forms must be submitted to them at least four weeks prior to the activity.
Once you have checked the Risk Management plan, check with your Region or State Outdoor Manager for activities those which are not normally covered by insurance. If an activity is not covered by insurance, then it cannot be undertaken as a Guiding activity. In exceptional circumstances there may be an activity which is not normally covered but the State Outdoors Manager is able to get approval from the insurer.
GGA has produced a Risk Assessment template available on the GGA website which can be used for outdoor activities, events and camps. The template lists possible hazards relating to people, environment and equipment, e.g.
- people: behavioural problems, physical abilities, exhaustion
- environmental: weather, sun exposure, traffic, insects, animals
- equipment: insufficient equipment, broken equipment
Transporting of Guides
Generally volunteers and staff are discouraged from providing transport to an activity. Where transport is provided, it must be directly related to the program and prior written authorisation must have been gained.
Important: Several State Girl Guide Organisations have specific policies regarding the transportation of guides so please contact your local girl guide state office for clarification on what policy is in place.
Last Modified: 17/05/21 at 12:28 PM