Parent, or Occasional, Helpers Explained

There is no role, in Scottish Scouting, called "Parent Helper". 

However, we offer several alternatives for those who cannot offer the commitment of becoming Section Leaders or Assistant Leaders.

1. If a parent (or other adult) wishes to help on an occasional basis (perhaps on a rota) they can be Casual Helpers. They should not help more frequently that once a month and are they not Members or Associate Members of the Scout Association. They should complete training for Module 1 within five months. They should complete a "Self-Declaration" supplied by the Group or Section Leader and they should not have unsupervised access to children. A copy of the Self Declaration form can be found in this section of the website under "Useful Documents". This form should be held locally but destroyed when the helper is no longer involved in Scouting.

This role is not appropriate for home hospitality or help at camp, both of which require full Disclosure (see below). 

2. If a parent (or other adult) wishes to assist in a Section more frequently than once a month (but do not want to take on a Leadership or Assistant Leadership role) they could become a Section Assistant, which is a role requiring full Disclosure. Section Assistants are normally Associate Members (although they can wear uniform and become Full Members if they wish to make the Scout Promise). Section Assistants join the Movement by filling in an Adult Information form and a PVG Disclosure, in the same way as other Members. Their training commitment is restricted to two modules (1 and 3). Your Group or Section Leader can supply more information.

3. An option for those who want to help Scouting but do not wish to be part of a Sectional team is to join Scout Active Support (the SAS!). This is another appointment requiring full Disclosure. Again, the minimum membership is "Associate Member" but they could be uniformed Full Members due to previous service. SAS members join by filling in the Adult Information form and the PVG Disclosure form. The only training requirement is Module 1. For further information, see the SAS page in this section of this website or contact the District Scout Active Support Manager at

4. For those adults wishing to help at a residential experience or camp (involving an overnight stay) or to offer home hospitality, there will clearly be opportunities for unsupervised access to children. For this reason, Disclosure is essential. If there is to be no other involvement in Scouting, the appropriate role (in Scotland) is "Non-Member PVG Only". There is no training requirement or Scouting membership - just the Disclosure process. This is intended to be a temporary arrangement, so the role (and Disclosure) is cancelled when the involvement in Scouting ceases. Often, adults find their Scouting experience satisfying and wish to be involved again. In this case, it would be appropriate to take on a more permanent appointment such as those described above. This removes the need for multiple Disclosure applications.

5. There are administrative appointments for those who prefer to offer support in the background. For example, you could become a trustee such as a treasurer, secretary or committee member at Group or District levels. As our Groups and Deeside District are children's charities, Disclosure is required. There is a version of training Module 1 designed for trustees.

Modern Scouting is flexible. Volunteers offer the commitment in time and level of responsibilty that is appropriate to them. Group Scout Leaders and Section Leaders can discuss how various skills and interests can be used to support Scouting.

Note: PVG stands for Protection of Vulnerable Groups. The PVG Scheme is the Scottish disclosure (vetting) system.