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Structure and staffing

Structure and staffing

Any camp depends on the quality and to some degree, quantity of the staff involved in bringing the programme and services to the participants. They are the human face of the event and a key function of the camp organisers will be to establish their own teams. It must be stressed that, in keeping with the policies of The Scout Association, all unknown Leaders and adults who are going to be working with young people are checked out using the CRB procedure through the Records Office at Gilwell Park.

There can be no exceptions to this policy and those unwilling to agree cannot offer their services. Additionally there are differing opinions on the use of Explorer Scouts as staff, especially if there are Explorer Scout participants in the camp. If Explorer Scouts are used, then it's useful to establish a Staff sub-camp to give the necessary privacy to staff and ensure that differing standards can be accommodated.

Without exception, all existing International Camps are split into sub-camps. This helps to make the organisation of the camp more easily manageable. The sub-camp may be used for:

  • Maintenance of camping standards
  • Sub-camp activities
  • Spare time activities
  • First aid/first response
  • Catering

Most camps have a large programme team, which is further sub divided into teams for individual activities, such as water activities.

  • It's probably best to allow activity leaders to recruit their own staff and to offer the appropriate training
  • Be careful that outside helpers comply with Scout Association policy and rules
  • There should be adequate ratios of staff to participants
  • Good recruitment will result in staff knowing what is expected of them, possibly through the provision of a job description, and utilising the skills available

The staff will be drawn from a range of sources:

  • Leaders from within the County/Area
  • Leaders from other Counties/Areas
  • Explorer Scouts
  • Overseas Leaders
  • Specialist adults not directly connected to Scouting
  • Staff from commercial and other partners

There are a number of approaches of utilising the Leaders from the participating groups:

  • The booking policy should indicate an ideal ‘Leader to youth ratio’ to ensure there is less boredom of those Leaders
  • Participating group Leaders can be enrolled as staff, in advance of the camp
  • Use of International patrols and good sub-camp scheme frees up Leaders for other duties
  • Establish a ‘Job Market’ to allocate tasks
  • Provide skills training sessions for visiting Leaders
  • Don’t ask visiting Leaders to do the jobs that no one else wants to do