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Volunteering at Scouts is changing to help us reach more young people

Volunteering is changing to help us reach more young people

Volunteering is changing at Scouts. Read more

Discover what this means

Act for Youth Campaign

We've been working with the National Counter Terrorism Security Office (NaCTSO), who recently launched the Act for Youth campaign. This campaign educates young people on what to do in the event they're caught up in an incident.

Guidance for adults should be watched before delivering sessions to young people and provides information on what the adult's role is should you be involved in an incident.

We've created some Frequently Asked Questions's (FAQs), which we recommend you read before delivering this content to young people. They'll help to support you when you're planning your event and the considerations you should make.

Act for Youth Campaign – FAQs

Act for Youth is Action Counters Terrorism (ACT) Policing’s youth campaign designed to:

  • Help educate 11 to 16 year olds on how to stay safe in the event of a firearms or weapons terrorist attack.
  • The key advice is to follow Run, Hide, Tell guidance until police arrive on the scene, but insight shows that this messaging is not always effectively reaching younger audiences.

You can find a further summary on learning to prepare at Protect UK.

Counter Terrorism Policing liaised extensively with UK youth groups and received backing from the Department for Education and many youth organisations, including Scouts. The team also collaborated with The PSHE Association, Girlguiding, St John Ambulance, the NSPCC and Childline in the creation of the film.

No, primarily it's safety session and safety message we want the young people to explore and take away.

It's important to give reassurance throughout and to avoid ‘worst case scenario’ or stereotypical thinking.

It's also important to note that neither the film nor the session plans place any focus on the perpetrators of the attack.

They're never seen or discussed directly, as the motivation behind the attack is irrelevant to the safety message.

The focus of this session is not violent extremism or radicalisation.

The Run, Hide, Tell message is relevant in any gun or knife attack, irrespective of who the attacker is or what their motivation for the attack might be.

While discussing gun and knife attacks can be a challenging topic, National Counter Terrorism Security Office (NaCTSO) believe equipping young people with this information will empower them to know how to avoid harm and will potentially save lives.

The target age group of the campaign is 11 to 16 years old. Therefore, we recommend this material is used with the Scouts and Explorer sections.

We piloted the material in West Yorkshire with an Explorer Scout Unit, two World Scout Jamboree Units, and their parents and carers.

Before delivering this material to young people, volunteers should first watch the ‘Introduction to Counter Terrorism Awareness’, which incorporates three short films.

ACT for Youth: Run Hide Tell resources

There is a version specifically for Youth Organisations like us.

The animated film's designed to be delivered as part of a session, not in isolation.

The pack conveys the Run, Hide, Tell advice to a younger audience in an appropriate manner, with the messaging being divided into two lesson plans.

One's designed for Key Stage 3 (11 to 14 years) and could be used for Scouts.

The other's a more detailed lesson designed for Key Stage 4 (15 to 16 years) and applies to Explorers.

This Run Hide Tell package can then be followed by TREAT, a separate session in which bespoke and age appropriate trauma first aid guidance is presented.

This session guides a young person on how to render first aid to themselves or another, while HIDING and waiting for Police to rescue them. This has been created in conjunction with St John Ambulance. A leaflet has also been produced to support the session and as something for young people to take away.

The material has been designed to take around 30 minutes of time to deliver, but there's flexibility in this and the resource explains this.

We recommend that this isn't something that's delivered in isolation, but is delivered as part of a package of safety messages, such as what to do in the event of a fire for example. You could use this material with young people attending large scale events, such as World Scout Jamboree Units, as well as in sectional meetings.

As with all Scouts activities, it's important to ensure that parents and carers are comfortable with their child taking part. You'll have systems in place for doing this already and will know the parents and carers in your section best.

There's no formal requirement to ask for consent, but it's always good to make sure that parents and carers are aware in advance.

There is support and information on page 7 in the resource pack on ways to approach this with parents and carers.

This isn't something that will be compulsory for schools to deliver. Therefore, we want to support all young people having the right information to keep themselves and others safe.

It's advisable to think carefully about when to deliver this session. While it's a key safety message that all young people could benefit from, there are particular occasions that would be inappropriate for delivery, such as:

In the immediate aftermath of an attack: Whether an attack has personally affected any of the young people in your organisation or not, it's inappropriate to introduce the Run Hide Tell messaging in the immediate aftermath of a publicly reported attack. The session is more likely to be highly emotive or to unnecessarily distress young people.

On the anniversary of an attack: Similarly, delivering a session about a gun or knife attack on a significant anniversary of a similar attack may lead to young people drawing parallels, becoming unduly distressed or highly anxious.

Immediately before an organised trip: Although this may form part of an adult’s risk assessment, if leading a trip to a busy public place or major city, it'd be inappropriate to raise this messaging with young people immediately before taking them on a trip.

It's possible that introducing the Run Hide Tell message before a trip may make young people more anxious about the trip. It could also lead them to believe that a gun or knife attack is highly likely, which might prevent them from choosing to attend. It's therefore better to deliver the workshop as part of a planned programme unrelated to a specific trip, with a quick reminder as part of a general safety pre-brief before residential visits or trips.

There's no specific badge. However, depending on how you deliver the session and, particularly if this is alongside other safety messages, it could have links to the following badges and awards:

Scout Fire Safety Activity badge – you could work towards this badge at the same time, building in fire safety messages to the session.

Scout Local Knowledge Activity badge – part of the requirements are to locate the police station if in rural and suburban areas.

Scouts and Explorers Emergency Aid Staged Activity badge – particularly if delivering the TREAT activities. Stage 1 requires young people to know what to do when call 999 and the importance of getting help.

Adults are encouraged to take charge in the situation, but to follow the Run Hide Tell message.

Information for adults can be found online at Additional information can also be found on page 5 of the resource for adults, which is important to be aware of before delivering this session.

The ‘Introduction to Counter Terrorism Awareness’ which incorporates three short films details adults role in taking charge in situations. This should be watched by adults before delivering the ACT for youth session with young people. Watch the video.

Like with all activities you should undertake a risk assessment of that activity / visit or trip and remember the purple card ‘Safe Scouting and Emergency Procedures’ for what to do in an emergency.



Advice for Large Scale Events

It is without doubt our intention to ensure that we create environments for all young people to experience the adventure of Scouting safely; clearly including large scale events. We should consider the proportionate and realistic measures needed to keep everyone safe.

The following advice is offered to the organisers of large scale events involving significant numbers of people:

  • work in conjunction with statutory authorities (Local Authorities, Police, etc.) as
    appropriate to ascertain the threat level to events;

  • undertake a detailed risk assessment taking into account the threat level ensuring
    that mitigating actions are proportionate and realistic; and

  •  ensure that emergency procedures are well documented and understood by those
    directly responsible for the management of events.

    The following are signposts to helpful advice and guidance:

  • Government advice on Protecting crowded places from terrorism

  • Government advice on Recognising the terrorist threat

  • National Police Chiefs’ Council Stay Safe advice and information video
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