The Girl Scout Leadership Experience is based on three keys—discover, connect, and take action—but it’s not just for your troop! As a Girl Scout leader, you’ll embark on your own leadership journey as you help girls develop the vital leadership skills they’ll use to make the world a better place. Here are a few basic concepts that outline what leadership means in Girl Scouting.
Leadership is teaching girls:
- That they can do and be anything!
- That they are decision makers and should own their decisions.
- How to live the Girl Scout Law by modeling it for them.
As a leader, see yourself as a coach who:
- Advises, discusses, and cheers on your troop, not as a teacher with a planned lesson or activity.
- Ensures each member understands and can carry out their responsibilities within the troop.
- Encourages Girl Scouts to build their skills and their ethics.
- Gives more responsibilities to the girls as they grow and develop.
It’s important to remember that:
- You cannot know everything that your Girl Scouts might ever want to learn.
- You’ll explore and learn alongside your girls and grow your confidence in the process.
- You’re not expected to know everything about Girl Scouting, but you should know where to go for information—and to ask for help when you need it.
Volunteer Background Check
In addition to becoming registered adult Girl Scout members, volunteers must submit a criminal background check authorization before working with girls. All volunteer background checks expire after three (3) years. Active volunteers are required to complete an updated criminal background check every three (3) years.
Criminal Background Check Information
GSKH is committed to providing a safe and quality program for girls as they participate in Girl Scouting. In order to safeguard the girls in our care, criminal background checks will be conducted for all employees and specified volunteers. The criminal background check is a component of GSKH’s employee and volunteer placement procedure. The background check, conducted by a third-party national screening vendor, includes criminal records searches of convictions, arrests, court records, inmate records, and sex offender registries. It does not include credit checks or motor vehicle records checks.
After completing your membership, check your email (spam or junk as well) for an email from email@example.com . Click the link within the email to authorize your background check.
Once you have submitted your name, former names(s), permanent address, social security number, and date of birth through the secure online portal, the information is sent directly to the national screening vendor. Providing false information, including social security number and date of birth, may be considered justification for non-acceptance of or dismissal from a volunteer position. The social security number on the criminal history records check shall be used for no other purpose than to make the process for conducting a background search more accurate. The results of the background check will be sent to the GSKH Human Resources Manager.
Disqualification from Volunteer Participation
The decision to exclude or limit an individual’s participation as a volunteer is solely within the discretion of Girl Scouts of Kansas Heartland, Inc. Convicted felons are prohibited from serving as Girl Scout leaders, co-leaders, troop committee members, or council employees. Factors to be considered regarding misdemeanor convictions include, but are not limited to, the nature and severity of the crime, and the length of time since the criminal conduct occurred. On a case by case basis, the council may permit or deny the application of a person convicted of a misdemeanor.
A registered sex offender is not allowed to be a Girl Scout staff member or leader, co-leader, troop committee member, or other volunteer as deemed appropriate. A person who has been found, as a juvenile, to have committed an offense that if committed by an adult would have been a sex offense, is not eligible for volunteer service or employment with GSKH. No one may be a Girl Scout leader, co-leader, or troop committee member if a member of their household is a registered sex offender or who has been found, as a juvenile, to have committed an offense that if committed by an adult would have been a sex offense. This applies regardless of the nature of the crime.
Background checks that find a criminal or sex offender conviction will be reviewed by the Human Resource Manager. A letter of pre-adverse action with a copy of the report and the Summary of Rights under the Fair Credit Reporting Act (FCRA) will be sent to the individual by certified mail. The individual will be asked to respond to the council. If the individual disagrees with the results of the check, he/she has thirty (30) days to dispute the results directly to the screening vendor.
GSKH will rely upon the information contained in the criminal history report until a corrected report has been provided. After 10 days, the Human Resources Manager will send the adverse action letter to the individual by certified mail. A letter of rejection (containing no confidential information) will be sent to the GSKH administrator, supervisor of the applicant/volunteer, and the staff supervisor.
GSKH will maintain the confidentiality of all criminal background information, including information regarding disqualification decisions.
Your responsibilities as a Girl Scout volunteer include:
- Accepting the Girl Scout Promise and Law.
- Understanding and coaching the three keys to leadership that are the basis of the Girl Scout Leadership Experience: discover, connect, and take action.
- Sharing your knowledge, experience, and skills with a positive and flexible approach.
- Working in a partnership with Girl Scouts so that their activities are girl-led and that they learn by doing, individually and a group. You’ll also partner with other volunteers and council staff for support and guidance.
- Organizing fun, interactive, girl-led activities that address relevant issues and match girls’ interests and needs.
- Providing guidance and information regarding Girl Scout group meetings with girls’ families on a regular and ongoing basis through a variety of tools, including email, phone calls, newsletters, blogs, other forms of social media, and any other method you choose.
- Processing and completing registration forms and other paperwork, such as permission slips.
- Communicating effectively and delivering clear, organized, and vibrant presentations or information to an individual or the group.
- Overseeing with honesty, integrity, and careful record-keeping the funds that girls raise.
- Maintaining a close connection to your volunteer support team as well as your council.
- Facilitating a safe experience for every Girl Scout.
- Referring to Safety Activity Checkpoints regarding parent permissions, travel safety, money-earning, online safety, first aid requirements, and much more.
Girl Scouts of Kansas Heartland expects that all volunteers will act in an appropriate manner at all times while participating in a Girl Scout capacity. At times it is necessary to use corrective action in order to maintain a positive, safe environment for girls and to protect the assets of girls, Girl Scout groups and the council.
Objectionable or unsatisfactory conduct will not be permitted and may result in disciplinary action, up to and including termination, depending on the severity of the violation. When possible, Girl Scouts of Kansas Heartland will work with the volunteer to establish actions to correct the situation. Serious violations may involve immediate suspension or release from the volunteer position.
Girl Scouts of Kansas Heartland or the volunteer may initiate termination of appointment to a volunteer role. A volunteer may be released from an appointed position because of the inability or failure to complete the requirements of the position, including training and background check, failure to abide by GSUSA or GSKH policies or standards, misuse or mismanagement of Girl Scout funds, or failure to accept and foster the mission and goals of the organization. Volunteers may still be a registered member of Girl Scout of the United States of America regardless of voluntary resignation or council termination.