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Troop Leader

Leader Resources

Find every resource you need as a Girl Scout volunteer!

Volunteer Essentials: is a great reference to all topics relating to the Girl Scout Program, including policies, procedures, and information about troops, safety, travel, camp, activities, and more.

Activities in the Community. Troops have the opportunity to schedule flexible events with community partners. We have many individuals and organizations in our council ready to share their unique skills with your girls.

Safety Activity Checkpoints: provides great information when planning activities for girls. This resource will let you know what activities are approved and tips for keeping girls safe. NEW Virtual Troop Meeting SACs.

New Leader's Guide to Success: everything you need to know about leading a troop in one handy document.

Troop Information Update: keeps our Girl Scout team informed on when your Troop meets. This way, new girls will know if your troop has openings!

Zoom Licenses for Troops

We will continue to offer Zoom licenses for troops and Service Units to meet virtually when needed through July 30, 2022. Cost is $36 for the year. Even if troops are meeting in person, it can be a useful resource for preparing for meetings, or when weather or other circumstances causes schools to close. It is also an option to host service unit Leader Meetings virtually at certain times throughout the year.

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Resources for New Troops

Parent Meeting Agenda — a helpful outline for your first parent meeting of the year.

Girl and Adult Health History Forms — Be sure to have one for each girl and each adult.  Keep with you at all times.

Parental Permission for Activities — Parental Permission for yearlong use for events and activities. You only need to have this completed once and can be used for low risk events.

Planning Troop Meetings — There is no such thing as a "standard" troop meeting. A willingness to be flexible is essential, but here are a few guidelines you can use to set up your meetings. 

Ways to Help the Troop — Have family members fill out this form to let you know how they can be involved in supporting the troop this year.

Girl Led Troop Government — Here are some ideas for being girl led at each level, and ways to tell if it's working for your troop!

Troop Finances and Fundraising

Everything else you will need for a successful Girl Scout year:

Change/Request Troop Bank Account — Use this to help you in opening your bank account or requesting any banking changes. 

Managing Troop Finances — Who pays for what? Troop finances should be used as a tool for learning experiences – helping girls grow in their ability to manage money wisely. Here is also a worksheet to demonstrate troop budgets and a sample troop budget spreadsheet.

GSEIWI Money Earning Request — If a troop needs additional funds beyond fall products and cookie sales or for a high award, this form should be submitted to the council for approval.

Field Trips and Troop Travel

Planning a trip?

If your troop is already planning a trip, make sure you are ready to go:

The Troop Travel Resource Guide and Extended Travel Training can be helpful for leaders planning a trip for the first time. Girls will want to work through the Girl Travel Planner as they plan their own travel experience as well.

Outdoor Progression Chart — Not sure what outdoor level your girls are ready for? This chart will give you an idea where to get started.

Girl Scout Destinations — the ultimate adventure for individual Cadette, Senior, and Ambassador girls!

Troop Travel Opportunities — check out Getaways or International Events

Girl Scout Traditions

Five Minute Fillers — Quick ideas for troops and groups of all ages!

Court of Awards — Girl Scouts receive recognition for their accomplishments in the form of patches, badges, pins, and certificates.

Girl Scout Bridging Guide — Some Bridging basics for all age levels.  

Working Through Conflicts — Whenever a group of people get together, conflict can occur. This document gives you behavior to watch for as well as resolution techniques.

Girl Scouts Celebrate Faith Resources — Find social media graphics, content for congregation resources, and bulletin inserts for promoting the connection between your faith community and Girl Scouts.

Keeping Girls Safe

While working with girls and learning new skills is fun and rewarding, assuming responsibility for other people’s children means that some level of risk management and due diligence are involved. There are several resources we use to help you minimize risk and keep girls safe.

Your Troop is required to have:

  • At least two unrelated, approved volunteers present at all times, plus additional volunteers as necessary, depending on the size of the group and the ages and abilities of girls
  • Any adult that is supervising girls must be an approved volunteer and be at least 18 years old
  • One Troop Leader in every group must be female

Volunteer-to-girl ratios show the minimum number of volunteers needed to supervise a specific number of girls. These supervision ratios were devised to ensure the safety and health of girls. Please refer to the ratio chart below.

ratio girls picture

Planning Safe Activities

When preparing for any activity with girls, start by reading the Girl Scout Safety Activity Checkpoints for that particular activity. Each Safety Activity Checkpoint offers you required guidelines on where to do this activity, how to include girls with disabilities, where to find both basic and specialized gear required for the activity, how to prepare yourselves for the activity, and what specific steps to follow on the day of the activity. Safety Activity Checkpoints will note if a First Aider is required as well.

Emergency Situations

Although we all hope the worst never happens, it’s important to know and follow our council procedures for handling emergency incidents. At the scene of the incident, safety is your priority. Provide care for the injured person or obtain medical assistance and then immediately report the emergency to council staff. Refer any media to council staff.

Call 800-798-0833 during business hours or call 309-764-8833 after business hours to report an emergency.

Report accidents, injuries, and illnesses which occur at a Girl Scout sponsored activity to the council office using the accident report form.

Make sure a general First Aid kit is available at your meeting place and accompanies girls on any activity. You may need to provide the kit if one is not already available at your meeting location. You must always have on hand the names and phone numbers of our council office, parents and guardians, and emergency services such as the police, fire department, or hospital.

Honor Troops

Honor Troop
There are so many things to do, places to be, and people to meet in Girl Scouts. As a Troop Leader, you might get a little lost on where to start. Our team put together a helpful checklist of the top ranked activities by girls! If your Troop achieves all eight steps, our marketing team will give your Troop a shout out on social media for your achievements. Download your Honor Troop Checklist and find the steps below.

  1. Set and keep a regular meeting time and location
  2. Participate in Girl Scout traditions like reciting the Promise and Law at each meeting
  3. Complete a community service project
  4. Take part in an outdoor activity
  5. Experience a field trip or Girl Scout event
  6. Earn badges and journeys
  7. Participate in the Fall Product and Cookie Programs
  8. Have fun with each activity and include girls in planning

Achieve all eight steps? Complete our quick form and attach photos.

Honor Troop Application