side menu icon

Safety Activity Checkpoints

When preparing for any activity with girls, always begin with the Safety Activity Checkpoints written specifically for that particular activity. This introduction provides an overview of the format of each set of checkpoints. Note: In addition to reading these checkpoints yourself, you can also e‐mail or print them for co‐volunteers, parents/guardians, and girls.

Know where to do the activity.
Quick list of the most common places girls carry out the activity

Include girls with disabilities.
Tips and special Web sites for information on including girls with disabilities

Gear Definitions.
Basic Gear includes clothing and equipment girls are likely to already have in their possession.
Specialized Gear includes clothing and equipment girls may need to purchase, rent, or borrow.

Prepare for the Activity.
These checkpoints discuss steps to take in advance of the activity. Not every category is listed here, and not every activity includes these categories.

  • Communicate with council and parents. Tips for following council guidelines and keeping parents informed
  • Ensure prerequisites. Ranges from an ability to swim to knowledge of primitive camping
  • Arrange for transportation and adult supervision. Recommended adult-to-girl ratios for this activity
  • Verify instructor knowledge and experience. Ensuring the volunteers or on-site instructors possess the proper skill set, knowledge, training/certification and/or documented experience according to your council’s guidelines, as outlined in Volunteer Essentials
  • Select a safe site. A game plan for ensuring the safest experience possible
  • Compile key contacts. Information on itineraries, phone trees, and other contact information
  • Respect the environment. Tips for ensuring environmental responsibility
  • Prepare for emergencies. First-aider requirements and other emergency precautions

On the Day of the Activity
These checkpoints include important final reminders on the day of the activity. Not every category is listed here, and not every activity includes these categories.

  • Get a weather report. Ways to monitor the weather for any outdoor activity and/or activity requiring transportation
  • Review rescue tips. Activity‐specific rescue tips
  • Use the buddy system. The best way to ensure no one is separated from the group or unable to get help
  • Be prepared in the event of a storm with lightning. Special details for outdoor warm‐weather activities

Guide you to the best‐known and best‐respected websites.

Know-How for Girls
Games, mini‐lessons, and other fun ways to expand girls’ knowledge.

Helps you and the girls master activity‐specific terminology.

Safety Activity Checkpoints

If Safety Activity Checkpoints do not exist for an activity you and the girls are interested in please send your activity and travel forms to your service unit team member for review. In the absence of a service team member for review please send to your Membership Services Specialist, before making any definite plans with the girls. A few activities are allowed only with written council pre-approval and only for girls 12 and over, while some are off-limits completely:

*HIGH RISK: The following activities are considered High Risk by GSUSA. Submit an Activity and Travel Form (Short Form or Long Form) to GSCWM for these activities prior to beginning planning with girls. Any forms for activities on this list will require a current Certificate of Insurance from the venue: Archery, Bounce houses and related equipment, Campgrounds (other than GSCWM facilities), Chartered buses and other chartered vehicles (i.e. limousines, campers, boats), Challenge Courses and Ropes Courses, experience simulated skydiving and zero-gravity rooms, Gymnastics, Hayrides, Horseback Riding,Indoor Trampolines, Rafting and Boating, Climbing and Rappelling, Scuba Diving, Segway, Skating rinks (roller and ice), Skiing and Snow Tubing , Snorkeling, Surfing, Swimming Facilities, Theme Parks, Vehicle Rental, Water Parks, Wind Surfing, Water Skiing and Wake boarding, and Zip Lines. In addition to GSUSA high risk activities, GSCWM deems activities involving interaction with animals as high risk. A Certificate of Insurance (COI) must be received for trips involving any interaction with animals.

CAUTION: You must get written pre-approval from your council for girls ages 12 and older who will operate motorized vehicles, such as go-carts and personal watercraft; use firearms; take trips on waterways that are highly changeable or uncontrollable.

WARNING: The following activities are never allowed for any girl: potentially uncontrolled free-falling (bungee jumping, hang gliding, parachuting, parasailing, and outdoor trampolining; helmet diving; zorbing; creating extreme variations of approved activities (such as high-altitude climbing and aerial tricks on bicycles, skis, snowboards, skateboards, water-skis, and wakeboards); hunting; shooting a projectile at another person; riding all-terrain vehicles and motor bikes;  fly in noncommercial aircraft, such as small private planes, helicopters, sailplanes, untethered hot air balloons, and blimps.; and taking watercraft trips in Class V or higher.

Review or download the entire Safety Activity Checkpoints document.


ZOOs and activities involving interaction with animals are deemed high risk by GSCWM .  A Certificate of Insurance (COI) must be received for trips involving any interaction with animals.