Leader question: When your troop has an event and you need an extra parent to help chaperone how do you determine who to take with you if you have more than one parent express interest? Do you draw names?
Our Girl Scout leaders shared their thoughts on our Facebook page:
Donna’s opinion: I would let them both go. In this day and age families are spending less and less time together. If a parent WANTS to participate and be there for their child LET THEM! And from the leader perspective, what a great “problem” to have – too many volunteers.
Leesa wrote in: For cookie booths, troop outings & troop events our council requires chaperones to be at the very least background checked by GSUSA and if they are driving, they must also be registered for insurance reasons. Our sign-ups are online so it is first-come, first-served. For troop meetings, any parent can volunteer to be our “helping hands” for the month. We also have 2 scouts with special needs so their adult helpers are always welcome.
Carly’s help: If we are limited its first come, but if I have a parent that can come and doesn’t usually get to then I talk to the first ones who signed up and ask who can bow out to allow the other parent to come. My parents are very gracious about it.
Christina’s troop: I took who would actually help and not just socialize. When they were little I took all the help I could get. If you let them off the hook to early then they never want to help.
Rebecca: Since they need to be registered, we have a few that are and regularly help. Non registered parents can’t chaperone other kids, so if they want to come, they are welcome to but would self pay, and be a tagalong type.
Paula’s idea: We normally travel with lots of wonderful supportive parents. If they are allowed I take as many as wants to go. As long as they pay their own way. Don’t be one of those leaders that drive away parents for events then wonders why they have to do everything themselves. You need to realize that those parents are observing and building trust in you, the program and their scout. Events are also a great way to get to know your parents strengths and weaknesses so you can comfortably know what to delegate to them later. Love those parents for the support system they are and use that position to its fullest. When we attend events were we are limited to number of participating adults, I offer first to my co-leaders that are CPR/First Aid trained. I make it clear why those people were chosen and that the limit wasn’t my rule. It is amazing how many people want to be trained when you do this as well.
Kimberly’s guidance: I’ve had this problem too with Girl Scout parents for chaperones. One time I asked the parents to choose amongst themselves who would go. They all know each other and that worked well. I’ve had a few times that I’ve flat out told them that it’s a girl event and parents were not welcome. A couple weren’t happy, but oh well!