Volunteer Development

Learning Opportunities for GSKH Volunteers

Girl Scouts strives to provide you with the tools you need for your volunteer position, and to direct you to additional information on certain topics when you want to learn more. Volunteer learning is offered in a variety of ways to best meet your unique learning styles: written resources, face-to-face learning, interactive online learning—and additional methods are being developed and tested all the time.

  1. Fundamental Courses
  2. Outdoor Leadership Skills
  3. First-Aid and CPR
  4. Enrichment Opportunities
  5. Leadership Conferences
  6. Scheduling and Logistics
  7. Waiver of Learning Requirements

Senior and Ambassador Girl Scouts may attend Outdoor Leadership and First-Aid & CPR courses with adult volunteers. For additional Older Girl Learning Opportunities, click here.

1. Fundamental Courses

◊ Girl Scouting 101 (GS101)

At least one volunteer from each troop or group working directly with girls must complete Girl Scouting 101 within 3 months of leadership appointment.  All volunteers are encouraged to take this course.  Girl Scouting 101 (GS101) is an easy-to-use online course which introduces volunteers to Girl Scouts’ inspiring national leadership experience, from Journey resources and The Girl’s Guide to Girl Scouting to cookie sales, safety guidelines, and much more. Spend about 45–50 minutes learning online—whenever you can fit it into your day.

  • Go to http://training.girlscouts.org, select GS101 in your preferred language, and enter the password: aboutGS101 (password is case sensitive).
  • Make sure to enter your contact information, and select Kansas Heartland from the drop-down for Council Name, so that your volunteer record will be updated.
  • Use the Resources tab at the top of your screen to find more helpful information for each Girl Scouting level.
  • Feel free to take notes for your own use, and know that you can always come back and view any part of GS101 again.

◊ Introduction to Troop Management

This session for Troop Leaders and Co-leaders provides all of the information required to get started with a Girl Scout troop.  It includes information on parent meetings, troop finances, Volunteer Essentials, and council forms. Introduction to Troop Management sessions are arranged and scheduled with all new leaders by a council staff member or service unit volunteer.  Introduction to Troop Management can be done at your convenience, and may be included in a Service Unit meeting.  Please contact your MVP Specialist or your Service Unit Volunteer Facilitator about setting up this session either on an individual basis, or at a Service Unit meeting.
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2. Outdoor Leadership Skills

Thinking about a troop camping trip or a service unit day camp?  Volunteers need to complete GSKH Outdoor Leadership training before facilitating outdoor activities with girls.  There are fees assessed for Outdoor Leadership courses to cover the costs of food, supplies, and facilities. Senior and Ambassador Girl Scouts may also attend Outdoor Leadership courses.

◊ Outdoor Leadership Basics 100: Self-Directed Study Course

Successful completion of this course will allow you to begin the outdoor experience. You may take troops or groups out for the day to go hike, have a picnic, and get a taste of outdoor fun. (You will NOT be approved for building fires or teaching girls about handling camp tools until you have completed Outdoor Leadership 101.) Click here see self-directed course materials.

◊ Outdoor Leadership 101: Tent Camping, Cooking And Fires

By completing this course volunteers will be qualified to plan and have backyard campouts, host and attend day camps, and have a camping adventure within their own community or stay at any Girl Scouts of Kansas Heartland Camp property (with the exception of semi-primitive camp sites). Volunteers will also be able to lead cookouts and have campfires. This course is required for any outdoor cooking or fire building. For example – If you are having an event at a local park with girls and want to toast marshmallows for s’mores, you must have an Outdoor Leadership 101 (or equivalent) trained adult present. This course is a seven-hour, hands-on participation course where you will experience the demonstration of outdoor cooking methods and fire building as well as the procedures for pitching, striking and caring for tents. NOTE: There may be additional training that you may need in order to use certain Girl Scout properties. Please check with the specific camp’s regional office. Prerequisite – Outdoor Leadership 100

◊ Outdoor Leadership 201: Outdoor Semi-Primitive Camping

This overnight course is required for any overnight camping (tents, A-frames, rustic cabins, etc.) outside your community. Semi-Primitive camping includes any camping area that does not have one or all of the following: outside city limits; no potable water; primitive or no toilet facilities; no shelter in the immediate area. Additional outdoor skills and activities that can be added to the girl program are included in this workshop. Outdoor Leadership 201 may be held in conjunction with 101. Prerequisites: Outdoor Leadership 100 and Outdoor Leadership 101

◊ Outdoor Leadership 301: Backpacking

Learn and practice skills necessary to take a group of girls on a backpacking trip; learn about and experience Leave No Trace camping; cook on backpacking stove; properly pack, adjust and carry a backpack.  Prerequisites: Outdoor Leadership 100, 101, 201

◊ Basic Water Rescue/ Small Craft Safety – Canoe

This course will provide instruction and experience in flatwater canoe skills; emphasizing safety, flat water travel techniques and proper equipment selection.  Individuals will learn how to prevent and respond to aquatic emergencies on flat water with canoes, and learn how to protect themselves while assisting others.  After completion of this course, participants will be certified in Basic Water Rescue/ Small Craft Safety – Canoe through the American Red Cross, and will meet the requirements of the Safety Activity Checkpoints for flat-water canoeing (except at Starwoods Outdoor Center, which requires a certified instructor as part of their American Camping Association accreditation).                        

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3. First-Aid and CPR

To ensure the safety and well-being of all girls, Girl Scouts of Kansas Heartland requires troops to be accompanied by someone currently certified in First Aid and CPR for any activity or trip beyond their regular meeting site, any physically demanding activity and all overnight trips. If a registered adult with the troop is a nurse (RN/LPN), a certified emergency medical technician, or a doctor, they can serve as the troop’s “First Aider.” Otherwise, a troop leader or other registered adult will need to become certified, through a GSKH course or another certifying organization. If you are certified through another organization, please submit proof of certification and expiration information to the Volunteer Services department of your regional office. 

Girl Scouts of Kansas Heartland provides several scheduled National Safety Council (NSC) First Aid and CPR certification courses throughout the year to accommodate our volunteers. All NSC First Aid and CPR courses offered by Girl Scouts of Kansas Heartland have a $20 per participant charge to cover material costs. 

The NSC First Aid and CPR course covers the skills needed to successfully perform First Aid and CPR, and provides a two-year certification.  We offer both a blended learning course, which includes a home-study DVD and book, followed by skills and written testing with a certified instructor; or an all-day course with a certified instructor.

Senior and Ambassador Girl Scouts may also attend adult First Aid & CPR blended learning courses. Cadettes may attend the full-day First Aid & CPR courses. Sessions just for girls can be scheduled as needed.
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4. Enrichment Courses

Girl Scouts of Kansas Heartland is pleased to offer many enrichment courses to support our volunteers and their unique interests.  These courses can be scheduled in each region pending facilitator availability.  Enrichment courses include, but are not limited to, the following:

◊ 3 Processes – 1 Powerful Program

This exciting NEW course for GS volunteers is all about using the Girl Scout program to develop leadership skills in girls.

◊ Promise in Action

Adult volunteers will learn how to lead Brownie and Junior Girl Scouts to a greater understanding of each element of the Girl Scout Promise and Law using games and activities.

◊ Take Action

Volunteers will develop a greater understanding of what a “Take Action” project consists of and learn how to help girls in all grade levels of Girl Scouting identify the needs in their communities, develop a “take action” plan and carry it out from start to finish!

◊ Bridging and Ceremonies

Learn the basic elements of helping girls plan meaningful and memorable ceremonies for all types of Girl Scout milestones.  Flag Etiquette and flag ceremonies are included.

◊ Let’s Sing

A fun-filled workshop to learn Girl Scout songs.

◊ Building a Girl-Led Troop

This course for troop volunteers focuses on the Girl-Led element of the Girl Scout Leadership Experience.

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5. Leadership Conferences

Girl Scout Leadership Conferences are special events held in different regions of the council, where girl and adults both focus on their own leadership development. You’ll find workshops, speakers, and activities unique for Girl Scouts, and have an opportunity to network with your peers. Find out about the 2013-14 Leadership Conferences here!
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6. Scheduling and Logistics

To find out about upcoming courses, please visit our activities and trainings calendar.  Many of our learning opportunities are regularly scheduled, months in advance.

We can also work with volunteers in each area to deliver learning opportunities on an as-needed basis.  Courses are scheduled through your Service Unit’s Volunteer Leadership Development Organizer, or through the council Volunteer Services Staff.

Volunteers looking to schedule a particular learning opportunity in your area can request that a course be scheduling by completing these steps:

  1. Have a minimum of five participants who will attend the course.
  2. Choose several dates that would be convenient for your group.
  3. Secure the location, including key pick-up and return, and arrange for pickup of equipment (if needed).
  4. Complete the Adult Development Request form and submit it to the Volunteer Services department a minimum of 3 week before your requested date.  Please email the form to Jennifer Amrein at jamrein@gskh.org.
  5. Volunteer Services will work with you to set up online registration for the training and ensure that the minimum number of participants register before the deadline.

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7. Waiver of Learning Requirements

Volunteers may apply for a waiver if they have completed a comparable Girl Scout course in another Girl Scout council.

  • Please list the courses you have taken, date, and place, along with the council name, phone number, and contact person.
  • Submit your request by email to the Volunteer Services department of your regional office.
  • Applicants will receive written verification of the action taken regarding their requests.

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