Who are Occasional Helpers?
Occasional Helpers are adult volunteers who are not taking on a formal appointment but wish to occasionally help out and due to the nature of that support are required to complete a Disclosure Check (i.e help out more than once per month, assist with overnight activities (a residential experience or overnight hike) and/or could have unsupervised access to young people).
How do they Differ from Section Assistants ?
The role of Section Assistant is a formal appointment in The Scout Association. Section Assistants are adult volunteers who assist the Section Leaders and Assistant Section Leaders in delivering the programme to young people in Scouting. They may support one section, or different sections within a Group depending on where their help is needed.
What’s the difference?
Section Assistants are required to be Full or Associate Members of The Scout Association and so receive a number of benefits which are not available to Occasional Helpers, including:
- Regular communications through Scouting magazine and Scouting Plus
- Personal Accident and Medical Expenses Insurance. (For more information, please call Unity (Scout Insurance Services) on 0845 0945 703.) – This is however provided by the Group
- Training to support them in their role
- Recognition for their service, counting towards long-service awards.
Section Leaders should ensure parents and occasional helpers who are involved more than once a month are aware of the appointment opportunities available to them. The outline volunteer opportunity for a Section Assistant can be viewed here.