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Recruiting adults

Right people right roles...

What we know about volunteering
From our research we know that:
  • there are lots of people who can help. Most adults volunteering in Groups and sections are parents and/ or former youth members.
  • ‘lack of time’ is the main reason that people don’t volunteer.
  • volunteers leave because their role often requires more commitment than they initially expected or agreed to.
What we know about volunteering for Scouting
People think that:
  • Scouting is just for boys
  • they will only work with young people
  • they need practical skills related to camping and outdoor activities
  • volunteers aren’t needed because Scouting is so organised.

What can we do? 

To successfully recruit more adult volunteers your Scout Group must be seen as:

  • open and welcoming: it should be a ‘place of doors,
    not a place of walls’

  • an energetic place, full of enthusiastic people and full of activity

  • making a major contribution to the community

  • well organised where people’s time is productive

  • well managed and safe (especially for young people)

  • part of a huge, vibrant and successful organisation.

As adults in Scouting, we all have a role to play in the recruitment of more volunteers. We need to:

  • take into account the motivations, skills and availability of the individual concerned, and tailor the role accordingly
  • promote the learning opportunities available – highlight the fact that volunteers can develop new skills
  • let people know that their help is needed
  • engage parents and let them see what Scouting is all about
  • support and develop Young Leaders
  • make people aware of the range of volunteering opportunities available
  • accept that they may not want to become a leader straight away
  • provide them with support
  • make changes when people are unhappy with what they’ve been asked to do, or want a change.

Flexibility is the key to recruiting and retaining volunteers, not just when they join, but throughout their time in Scouting.

Finding the right role for the right person

Asking the right questions can ensure that your volunteers are happy in the long term. Examples include:

  1. Do you know about the variety of roles available in Scouting? (List some of the options.)
  2. Do any of these options appeal to you?
  3. Would you prefer to work with young people or with other adults?
  4. Do you have any hobbies?
  5. Would you like to use your existing skills or would you like to do something completely different?
  6. How much time would you like to spend volunteering?
  7. Is there anything you don’t want to do

The following pages will provide you with lots of ideas, tips and tricks to successfully recruit adults for your Scout Group.


Click here to download our adult recruitment toolkit and start planning for your recruitment needs.