New Adult Volunteers – Form & Process


All adults (anyone who aged 18+) who volunteer to assist Scouting whether working with young people or in an administration role must have:

  • their details added to Compass. The Adult Information form can be downloaded here
  • a valid Enhanced DBS issued through Scouting. A DBS whether Enhanced or not but issued to another organisation will not be accepted.
  • Note. No DBS is required for those who work with young people outside of “Regulated Activity” as defined by UK legislation. In practise this means anyone helping out less than once a month eg those on a termly parent helper rota. Also these roles do not need to be recorded on Compass. (verified by Gilwell 28/7/16)


  • No role which involves regular contact with young people may be commenced until DBS clearance has been received.
  • A DBS is required for anyone eg a parent who attends an overnight event such as a family camp. This includes sleepovers in a scout hut or elsewhere.
  • From 2016 ALL members of the Group Executive Committee (whether parents or others) need to hold an Enhanced DBS. (The applicable date is as from the 2016 AGM for each Group.)
  • Students attending further education in Bristol who are existing members of the Scout Association and whose primary role remains as their home group, must still have their additional role registered on Compass and their DBS status verified. Referral should be made to the District Appointments Secretary for this to be arranged.

Process Summary

  1. GSL agrees role with and support mechanism with adult.
  2. GSL supplies form Adult Information (link as above) and checks for completion.
  3. GSL adds volunteer to Compass.
    1. Should the GSL not have access to Compass the form should be submitted to the District Appointments Secretary (link to email). The form can be completed on line and emailed.
  4. GSL undertakes DBS online verification with the volunteer.
    1. Should the GSL not have access to the Atlantic online DBS system please notify the District Appointments Secretary who will arrange to meet up with the volunteer to undertake the online DBS. This usually takes about 15 minutes.
    2. In very rare circumstances an adult may not have sufficient evidence to enable online submission for the DBS. A paper process is available via Gilwell –please refer to the District Appointments Secretary for advice.
  5. For appointments which require references:
    • The new version of Compass does enable GSLs to call for references but the system is very impersonal and any reply would go back to the GSL not the District Appointment’s Secretary. GSLs may wish to issue their own covering email when a calling for a reference but do ensure that the reference is forwarded to the District Appointments Secretary.
    • If required the District Appointment’s Secretary can call for references and will do so where she has submitted the online DBS.  
  6. DBS approval times vary but are usually issued within 2-3 weeks. If the applicant has lived in the London area recently then the process time is considerably longer –please refer to the District Appointments Secretary for information.  The adult will receive their paper copy of the DBS direct whilst an electronic notification is sent to the District Appointments Secretary and the GSL.
  7. In the event of an adverse DBS the only person notified will be the DC.
  8. Adults wishing to work directly with young people as Sectional Assistants; Assistant Leaders; Leaders or as part of the District Team are also required to attend an interview with the Appointments Panel. The Panel consists of both uniform and non-uniformed  members of the District whose job it is to chat through the proposed appointment with the applicant. Panel meetings are held monthly with a break over the summer period.
    • Adults needing to attend panel as part of the Appointments process should not be delayed simply because references are outstanding.
    • Attendees should ideally have completed Training modules 1 and 3 (online) and be aware as to who is to be their TA before attending Panel.
  9. An applicant may start working in their role immediately after the DBS clearance is received but the appointment is not verified until they have met with the panel and it has been approved by the DC.

Key Issues

  • GSLs are expected to have fully discussed the training and time commitments required for each role from the outset.
  • Roles which require full Woodbadge Training should be discussed in detail and ideally the applicant will have met their Personal Training Advisor prior to the Panel meeting. Support can be obtained from the ADC Leader Training. (add email link)
  • A DBS lasts for 5 years and it is the GSLs responsibility to ensure that a DBS renewal is applied for before then. An automatic reminder system has been built into Compass which gives advance notification both to the individual and their line manager (eg GSL;DESC etc). It is therefore vital that each individual’s Compass record is updated should there be a change of email as well as address etc.
  • Network members aged 18-25 do not require a DBS unless they also hold a Leadership role or are intending to camp with scouts under age 18.
  • Forms AA; OH and Change of Role are no longer in use.