Camping with a Girl Scout troop is an exciting adventure. Girls develop their teamwork skills through activities and meal preparation, learn to respect and appreciate the outdoors and grow in self-confidence and decision-making skills. Troops can camp on Council-owned property (Camp Cedarledge, Fiddlecreek or Tuckaho) or off Council-owned property (for example, at a state park).
GSEM camp training provides the knowledge and skills volunteers need to have to ensure a positive camping experience for themselves as well as the girls.
GSEM utilizes a blended learning approach for camp training. Volunteers can begin their learning experience at their convenience, using the online programs. The online training is supplemented by required face-to-face learning opportunities.
Frequently-Asked Questions Regarding Troop Camp Training
Course Prerequisites and Links to Online Courses
Additional online learning opportunities related to camping are available here.
Required Training for camping on Council-owned property
Beginning February 1, 2012: When overnight camping on Council-owned property, at least one adult accompanying a troop camping in a Council-owned camp unit must meet one of the following requirements:
- Camping Procedures in GSEM completed prior to February 1, 2012
- Troop Camp A or Troop Camp B license earned prior to February 1, 2012*
- Troop Camp A-Z license or a Troop Camp Fast Track license*
- Have successfully completed a Troop Camp Skills Challenge and have an approved Request for Waiver of Troop Camp Training: On Council-Owned Property*
- Be accompanied by a Troop Camp Mentor*
*Volunteers who meet these requirements are also qualified to camp off Council-owned property.
Beginning February 1, 2012: at least one adult accompanying a troop camping off Council-owned property must meet one of the following requirements:
- Troop Camp A or Troop Camp B license earned prior to February 1, 2012
- Troop Camp Fundamentals, A-Z, or Fast Track license
- Have successfully completed a Troop Camp Skills Challenge and have an approved Request for Waiver of Troop Camp Training: Off Council-Owned Property
- Be accompanied by a Troop Camp Mentor
Learning Opportunity Descriptions (See the Lead & Learn for more information.)
- Troop Camp A-Z provides a complete troop camp learning experience. This is the perfect opportunity for volunteers with little or no camping experience to learn all they need to know to have a safe and fun troop camp experience. Participants learn about troop camping by practicing all the skills they will need to work with girls during a troop camping experience. This course provides information on camping both on and off Council-owned property.
- “Troop Camp Awesome” is a version of Troop Camp A-Z during which adults can bring girls. The adults participate in Troop Camp A-Z while the girls experience fun camp activities. See A Girl Scout Summer for complete information on Troop Camp Awesome. Some online pre-course work is required.
- Troop Camp Fast Track is a one-day course that, with required pre-course work, covers the material in Troop Camp A-Z at a greatly accelerated pace. This course is intended for experienced campers who need to learn the “Girl Scout way.” Extensive pre-course work is required so that participants can cover all course objectives in one day. Registrants who do not correspond with the trainers and do not complete required pre-course work are not allowed to participate in the course. Participants must arrive with basic camping skills, including how to build a fire and tie basic knots and hitches.
- Troop Camp Fundamentals provides the same learning experience as Troop Camp A-Z but does not include information specific to GSEM camps. This course certifies participants to camp only off Council-owned property. Participants who complete this course and then wish to camp on Council-owned property must complete additional coursework.
- Standard Camp Unit Check-Out Procedures is an online program that acquaints participants with how to check out of a unit after a troop camp experience. This course prepares volunteers to work with a Camp Supervisor to ensure that the camps remain clean and well-maintained.
- Troop Camping 101 is an online program that provides basic information needed to camp. Participants learn which forms must be submitted to be approved to camp, which resources to use and essential information for keeping girls safe while camping.
- Troop Camping Information Packet Review is an online course that introduces participants to the wealth of information and tips contained within the Troop Camping Information Packet.
- Troop Camp Skills Challenge provides volunteers who wish to waiver out of Troop Camp Training with the opportunity to demonstrate their competence in basic camp skills, including building fires, tying knots, using knives and handling food safely.
- What’s at a GSEM Camp? Is an online course that shows participants what they can expect to find when they arrive at a GSEM camp. The program includes types of units at GSEM camps, pool and waterfront areas and other public use areas. This program helps volunteers prepare for a troop camp experience. This course is also offered face-to-face (see Lead & Learn for schedule).
Troop Leaders can elect to partner with a Troop Camp Mentor to meet the training requirement to camp on or off Council-owned property. Mentors are experienced licensed troop campers who work with the troop in advance of the camping experience to help prepare the girls and leaders, and then accompany the troop to camp. For more information on the Troop Camp Mentor program, contact an Adult Education Manager at the service center.
Volunteers who have a great deal of experience camping at Girl Scout camps, or have taken camp training through another youth-serving organization, can apply for a waiver. To be granted a waiver, participants must complete an application, secure a letter of reference, complete online course work and successfully complete a skills challenge.