Providing a warm welcome

Once you have the right person to carry out a task or role the next step is a warm welcome and induction, which means helping them to become a part of your group.

But the hard work has just begun...  

It’s important that you make them feel welcome, valued and part of the team and by following a few simple steps you can.

As soon as possible run through the planned programme for the weeks ahead and provide an overview of the programme for the term. This is also a great opport-unity for you to talk to them about what you would like them to get involved with and this will help them settle in quicker if they know what to expect and it’s a chance to ask questions away from the noise and chaos of the meeting.


What is integration?

Integration is the next step after someone says yes. It is about welcoming them and getting them started in Scouting and moving forward. This involves:

  • Agreeing their role
  • providing information
  • meeting people
  • having a go

Welcome behavior

Whether your new adult is someone who has experience of scouting or not, it’s fair to say that having come through the door they’re now thinking ‘argh – there seem to be more young people here and they’re shouting and running around, I’m not sure I can do this.’

It’s crucial to act quickly at this point – a welcoming smile, an introduction to the leader team, a reminder of the programme and a cup of tea should help them relax.

During the first couple of weeks let them soak up the atmosphere and get used to how the meetings run. Make sure that they are getting involved with activities and learning the young people’s names; not standing on the sidelines.

Throw them in at the deep end and you’re in danger of scaring them off. Breaking them in gently will pay dividends as confidence grows and soon they’ll be able to run games and activities on their own.

Show you care

District meetings are the perfect opportunity to meet fellow leaders, swap ideas and realise the whole network of support available. When you feel its appropriate invite your new adult along.

As appropriate, talk about the importance of training and the different options they have for completing the necessary modules within time scales.

Demonstrate your group’s/unit's commitment to them by asking your Group Scout Leader/District Explorer Scout Commissioner to come to a meeting and invest them, in recognition of the important role they’ve undertaken.

And the end of all that, just four little words show that the time and effort you’ve put in has paid off – ‘see you next week.

Induction plans

It is important when someone agrees to take on a task or role that they are not then just left to get on with it. They need to be welcomed, and given the tools, support and contacts to help them get started. Put together a simple induction plan for all adults taking up new tasks or roles.

Things to consider including are:

  • who do they need to be introduced to?
  • who needs to know them and who do they need to know?
  • what information do they need to get started?
  • who will actively help support them in that early stage?
  • what resources do they need access to get started?
  • are there meetings they need to attend, who will take them the first time, do they know where the meetings are held?
  • who do they contact with questions or problems?

The induction plan should address these issues in a sensible timescale.

Who will take responsibility for supporting the volunteer?

  • To deal with any organisation and administration e.g. Information form, DBS Check, rotas!
  • To show the volunteer the ropes initially, including answering any questions they may have
  • To thank them for what they are doing
  • To help them understand the purpose of the task and to continue to see its importance
  • Who will be the main contact if there are any suggestions or problems

Take a look at these great tools to help you...

Our welcome journey guide for new adults using  the paper application route
First conversations
Keeping amazing volunteers


Time well spent...

Recent research, by the UK National Council of Voluntary Organisations (NCVO), suggests eight key elements that make-up a quality experience for volunteers.

The research strongly suggests that volunteering is shaped by a mix of factors within each element and no single factor or element will result in more people volunteering. But, a good mix of factors across the elements should help with better participation.

Our quality volunteer experience checker highlights these elements and factors and will help you identify things you can do to support your volunteers and promote to potential volunteers so they know that their time will be well spent.

Click here to download our quality volunteer  experience checker