1st response training resources

Train members to be confident and skilled at providing support in medical emergencies

1st response is our first aid training for Girlguiding members.

The 1st response training course has been developed in partnership with the Scouts and is recognised by both organisations.

Who can deliver 1st response?

To deliver 1st response, you must have:

  • A Girlguiding trainer qualification with module 4 1st response or an adult teaching or training qualification. See the accepted adult teaching or training qualifications for 1st response.
  • All trainers must have a full first aid certificate. A full first aid qualification is provided and accredited by an organisation or governing body like but not limited to; St John Ambulance, British Red Cross, British Canoeing, or the Football Association. The course must take at least 6 hours. 
  • Up-to-date first aid knowledge - you must be able to answer questions from participants.

If you're a doctor, nurse or other health care professional you'll need to provide evidence of a recent training such as BLS, ILS or ALS. Where an element of the 1st response syllabus isn't covered in your training you'll need to undertake the relevant 1st response session.

Scout trainers with recognised first aid experience can also deliver 1st response to Girlguiding members.

If you wish to use an external (non Girlguiding or Scout) trainer who meets the above criteria for first aid training then they'll be required to deliver an external course that meets our recognised prior learning (RPL) requirements.

If you're unable to find enough 1st response trainers, don't forget that there may be volunteers who fit the criteria in your area - so always ask your local team.

Delivering 1st response training

1st response consists of a 6-hour training course, split into 3 sessions and an e-learning which can be completed before or after the full training course.

The training course can be delivered as a full 6-hour course or it can be split into 3 x 2-hour sessions to allow for flexibility.

1st response can be delivered both in-person and virtually using an online platform. The training plans and PowerPoints are presented in a way to allow you to follow either format. 

The 3 sessions are:

Life support

  • Approach and assessment **
  • CPR for an adult **
  • CPR for a child **
  • Use of AED (automated external defibrillator) **
  • Choking *
  • Causes and level of unresponsiveness 
  • Recovery / safe airway position **

Please see our November 2022 update on training rescue breaths

Trauma and injury

  • Shock
  • Bleeding*
  • Fractures and sprains*
  • Ticks
  • Head injury
  • Dental incidents
  • Burns

Major illness

  • Asthma
  • Anaphylaxis*
  • Heart attack
  • Stroke
  • Seizures
  • Diabetes
  • Sepsis/Meningitis

Topics in this list marked with * can be delivered as either theory or practical methods. We recommend practical activities where possible.

Topics marked with ** must be demonstrated practically by the participants (although those who aren't able to do this may instruct others in doing the skill), and with a combination of trainer delivered, video and practical teaching methods to aid with learning.

All other items can be delivered in a theoretical way, delivered by a trainer or using video.


The 1st response e-learning will cover the following areas, which are specific to Girlguiding:

  • Planning and preparation – what you need to know about being a first aider in Girlguiding.
  • Responding to an accident, incident, injury or emergency as first aider in Girlguiding.
  • What happens after an accident, incident, or emergency.

From January 2021 we'll be removing the option of the 2-hour refresher training. The full 6-hour course will need to be completed every 3 years.

Training plans

It's important to download and follow the standard course plans below, rather than deliver your own version of the training. 

(Updated September 2023)

The following printable resources support activities within the 1st response course.

We encourage all trainers to check this page regularly for any updates to any of the resources and ensure you always have the most up to date version. 

1st response training and virtual online training

Organising virtual training should be managed through local guiding and trainers should deliver in their country/region. There won't be any centrally organised virtual 1st response training. 

  • Sessions must be delivered by 2 trainers. We recommend that 1 trainer is a recognised webinar trainer but this isn't mandatory. Webinar trainers who are also 1st response trainers are asked to co-deliver with another trainer as they would other webinar trainings. There are webinar trainers in every country/region and offices will be able to see them on GO.  
  • Keep group sizes small, in line with the usual group size for 1st response training. This allows trainers to check understanding throughout the session.
  • Use a platform such as Zoom to deliver the training - these sessions won't be delivered through our live webinar platform.

All training will need to follow one of the following three options:

  1. E-learning and a full, 6-hour day of in-person training.
  2. E-learning and three lots of 2-hour in-person training dates.
  3. E-learning and 3 lots of 2-hour sessions. Module 1 must be delivered in-person, modules 2 and 3 can continue to be delivered through the webinar format.