Updates to getting consent from parents or carers

We've updated our new starter and consent forms, as well as our guidance on getting parent or carer consent

03 July 2024

In January, new versions of our new starter forms and information and consent forms were released.  

These changes meant that you could take your unit out into the local area during your unit meetings without needing to use an information and consent form. This only applied if parents and carers had signed this latest version of the new starter form, and you started and ended the activity at your usual unit meeting place.  

Thank you for sending in your feedback about the new forms and the updated guidance. This has been very helpful and showed that, for some volunteers, the new guidance didn’t make a meaningful change to the level of unit admin required when taking girls out on local adventures.  

Some volunteers experienced formatting problems when using the new forms, especially on mobile devices. Many volunteers would like to use an online process to get consent for events.  

  • We’ve updated the guidance on getting parent or carer consent. 
  • We’ve made updates to the forms. 
  • Soon you’ll be able to get parental consent for events using GO. 

Updating the guidance on getting parent or carer consent 

We’ve updated our guidance so that volunteers can start and/or end unit meetings in the local area to your unit meeting place without needing to use an information and consent form. Make sure parents and carers of girls in your unit have signed the December 2023 or later version of our new starter forms or the one-page consent for activities local to the unit meeting place. You still need to let parents and carers know about your plans ahead of time. Make sure to read the getting parent or carer consent guidance for all the information you need. 

This change means volunteers can make use of usual unit meeting times to have fun adventures in your local area without additional unit admin. 

Updates to the new starter forms and information and consent forms 

Thank you for letting us know when you’ve experienced problems using the new starter forms and information and consent forms. The forms have been updated using your feedback, making small improvements to make them easier to use. Make sure to download the latest versions of the new starter forms from the forms and resource library. 

Top tips 

When parents or carers download the PDF versions of the forms on their mobiles and fill them out using their mobile’s default PDF reader, this can cause problems when you receive the form back. The text on the form can appear duplicated or doesn’t appear at all. 

The best way to avoid this problem is to make sure everyone is using Adobe Reader to fill out our forms. The Adobe Reader app is free to download on your desktop and on mobile devices. As a volunteer, if you populate the form in Adobe Reader and then ask parents or carers to fill it out on the Adobe Reader app for mobile or desktop, there shouldn’t be an issue with the text. 

Downloading the Poppins font on your device also helps with viewing the forms. You can find out how to do this in the guidance on using our brand. 

Coming soon: parental consent for unit events and activities on GO 

Many volunteers would like an online option for getting parental consent for events and activities. For volunteers who’d like to get consent in this way, this process will be added to GO later this month. Keep an eye on the GO release notes page and help files for more updates. 

You’ll be able to use GO to get parental consent for activities, events and residential trips for Rainbow, Brownie and Guide unit-level events. 

Unfortunately, you won't be able to use GO to collect parental consent for Rangers or young volunteers. This is because their parents or carers aren’t linked to their GO record.