1st Response training

Training for all volunteers to give first aid and manage emergency situations

1st Response is Girlguiding's own first aid course

It will train you to provide first aid to members in emergencies - in or outside of your unit meeting place. The course was created specifically for members of Girlguiding and The Scout Association.

What will I learn?

  • Gain simple life-saving first aid skills that are relevant to your role.
  • Develop the confidence and skills required to cope with emergency and first aid situations.
  • Understand how to manage these emergencies.

See the full 1st Response syllabus for details of everything the course covers.

What you need to do

To fully complete the 1st Response training, you need to:

  • Attend a local training session
  • Complete the e-learning

Both parts of the training must be completed to be considered a Girlguiding first aider.

Training session

The 1st Response training session can be delivered either in-person or as a webinar. The training is six hours long and can be delivered in one day or split into three 2-hour sessions. These are run locally, so speak to your commissioner about booking onto a session.

If you do the training virtually, you will need to meet a trainer in-person to complete some practical elements. 

From 1 April, all training will follow one of the following three options:

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


The e-learning can be done before or after the training session. You can find the e-learning on our learning platform.

Start the e-learning

Begin the e-learning module on our learning platform.

Go to the platform

Covid-19 update

We encourage you to do all elements of 1st Response within three months of each other.

During the current Covid-19 restrictions, we understand that this won't always be possible and the virtual part of the course will not expire. The in-person skills checks with trainers can be done when the current restrictions ease and when individuals feel comfortable to run and attend these sessions.

Your 1st Response training will only be valid once all elements have been completed, including attending any in-person skills check and completing the e-learning.

The 'completed on' date in GO should be the date you attended the main six-hour training session or the date you attended the third of the three two-hour sessions. Your 1st Response training will expire three years from this date, not from the date you complete the practical skills session.


Who should take this course?

Everyone in a volunteer role with us is encouraged to complete 1st Response training. It's especially useful for commissioners, leaders, young leaders, unit helpers and district/division/county helpers. Rangers can do the course as part of their personal development.

Volunteers completing the Leadership qualification without a valid equivalent first aid qualification have to attend.

One person at every unit meeting must have a valid first aid qualification. Find out more about requirements for named first aiders in your unit.

If you already have a first aid qualification, you night not need to attend our 1st Response course. Find out what external first aid qualifications are accepted by Girlguiding as equivalent to 1st Response.

For some outdoor activity qualifications you will need to complete a 16 hour first aid course. See the individual pages for outdoor activities  for more details.

How long will it take?

  • E-learning: 10 to 15 minutes.
  • Training session: Six hours or three two-hour sessions.

Keeping your skills up to date

Your 1st Response training is valid for three years. You'll need to redo the full six hour training course and e-learning in order to make sure your training is up to date to keep all members safe. Six months before your training expires, you'll be sent a reminder so you can redo the course.

After you've done the training

Your GO record will show you’ve done it.

How much will it cost?

The cost of the course will vary from area to area and might be free in some places. You can claim these costs back from your unit.

Speak to your unit leader, commissioner, training adviser or Leadership qualification mentor for advice about paying for your course.

How do I apply?

If you're interested in attending a 1st Response training, speak to your unit leader, commissioner, training coordinator or Leadership qualification mentor, who will be able to let you know what upcoming training events are planned in your area. Trainings might be listed on your county or region's website.