How to arrange home hospitality safely in the UK and abroad
Host other guiding groups - here and abroad
At jamborees and other international events in the UK and abroad, guiding groups often need a place to stay. Where possible, the whole group should stay together, for example in a hall, school or campsite, so girls have a great experience in a supervised, safe environment.
If this is not possible, you can arrange home hospitality (HoHo), where girls stay with the families of guiding or Scouting members from the area they are visiting and live as part of the family.
For home hospitality both within the UK and abroad, follow these guidelines.
- Host adults and the parents of the girls who are staying with them must have the opportunity to communicate prior to the event.
- At least two girls from the visiting group must be accommodated in each house.
- Girls from the visiting group must have separate sleeping areas from the rest of the family.
- All leaders, both hosts and visitors, must hold the contact details for each home and each girl.
- Host families must have the contact details for the leaders of the visiting girls.
- Girls from the visiting group and hosts must be able to contact the visiting leader at all times, and girls should contact her regularly. A daily check-in is advised.
- A programme of activities for the accommodation period must be circulated, so the host family are aware of exactly when they will need to be responsible for the girls.
- If the home hospitality stay is for three nights or more, a social event for all the girls, hosts and leaders should be organised mid-way through the accommodation period. This will give the leaders, girls and hosts an opportunity to meet each other and raise any issues or problems.
Insurance - Girls' personal possessions should be insured under their travel insurance policy. Any damage to the home caused by the girl will not be covered by Girlguiding insurance. Host families should notify their house insurer that they will be welcoming visitors for a short period of time.
For home hospitality within the UK
- All host residents (the family living in the house) aged 18 or over must have completed the Recruitment and vetting process as a district/division/county helper and undertake a criminal records check.
- All host residents (the family living in the house) aged 18 or over must have read and signed the Girlguiding Safeguarding policy.
For home hospitality outside of the UK
- All aspects of travelling abroad regulations should be followed.
- The Girlguiding group must liaise with the host guiding Association while planning their trip, to make sure all host residents (the family living in the house) aged 18 or over have completed local safeguarding procedures, such as criminal record checks (if they exist in the area being visited).
- If possible, leaders should assess a host residence before girls stay there.
- A risk assessment should be completed, including an alternative plan in case a girl needs to be re-housed during the accommodation period.
If you have any questions or need further information, please contact [email protected]