Pros: great information
Safety-Wise is the Girl Scout book of safety rules. In my Council, it is given to every new leader. Each new leader must also go through a training where this book is reviewed so that it is certain that everyone understands the importance of all of the rules.
This book is broken into two main parts which is further broken down into 11 chapters. The first part is Safety and the Girl Scout Group and the second part is Girl Scout Program Standards and Activity Checkpoints.
Safety and the Girl Scout Group
This section of the book has 5 chapters
Responsibility for Safety This section talks about who is responsible for the safety of the girls in different instances. It talks about teaching girls to be safe so that they can be safe in a variety of situations, not just in Girl Scout activities.
Group Leadership -- This section gives information about terms that new leaders will be interested in reading about. It talks about the responsibilities of a Girl Scout Leader.
Group Planning and Budgeting -- By reading chapter 3, you will get ideas on planning out Girl Scout meetings and the order that most meetings will take on. You will learn the essential skills of planning a budget so that your troop can be financially able to do many activities.
Basic Safety Guidelines -- This is mostly common sense ideas about being safe with the group of Girl Scouts.
Planning Trips with Girl Scout This section includes guidance on how to plan all aspects of a Girl Scout trip including preparation, transportation, and insurance issues.
Girl Scout Program Standards and Activity Checkpoints.
Girl Scout Program Standards The 35 program stands that must be followed at all times are described here. It includes things like when and what you can sell as a fundraiser, service projects, and who can be a leader, just to name a few.
Activity Checkpoints This section lists activities that are high risk and must get approval before participating in as well as activities that are simply not permitted as part of Girl Scouting.
Camping Activities -- This section lists common camping activities such as backpacking and outdoor cooking and the safety measures that must be taken during these activities.
Land Sports -- Here you can read about land sports such as horseback riding and roller skating and the safety measures that must be taken during these activities.
Water Activities Here you can read about water activities such as kayaking and swimming and the safety measures that must be taken to participate in these activities.
Other Activities -- Any activity not listed in any of the above categories are listed here. This includes such activities such as using computers and hayrides. Again safety measures are listed for these too.
The appendix of this book gives many blank forms that may be needed by a Girl Scout leader such as blank permission slip forms that can be replicated and used for field trips. The glossary and index list term that are defined and the pages on which these topics can be found, respectively.
I have referred to this book many times. I have taken my Girl Scout troop on activities such as roller skating and hayrides and I looked up the safety measures that must be taken for each of these trips. I am currently planning a trip for my troop to go to the YMCA to go swimming and I had to look up the safety measures before I could even begin planning this trip for my girls. Thus, this book has come in handy on more than one occasion for me.
I think that this book is especially helpful for a new leader as they can look at the Program Standards section of the book and find out all the information they could ever need to know about Girl Scouting and the rules they must abide by. I was also helped by the section that defined a lot of Girl Scouting terms as I knew none of that when I first became a Girl Scout leader.
The index is very helpful if you have a question. I can simply go to the index with the topic I need to find information about and quickly find it. That has been helpful to me on more than one occasion and Im glad that it was included in this way.
I have not used the actual forms in the Safety Wise book since my Council has their own standard forms to use. I think that these forms are good for areas where the Girl Scout Council does not provide these forms for Leaders to use.
The fact that my Girl Scout Council gives this book to all new leaders for free tells me the importance they place on this book. They did not give out any other Leader Guides for free. This book has all of the most important things that a Girl Scout Leader needs to know and it should be read before any other source. I highly recommend that all Girl Scout Leaders have a copy of their book for their safety and the safety of the girls that they are in charge of. Even if the Girl Scout Council here did not give the book for free, I would have purchased it for my own use.