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Peer Leadership and Developing Leadership in Young People

Developing leadership skills in young people has always been and continues to be an important part of Scouting. Baden Powell on his experimental camp to Brownsea Island appointed Patrol Leaders to lead and support the running of the camp. In Scouting today we want to continue to encourage the development of young people’s leadership skills in a safe and supportive environment. From Beavers to Network, there is always a way that young people can be supported to develop and grow.

Beaver Scouts

As the youngest Scouting section, Beavers is the start of a young person’s journey to develop leadership skills and this will likely be their first opportunity to be a leader. There is no set name for peer leadership in Beavers and Colonies can choose whatever works best for them. Some ideas of names used by Colonies are Lodge Leaders, Lodge Friends and Junior Leaders.

For more information on peer leadership in Beavers, please click here.

Cub Scouts

Young people who take on a peer leadership role in Cub Scouts are called Sixers and Seconders. Sixers lead the Six and Seconders support the Sixer.

For more information on Sixers and Seconders in Cubs, please click here.


Scouts who take on leadership responsibilities for their Patrol are called Patrol Leaders and Assistant Patrol Leaders. Patrol Leaders and Assistant Patrol Leaders take an active part in helping to shape their Programme. Some Troops also have Senior Patrol Leaders who take on additional leadership opportunities.
For more information on peer leadership in the Scout section, please click here.

Explorer Scouts

Explorers are the fourth section in the Scout movement. By the time a young person reaches Explorers, it is expected that they take an active and leading role in planning their own Programme and activities.
Explorers also develop their leadership skills through the Young Leader’s scheme. The Young Leader’s Scheme offers Explorer Scout Young Leaders the opportunity to volunteer in a Beaver Colony, Cub Pack or Scout Troop.

For more information on developing leadership in the Explorer section, please click here.

Scout Network

Network members can develop their leadership skills further by leading a team to deliver a Network project or event. They can also further develop the skills they have gained through Scouting by working towards a permit for an adventurous activity. This gives Network members the chance to lead others, whilst giving opportunities to other members in Scouting to experience adventurous activities.

For more information on developing leadership in Scout Network, please click here.

Young people first: Safeguarding and Safety in Scouting

Wherever we go and whatever we do, we put young people’s safety and wellbeing first. Here's how.