Woodcraft Tool Box

YHA Partner Organisations

Woodcraft Folk has a long history with the Youth Hostel Association and membership of the Woodcraft Folk also means that you can become an affiliate member of the Youth Hostel Association.

Both organisations share a common history of self help, working class people wanting to get away from the cities and giving young people the change to explore the wilderness.

Justine’s story: starting a new Woodcraft group in the Midlands

Justine, Lucy and Jessica started Bournville Elfins after Jessica completed Forest Schools training and wanted to do something complementary. Justine says:

“Although we had never heard of Woodcraft Folk, we jumped at the chance! We all came from different areas and so sat down with a map and looked at where we could all get to by 5.45pm on a Wednesday and Bournville came out tops!

How to manage behaviour at group nights

Check out the managing behaviour web area for advice, guidance, webinars and session plans

Back to FAQs for new groups.


How groups fit into the wider movement

Every Woodcraft Folk group is a recognised branch of the UK charity. Most groups belong to a District, which operate across a geographical area (possibly county, borough or city-wide) supporting a network of groups. Visit the online map to see where Woodcraft groups are.

Do I need to be trained in First Aid?

No, it is not a requirement that all members are trained in First Aid, but you should have someone responsible for administering first aid at each regular group night. When budgetting for your group or district, we recommend planning to invest in first aid training for some of your leaders, especially if you are planning a camp. 

When writing your risk assesment for each activity you run, consider the potential risks and provide appropriate cover for those circumstances. For example, if you are meeting in a city, where ambluance response times are 5 minutes and under, there will be less demand for extensive first aid knowledge than if you were going on a trek in a rural upland area. 

Child protection for new groups

Woodcraft Folk have a Safeguarding Policy, which you should read and follow. You can read it here along with other useful documents relating to safeguarding: www.woodcraft.org.uk/safeguarding.

How much to pay for a group venue?

This depends largely on how many children attend or you are hoping will attend your group. Woodcraft groups pay for their rent out of the weekly subscriptions (subs) paid by the children so you need to make sure that the price reflects what you think you can afford. 

How to find a good venue

Well firstly, what makes a good venue? It should be somewhere nearby to where you are recruiting members from, ideally with public transport links. Preferably it should be able to be reached without having to cross busy roads, walk down dark alleyways etc. It should be in a good state of repair (i.e. no dodgy wiring etc) and accessible to those in wheelchairs. A decent-sized hall makes playing games much easier and increases the scope of the activities you can run. You can access the 'Good Venue Checklist' here.

How much should each group member pay?

As a general rule of thumb, groups normally charge weekly subs of between £1 and £2.50 in order to cover the cost of running the group (rent and materials). The amount you charge should take in to account the situation of the kids and their families - most groups are prepared to help out those who are less well off, but most will still ask for people to pay as much of the weekly sub as they can.

How do I get a DBS?

All volunteers who regularly attend a group (more than once a month), or participate in residential activities, are required to complete a Disclosure and Barring Service Disclosure, and become a full member of Woodcraft Folk. DBS forms can be completed online at woodcraft.org.uk/dbs-online

Please complete membership before applying for a DBS online.  

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