To register as a merit badge counselor in the Virginia Headwaters Council, you must complete the following:
- BSA Adult Application Merit badge counselors register at no fee, using the Boy Scouts of America’s standard adult registration form with position code 42 Merit Badge Counselor (Adult Application ). A BSA Adult Application is required by National even if you are already registered with BSA. Please use the new form with the current background check release information. If you are already registered, include your member number on the application in the blank area under your last name. Merit badge counselor is a council and district position so the adult application does not need a unit leader or COR signature; the council advancement committee provides the approval signature.
- Merit Badge Counselor Information form https://filestore.scouting.org/filestore/pdf/34405.pdf A number of merit badges involve activities that are restricted or require certification or special training for those supervising these activities. See the Guide to Advancement, topic 188.8.131.52, Qualifications of Counselors. “Merit badge counselors may personally meet these required qualifications, or they may use others so qualified. Additionally, the BSA Guide to Safe Scouting has specific requirements and procedures for shooting sports and for aquatics, winter, and other activities. These policies apply to all BSA activities, including merit badge instruction. For other merit badges where specific BSA requirements do not exist, counselors should have sufficient depth of knowledge and experience to understand how to safely present the material.”
- YPT certificate The VAHC requires YPT training to be valid for at least 1 year when applying. If YPT lapses, you are automatically dropped from the list of approved merit badge counselors. You can take your YPT at my.scouting.org.
- Merit Badge Counselor training is required by the VAHC and is available at my.scouting.org. Please submit your certificate or training record with your application.
The Merit Badge Counselor information form and BSA Adult Application must be approved by the VAHC Advancement Committee. Please submit all required forms, certificates and training records to your District Advancement Chair or the Council Advancement Chair for processing. Forms may be emailed if encrypted. If you prefer to mail your forms, contact the appropriate District or Council member of the VAHC Advancement Committee for their address.
Mountain Valley District Advancement Chair
David Kenee, firstname.lastname@example.org
Monticello District Advancement Chair
Mabel Beirne, email@example.com
Virginia Headwaters Council Advancement Chair
Marc Monfalcone, firstname.lastname@example.org
Scouts: Before starting a merit badge, discuss it with your scout leader. Your scout leader will connect you to your merit badge counselor through ScoutBook. If your unit does not use ScoutBook, you will need to start a Blue Card (available from your scout leader). Since the introduction of Scoutbook, the BSA has offered Scouts two ways of recording merit badge requirement completion: The Blue Card and Scoutbook. Both remain authorized methods to record merit badge work. Scoutbook is a part of the BSA Internet Advancement system, which means that entering an advancement record in Scoutbook is the same as entering it in Internet Advancement. Anyone with a BSA member ID automatically has access to a Scoutbook account through their my.scouting account.
Scoutmasters: The most up to date roster of merit badge counselors is in ScoutBook. The VAHC has uploaded the council merit badge counselor list into Scoutbook, so troops will no longer be able to add a Merit Badge Counselor to their troop roster. However troops will still be able to invite Merit Badge Counselors to work with their Scouts from the Merit Badge Counselor List in Scoutbook. For help with ScoutBook, visit https://help.scoutbook.com/knowledge-base/scoutbook-merit-badge-counselor-guide/ .