Youth Scotland membership eligibility criteria checklist

Youth Scotland membership eligibility criteria checklist.

Young people and youth workers hold pen and paper, ready to answer a question

Please refer to the checklist below which highlights the main important eligibility criteria for groups to follow in order to become a Youth Scotland Member.

To become a full member of Youth Scotland you should be able to demonstrate that you are delivering community-based youth work where:

Young people choose to participate

The young person takes part voluntarily. She/ he chooses to be involved, not least because they want to relax, meet friends and have fun. The young person decides whether to engage or to walk away.

The work must build from where young people are

Youth Work operates on young people’s own personal and recreational territory – within both their geographic and interest communities. The young person’s life experience is respected and forms the basis for shaping the agenda in negotiation with peers and youth workers.

Youth Work recognises the young person and the youth worker as partners in a learning process

The young person is recognised as an active partner who can, and should, have opportunities and resources to shape their lives. The relationship and dialogue between the young person and youth worker is central to the learning process


All Youth Scotland Members must run their groups in Scotland.

Not for Profit

Youth Scotland membership is only open to groups that are not for profit.

Governance and your youth group

Youth Scotland ask that all member groups must have appropriate governance in place. Youth Scotland member groups should be managed effectively in order to meet the quality standards required of members. We ask several questions about how members are constituted, managed and staffed to assess if members are meeting these quality standards. We ask you to indicate whether you have a written constitution and to indicate if you are a Charity; OSCR Registered; SCIO; CIC; Social Enterprise; Part of a larger organization.

Policy and Procedures

The Youth Scotland Network maintains quality standards for membership to develop and support a safe environment for young people. All groups that are members of Youth Scotland must agree to have the following policies and procedures in place, or work with support from the Youth Scotland Network to put these policies and procedures in place:

  • Child Protection
  • Health and Safety

Guidance and templates for these and other important policies can be found in our Youth Work Essentials section  with a section on safeguarding and on Health and Safety

Youth Scotland/Area associations are also able to provide additional support and guidance to put these policies in place.  We ask you to provide a contact name of your Child Protection Officer.

PVG Scheme

All groups must have a system in place for PVG checks. Members can also access the PVG Scheme through the Youth Scotland Network – checks are free for volunteers in the voluntary sector – just tick the box indicating you would like more information about registering for PVG when you apply.  We ask you to provide the name of your PVG Main Contact.


All groups are required to have appropriate insurance in place (either via Youth Scotland or another provider).   There are a number of membership and insurance options, depending on the needs of your group. Employers Liability insurance is provided as part of the membership and insurance package. If your group employs its own staff, please tell us your Employer PAYE Reference Number, as this is required by the insurance providers.

NB It is worth stating that any existing insurance you have may not cover the activities common to youth work – see our guide to insurance in Magnet Magazine for details.

Payment for Membership

Payment for membership only or membership and insurance can be made by cheque or bank transfer.

More Information

Youth Scotland maintain a one-stop shop of core information about youth work practice, starting a youth group to much, much more. Visit Youth Work Essentials for more information.