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Purpose of the buddy system
- It is an effective way to help manage the safety of large groups.
- If a person is alone, no one may notice if they go missing or have trouble. With two or more together, someone will notice and be able to help.
- It reinforces the character development trait, provides responsibility, and promotes friendships.
How to do it properly
- Have at least one buddy or partner with you when on water or hiking. A buddy team may consist of three Scouts when necessary, if there is an odd number in a group. When hiking, a minimum group of 4 is required, split into pairs.
- Buddies should know each other and be comfortable together.
- Your buddy should be of similar age, ability (e.g. hiking or swimming ability) and maturity .
- Always know where your buddy is and stay close.
- If your buddy leaves the water, you should leave as well until you are both ready to return.
- Each buddy is responsible for the other.
- If your buddy is having a problem, you must alert the leaders in charge.
When swimming, the leader or lifeguard may blow their whistle for a buddy check. All pairs should raise each other's hands to show that buddies have not split apart.