First Class Advancement Level

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Kite-shaped lime green badge with purple Scout fleur-de-lis in the centre
First Class advancement badge

The First Class Advancement Level allows Scouts to learn to be a Patrol Leader by providing many leadership opportunities, such as planning and organising camps, hikes, and community service projects. Scouts learn more leadership skills compared to Discoverer.

Membership Traveller Discoverer First Class Springbok
“I have just joined the Troop”
Learn about the Scout Promise and Law, and Scouting background.
“I am Learning to be a Scout”
Learn what it means to be a Scout, and learn new skills.
“I am Learning to be an APL”
Be involved with your Patrol and Troop, sharpen your Scouting Skills.
“I am Learning to be a PL
Become a well-rounded Scout and citizen.
“I am a Leader of Scouts!”
Lead your Patrol and Troop on a number of projects that challenge you.


Red theme badge with blue compass
Adventure theme badge for the First Class advancement

Map Work

  1. Plan and run a training exercise for at least three younger Scouts on three aspects of mapping skills, as agreed upon by your Troop Scouter.


  1. Plan and take your patrol on an expedition which is a hike / walk / non-motorised form of transport expedition of at least 20km (or equivalent). This expedition must be over two days and have an overnight component.
    Write a report of a minimum of ten pages that will be submitted within three weeks after completion of the expedition to your Scouter.

Navigation Skills

  1. Complete one of the following interest badges:
    1. Advanced Navigation
    2. Air Navigator
    3. Charting
    4. Guide
    5. Mapping
    6. Voyager

Safety awareness

Red theme badge with fire extinguisher, telephone and life buoy
Safety theme badge for the First Class advancement

In the community

  1. Research one of the following scenarios and, after discussion with your Scouter, prepare an imaginative training exercise designed to provide your Patrol members with practical advice on how to survive a scenario with the least risk of harm from the list. Run the exercise and discuss the results with your Scouter:
    1. A hijacking;
    2. A home intrusion;
    3. An armed robbery;
    4. A gang battle;
    5. Any other similar topic approved by your Scouter.

At Home

  1. Lead a discussion in your patrol on abuse and bullying at school or on the internet including how to protect younger Scouts or friends from abuse.

Self Defence

  1. Learn some basic self-preservation techniques/ strategies and train your Patrol in these self-preservation strategies/ techniques.
    Earn the Master-at-Arms badge.

Living outdoors

Red theme badge with tent and pine trees
Living Outdoors theme badge for the First Class advancement

Outdoor Skills

  1. Earn one of these Interest badges:
    1. Air Meteorologist
    2. Astronomer
    3. Camp Quartermaster
    4. Charting
    5. Forester
    6. Hike Leader
    7. Ornithologist
    8. Survival
    9. Voyager
    10. Water Biologist
    11. Wave Rider
    12. Weatherman
    13. Woodcraftsman


  1. Plan and run an overnight camp for at least three younger Scouts away from your Troop meeting place within the limits of your equipment.


  1. Be able to explain to younger Scouts the importance of conserving wood resources by building and demonstrating the successful use of two of the following:
    1. Hay box or wonder box,
    2. Reflector oven,
    3. Solar box,
    4. Conservation wood stove,
    5. Camp fridge,
    6. Solar water heater for showers,
    7. Solar water sterilizer,
    8. Similar device (approved by your Troop Scouter).
  2. Lead your Patrol in planning, cooking and serving a three-course hot meal to at least six people including a guest who will be your examiner. The meal must be cooked from raw ingredients and cooked on an open fire. Demonstrate an understanding of the essential components of a balanced and healthy diet and explain how your meal meets these criteria.


Red theme badge with six people standing in a circle
Community theme badge for the First Class advancement

Community Service

  1. Plan and run a community project. Spend at least 10 hours over at least one month by yourself or with your Patrol in meeting this need. These may include one of the following or another project approved by your Scouter:
    1. Caring for a sick person (e.g. doing the shopping and mowing the grass).
    2. Helping at an old age or children's home.
    3. Helping prepare a food garden.
    4. Helping younger children who are disadvantaged or who have disabilities with reading or homework (or other ongoing activities).

Movement Service

  1. Complete one of the following or a similar event approved by your Scouter:
    1. Attain the Cub Instructor badge or Meerkat Instructor badge.
    2. Recruit two new Meerkats, Cubs or Scouts.
    3. Organise and run a recruitment drive or Scout marketing event.
    4. Be a full time staff member of a recognised PLTU course, with the approval of the Course Director for that course. This option is normally for those that have attended a PLTU course themselves as a participant.

Environmental Service

  1. Give a presentation to your Troop on a National or International wildlife / environmental agency that has branches in South Africa. Discuss one of their local projects and how Scouts could get involved with environmental service.

Scout Skills

Red theme badge with brown toolbox
Skills theme badge for the First Class advancement

First Aid

  1. Complete the First Aid Interest badge.

Skills Set

  1. Complete a second Interest badge or an Interest badge from the Skills set obtained in the Traveller section:
    1. Air Glider
    2. Air Traffic Controller
    3. Boatman
    4. Canoeist
    5. Cook
    6. Food for Life (Silver)
    7. Handyman
    8. Helmsman
    9. Pioneer
    10. Rock Climbing
    11. Veldcraft

Personal development

Red theme badge with four interlocking puzzle pieces
Personal Development theme badge for the First Class advancement


Complete 5 of the 8 requirements:

  1. Lead your Patrol in obtaining a Patrol Activities Scoutcraft Badge (two Patrol Members have been attending Scouts for longer than a year).
    Lead your Patrol in obtaining at least a bronze Star Patrol Award.
  2. Contribute to or maintain the Patrol / Troop log book or blog for a term. This should include at least 5 entries.
  3. Set up and man a static public display for the public on Scouting. This can be done at your Scout hall or other venue for at least one day.
  4. On your own or with another Scout, plan and lead a campfire that is at least 40 minutes long.
  5. Attend a PLTC course.
  6. Obtain one physical activity Interest badge. For example: Athlete, Physical Fitness, Sportsman, Archer, Master-at-Arms, Surfer, Canoeist, Hike Leader, etc.
  7. Plan and lead a friendship activity with a Patrol from another Troop.
  8. Discuss with your Patrol the concept of succession planning. After approval from your COH or Scouter develop and implement a plan to mentor the next Scout in line to you.

See also

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