The Bush Club, bushwalking in Sydney, Bush walking

Are you qualified to lead walks for The Bush Club?

You need to be a full member of the Bush Club to lead or co-lead a walk, or be an assistant leader.

Otherwise, the Bush Club has no prerequisites or tests for leaders. You don't need to have attended a training course, but we recommend that you do: they are listed on the Walks Program.

Who are our leaders?

The popularity and success of The Bush Club is due overwhelmingly to our leaders. They are keen and interested members who are enthusiastic about the outdoors, and motivated to help other members enjoy the same opportunities.

Initially, most leaders generally base their approach on their own experiences, and from observing other leaders. For easy urban walks, the need for any special skills is minimal, and this is a good way to start. As you develop as a leader, so will your skills, but it is important to remember that to be an effective leader, you do not need to excel in all the desirable skills and attributes – it is your own style and unique set of skills that gives you your identity as a leader. However, most leaders continue to improve by actively growing their skills and building on their strengths.

There's training available

As you aspire to lead more diverse and challenging walks, then it is useful to consider what further skills you may need. For such walks, leaders will have appropriate technical and safety skills (such as navigation and first aid), for which The Bush Club offers regular training opportunities. Many leaders maintain their first aid certificate up to date, and a number are qualified in remote area first aid. The Bush Club reimburses the cost of this for leaders.

Leaders also arrange and organise the activities, and these are equally important personal characteristics of good walks leaders. Good leaders have a healthy self concept, awareness and empathy for others and a flexible leadership style. Perhaps one of the most important characteristics of a good leader is sound judgment – particularly so when leading a group of individuals, who may have differing levels of skill and confidence, when the unusual or unexpected is encountered.

Try our co-leader scheme

There is a group of current leaders who are happy to share the planning and implementation, even reccies, of your walk. Enjoy learning a new skill and experience the satisfaction of contributing to a great day.

There is a list of co-leaders and mentors accessed from a tab or link on our online program.

Submitting walks for the program

Every quarter, all members of The Bush Club are invited to submit activities for the published program. Submissions are then reviewed and signed off by the committee before publication. (Activities can of course be submitted at any time in between, and these are publicised as program updates.) Naturally, if there are any questions about what a leader proposes, these are discussed with the individual. The Bush Club does have obligations to all its members (as well as to insurers!). If certain activities such as abseiling are involved, then the committee needs to have further details of the leader's training and experience.

Remember, you must be a full member, not a prospective member, at the time of the walk you lead or co-lead.

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