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Description :
Information for Scouts, Unit Leaders and Merit Badge Counselors
Full Text :
The following procedures and files have been assembled using The Guide to Advancement 2015 and Councilís Boy Scout Advancement Policy Statement dated September 2015.

Section 7 in The Guide to Advancement covers the Merit Badge Program. All merit badge counselors, unit leaders, Scouts, etc. should become familiar with the information provided in this section.

When a Scout desires to begin work on a merit badge he meets with his unit leader to request a ďblue card.Ē It is the unit leaderís responsibility to provide the Scout with names and contact information of currently registered merit badge counselors.

It's the Advancement Committee's policy to e-mail a list of current merit badge counselors to Scoutmasters every three to four months. Due to concerns about merit badge counselor privacy, and since Scouts should receive the names and contact information from the Scoutmaster, the list should not be made available to Scouts, their parents or others. The Scoutís interaction with the Scoutmaster in discussing work on a badge, requesting a blue card and obtaining a counselorís name, is an important part of the merit badge plan. Any unit leader who would like an updated list should contact the Advancement Committee at and the list will be e-mailed to them.

The National Council does not limit the number of badges a counselor can teach and the number of badges a Scout may earn from one counselor but individual councilís may do so. The Boy Scout Advancement Policy Statement indicates that merit badge counselors can only register to teach eight badges and Scouts can only earn five badges from any one counselor.
Although other districts in Heart of Virginia Council provide face-to-face training for merit badge counselors, Cardinal District does not. Cardinal trusts that merit badge counselors registered in Cardinal District understand their role as counselors and follow current National procedures.

Merit badge counselors are registered from May 31st to May 31st. If Youth Protection Training lapses, the individual will be dropped as a merit badge counselor.

Below are resources for merit badge counselors. Questions can be e-mailed to the district advancement committee at


Counselorís Compass e-newsletter:

The Guide to Advancement:

Complete guide to the role of a Merit Badge Counselor:

The essentials of Merit Badge Counseling:

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