Merit Badge Counselors​

This program cannot succeed without the service of unit and district volunteers who serve as Merit Badge Counselors. Each Merit Badge Counselor is expert in a particular subject and interested in helping Scouts grow into men of character, ready to take their place in the world of work as participating citizens.

People serving must maintain registration with the Boy Scouts of America as merit badge counselors and be approved by the local council for each of their badges. See “Counselor Approvals and Limitations,” 7.0.1.4. There are no exceptions. For example, Scoutmasters must be approved for any badge they wish to counsel or sign off in their troop. Before working with Scouts, counselors must have completed Youth Protection training within the last two years. They must be men or women of good character, age 18 or older, and recognized as having the skills and education in the subjects they cover. It is important, too, they have good rapport with Scout-age boys and unit leaders.

 It is acceptable for a counselor registered in one council to approve merit badges for Scouts in another. This is an important consideration, especially in areas where counselors are scarce, or when Scouts are away from home and want to continue advancing.