Valley County
          DC Trip Chaperone – Position Description


The primary purpose of the chaperone is to be there for the 4-H members traveling on the Washington DC trip. Member needs may range from questions on preparing for travel, frustrations, or a medical emergency while on the trip. Although the chaperone should build a rapport with the members, the chaperone should not be concerned with being their “friend” but rather their group leader—someone who will take charge if an issue comes up, someone who will take disciplinary actions with members if needed, someone who will serve as a role model for members when traveling and interacting with people. 

In addition, chaperones are expected to work with the DC Committee to ensure that trip goals are met. Chaperones are not expected to plan the whole trip, but may be asked to contribute to certain activities (e.g. setting agendas for meetings, preparing “getting acquainted” activities, etc.).

Chaperones should be participating in the trip with the purpose of helping youth maximize their experience—not for their own personal experience and/or personal travel.


Chaperone candidates should be involved with 4-H activities and are selected based on proven leadership, counseling, and management skills. The chaperone should exhibit involvement and interest in the area of travel and in working with 4-H youth to help them make the best of their experience. In addition, the chaperone criteria/requirements include:

  • Minimum of two chaperones
  • Recommended ratio of 10:1
  • Recommend a male and female chaperone if both males and females are participating.
  • Chaperones will not share rooms with the 4-H members.
  • Must be at least 21 years of age at the start of the 4-H year.  Recommend four years older than the oldest participant.
  • Must be available for the full trip period, including any pre-trip activities
  • Should have experience traveling
  • Pay $500 deposit toward trip expenses.
  • Pay for own meals and spending expenses in addition to the $500 deposit. 


  • Be a member of DC Committee (see duties below)
  • Continue to be a member of the DC Committee for the next trip
  • Coordinate trip preparations as requested by the DC Committee and/or Valley County 4-H Council
  • Become acquainted with each teen before the trip (by phone, email, etc.)
  • Comply with all 4-H procedures and policies (available from your state/county office) as well as procedures and policies specific to this trip.  This includes signing and following all requirements set forth in the “Code of Conduct for Valley County 4-H Adult Chaperones”
  • Participate in all trip activities.  This includes not leaving the 4-H members alone without a chaperone present other than in the hotels.
  • Chaperones will be available 24/7 during the trip. This includes sharing your cell phone number with all teens on the trip.  This is not a vacation for the chaperone—it is a working trip where he/she will always be “on-call” for the 4-H members, but he/she will still get to enjoy what the trip has to offer.   


  • This committee will consist of:
  • Parents of those travelling
  • Teens travelling
  • Chaperones
  • Selected Valley County 4-H Council members
  • Valley County 4-H Council treasurer
  • Organize and/or work fundraisers
  • Plan activities for the trip
  • Research travel options and costs (train vs. air, etc)
  • Make reservations for motels, travel, group activities, etc.
  • Assist Council treasurer with bookkeeping for fundraising activities so those travelling receive the proper credit.