Minors as Volunteers Policy

This policy applies to all minors who participate in adult Lost Pines Master Naturalist (LPMN) volunteer activities.  General liability issues for Lost Pines Junior Master Naturalist (LPJMN) volunteer activities are addressed within that group’s own operating guidelines; however, if a LPJMN participates in adult LPMN volunteer activities, they are subject to the same guidelines as any other minor would be.

Example:  Johnny Smith, a LPJMN in good standing, is the son of Mrs. Smith, an adult LPMN member in good standing. As long as Johnny’s activities are contained within the LPJMN program, all is good.  If Mrs. Smith wants Johnny to participate as a volunteer doing trail maintenance with the Bridge Maniacs, Mrs. Smith must comply with the procedures outlined below; Johnny’s status as a LPJMN is irrelevant in this case:  he is treated as other minor would be treated.

Operating Constraints.

  • Although adult LPMNs are covered by general liability insurance carried by Texas Parks and Wildlife Department for TMNs working within the scope of their duties, minors are not.
  • Parents/guardians must be present at each adult volunteer activity in which their minor child participates.
  • Parents/guardians must submit a signed/dated Agreement of Release and Indemnity to the LPMN leader of an adult LPMN volunteer activity before his/her child participates.

General Liability Release.

  • A copy of the Agreement of Release and Indemnity can be downloaded from this website: (link to “Volunteer” tab of LPMN website).
  • Parent/guardian accepts the hazards of such work and releases and indemnifies from liability the LPMN organization, its Board of Directors, officers, members and representatives.
  • Parent/guardian also indemnifies and releases the parties above from claims presented by their child or by any third parties (such as a medical service provider).

Procedures.

  • Parents/guardians MUST participate in the adult LPMN volunteer activity along with their child, for the full duration of the child’s participation.
  • Parents/guardians continue to be responsible for the child’s safety and welfare throughout participation in the volunteer activity.
  • An Agreement of Release and Indemnity for the minor child is good for the duration of any event that is substantially the same.  A new signed agreement is required for each substantially different event in which the child’s participation is requested.

Example:  Working with the Bridge Maniacs throughout the year is covered by one agreement because the volunteer activity is substantially the same, i.e., environmental work.  If Mrs. Smith wants Johnny to also man a booth at NatureFest or participate as a volunteer in the Wildlife Extravaganza, each of these events would require a separate agreement.

  • Questions/issues related to minors volunteering in adult LPMN projects should be directed to the chapter Vice President for resolution.

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