2022 Edition

Experiential Education Supplement (CA-EES) 4: Safety and Risk Management

The organization ensures safe practice through advanced planning, safety procedures, and personnel and participant training.




Experiential Education provides safe, activity-based opportunities for learning and reflection that support the achievement of identified program outcomes. 
All elements or requirements outlined in the standard are evident in practice, as indicated by full implementation of the practices outlined in the Practice Standards.
Practices are basically sound but there is room for improvement, as noted in the ratings for the Practice Standards; e.g.,
  • Minor inconsistencies and not yet fully developed practices are noted; however, these do not significantly impact service quality; or
  • Procedures need strengthening; or
  • With few exceptions, procedures are understood by staff and are being used; or
  • For the most part, established timeframes are met; or
  • Proper documentation is the norm and any issues with individual staff members are being addressed through performance evaluations and training; or
  • Active client participation occurs to a considerable extent.
Practice requires significant improvement, as noted in the ratings for the Practice Standards. Service quality or program functioning may be compromised; e.g.,
  • Procedures and/or case record documentation need significant strengthening; or
  • Procedures are not well-understood or used appropriately; or
  • Timeframes are often missed; or
  • Several client records are missing important information; or
  • Client participation is inconsistent. 
Implementation of the standard is minimal or there is no evidence of implementation at all, as noted in the ratings for the Practice Standards; e.g.,
  • No written procedures, or procedures are clearly inadequate or not being used; or 
  • Documentation is routinely incomplete and/or missing.      
Self-Study EvidenceOn-Site EvidenceOn-Site Activities
  • Safety procedures
  • The table of contents for participant safety training curricula
  • Drug and alcohol policy
  • Program or activity discharge policy
  • Sample of completed activity safety manuals, evacuation plans, or other safety documentation from past trips
  • Contracts, including safety expectations, with any outside transportation providers
  • Participant safety training curricula
  • Sample of documentation tracking participant completion of required safety training for three trips
  • Procedures for maintaining medication and emergency and first aid supplies
  • Interviews may include:
    1. Program director
    2. Relevant personnel

Fundamental Practice

CA-EES 4.01

When conducting offsite activities, the trip or activity plan includes:
  1. an itinerary maintained at the organization’s central location;
  2. weather conditions under which evacuation may be warranted;
  3. evacuation and search and rescue procedures for trips or activities in remote areas;
  4. detailed information regarding contact with the program director, or a designee, and rangers when appropriate;
  5. means of contacting rescue resources, medical facilities, and law enforcement; and
  6. any public or private entity notified of the itinerary.
NA The organization does not conduct trips or activities away from the program site.

Fundamental Practice

CA-EES 4.02

Safety procedures include:
  1. use of a written safety manual or equivalent safety plan for each type of activity offered;
  2. completion of a safety or risk-management plan before each activity that contains safety preparations and other emergency planning information;
  3. providing activity leaders with funds or other means for obtaining emergency resources during trips or programs held off-site;
  4. providing appropriate equipment for emergency communication links from field personnel to outside medical and other resources for trips or activities in remote areas;
  5. filing reports for accidents or incidents in which personnel or participants were injured or at risk;
  6. a mechanism for making participants’ relevant health and medical information available to staff conducting activities including procedures for bringing such information into the field when applicable; and
  7. notifying the program director or designee if emergency procedures are invoked or an unanticipated problem or incident occurs.


Elements c and d will not apply when activities are always conducted at the program site.

Fundamental Practice

CA-EES 4.03

Safety procedures related to missing persons address:
  1. search and rescue;
  2. public safety agency involvement, when necessary; and
  3. notification of all relevant personnel and parents/legal guardians when applicable.

Fundamental Practice

CA-EES 4.04

An organization that provides transportation in agency-owned vehicles, or in vehicles owned by personnel or contractors, has safety procedures that require:
  1. access to emergency roadside repair tools, spare tires, and parts;
  2. pre-trip vehicle checks;
  3. advance planning for supervision of youth during scheduled stops; and
  4. advance planning for appropriate breaks and rest stops, with a full day of rest scheduled following four consecutive days of vehicular travel.
NA The organization does not provide transportation directly or by contract.

Fundamental Practice

CA-EES 4.05

The organization trains all participants in planned trips or adventure-based activities about the prevention of relevant risks including:
  1. sunstroke, sunburn, hyperthermia, dehydration, frostbite, and snow blindness as appropriate to the type of activity and weather conditions;
  2. dangerous plants, animals, situations, and other hazards that may be associated with particular activities or locations; and
  3. allergic and anaphylactic reactions.


Participants only need to be trained on the prevention of risks associated with the type of trip or activities being conducted. For example, training on frostbite, snow blindness, or sunburn would not be needed for experiential activities conducted indoors.

Fundamental Practice

CA-EES 4.06

First aid, emergency response kits and supplies, and medications needed by participants are available and under the control of the activity leader or other responsible personnel at all times.

Fundamental Practice

CA-EES 4.07

Policy prohibits participants and personnel from using alcohol or other drugs while engaging in organization-sponsored activities.

Fundamental Practice

CA-EES 4.08

Participants may be discharged from a specific activity if:
  1. their behaviour or other problems make continuation unsafe or ineffective; or
  2. evacuation from remote locations is deemed necessary for health or mental health reasons.


Element b will not apply when activities are not conducted in remote locations.