SNSSA Frequently Asked Questions

scouting-service-award-square-knot-2-625334 There have been many questions about the Special Needs Scouting Service Award. While we are still seeking clarification from BSA’s National Service Center on some points, we provide other details below.

The latest information has been posted to Awards Central at

Click here for the application form (512-067, 2017 version)

[Updated 28 Mar 2017, 6 April 2018, 20 Nov 2020]

Must recipients be nominated?

No. This is an earned award similar to the Scouter’s Key. Both volunteer Scouters and BSA professionals may earn the award.

What if a recipient completed requirements before the award was created? Must everyone start fresh?               

No. This Award is retroactive for purposes of satisfying the requirements. The applicant may earn the award based on activities and service performed in the past.

Is there an application to fill out?

The latest information has been posted to Awards Central at

Who approves the award application?

The National Disabilities Awareness Subcommittee would like to keep track of how many of these Special Needs Scouting Service Awards are earned. Please send a brief email to (SUBJECT: “SNSSA”) with the council name and number of knots awarded.