Both Girls and Volunteers Benefit from Their Experience in Girl Scouts

Girl Scouts really is great for everyone! While there are possibly too many positive outcomes associated with being a member of Girl Scouts to list, there is some compelling research which illustrates just how good Girl Scouts is.

Results of a summer 2014 pulse poll conducted with more than 3,500 volunteers and parents of Girl Scouts in the K−5 age range show positive effects on members of all ages. Ninety-seven percent of parents agree that Girl Scouts has been a positive activity for their daughter, that she has had fun and exciting new experiences (95 percent), and that she has learned or tried something new (96 percent). In addition, 94 percent of parents say that because of Girl Scouts, their daughter feels special, has more friends (95 percent), is more confident (90 percent), and is happier (89 percent).
While GSUSA boasts more than two million members nationwide, there are more than 30,000 girls on waiting lists who want to join Girl Scouts but can’t because there are not enough volunteers in local communities to help deliver the Girl Scout experience. Data shows it is not just girls who benefit from participating in the organization: 94 percent of volunteers have made new friends, 88 percent believe their life is better because they volunteer with Girl Scouts, and two-thirds believe their volunteer experience has helped them professionally. Ninety-five percent of Girl Scout volunteers are happy knowing they are making girls’ lives better.

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“Girl Scouts has provided a safe, fun, and engaging place for girls and adult volunteers to lead and thrive for over 100 years,” said Anna Maria Chávez, CEO of Girl Scouts of the USA. “We know the majority of volunteers feel their Girl Scout experience has helped them both personally and professionally, but in many places throughout the country, the lack of volunteers is what keeps girls on waiting lists. Every adult who volunteers for Girl Scouts can help us bring fun, new experiences to at least five girls. Imagine what that can do to shape the next generation of female leaders.”

Girl Scouts gives girls a place to explore topics of interest in a judgment-free space outside of classroom confinements, and it cultivates cooperative and self-directed learning, as well as the growth mindset (the understanding that intelligence and talent can be developed)—all of which help foster a lifetime passion for learning. The variety of experiences and the value for the money the Girl Scout program provides are also popular selling points. Eighty-nine percent of parents say their daughter gets a greater variety of experiences from Girl Scouts than she does from other extracurricular activities, and the majority of parents feel Girl Scouts is a great value for the money compared to other extracurricular activities. Overall, parents consider Girl Scouts one of the most beneficial extracurricular activities for their daughter.

“The value of the all-girl, girl-led environment offered by Girl Scouts cannot be overstated, and is so important to the social-emotional and personal development of girls,” said Dr. Andrea Bastiani-Archibald, Chief Girl Expert at Girl Scouts of the USA. “Girl Scouts is a place where girls are free to be girls; to try new things, experiment, and have fun learning from and leading one another. There is no other leadership development program in the world that offers girls this inclusive, safe space, without the distractions and pressures of school and other social settings.”

Girl Scouts is open to all girls from kindergarten through grade 12. The more adults step forward to volunteer, the more girls will get the chance to be a Girl Scout. Adults over age 18 may become volunteers, and both girls and adult volunteers can join at any time of the year. Girl Scout volunteers come from all walks of life; they are men, women, young professionals, retirees, college students, and more. To join or volunteer, please visit: http://www.girlscouts.org/join.

Author: GSUSA

Your voice and your ideas matter

“Failure is impossible”  Susan B. Anthony

(L to R) Sue Stewart, Ellie, Susan B. Anthony, Emily and Bekah at Women’s Equity Day Luncheon

(L to R) Sue Stewart, Ellie, “Susan B. Anthony” (portrayed by Sally Matson), Emily, and Bekah at Women’s Equity Day Luncheon

Every summer I look forward to attending the Women’s Equity Day Luncheon with sister Girl Scouts and women from across our community to celebrate our right to vote. This year GSGCF was also represented by Girl Scout Seniors Bekah and Emily, Girl Scout Ambassador Ellie, and Girl Scout volunteer Mrs. Cruce. Guest speaker, Sally Matson brought Susan B. Anthony to life as a courageous, strong and resilient woman of her day.

In the mid 1800’s Susan B. Anthony  (1820-1906) was a determined advocate for social justice and equal treatment for all groups. She was part of a large family, was involved in her church, was well read, and held a solid belief in what was right.

Because she was a woman, she was unable to vote. By 1866, she was fighting for equal rights not only for women, but African Americans. She was spit on, called names, fined and faced jail time for her words and deeds.  She fought hard and had many detractors- even within her circle.

Susan B. Anthony and her sisters, along with outspoken men of their day, worked against the commonly held beliefs of their time.  They paved the way so that in 1919 Congress passed the Nineteenth Amendment, which was ratified on August 18, 1920.

“The right of citizens of the United States to vote shall not be denied or abridged by the United States or by any State on account of sex.”

I take my right to vote seriously and have voted in every election since I was of age. Did you know that women who were Girl Scouts are more likely to vote than women who were not Girl Scouts? (Girl Scout Research Institute)

When I recall that Juliette Gordon Low founded the Girl Scout Movement in 1912- BEFORE WOMEN HAD THE RIGHT TO VOTE- I am further inspired by Juliette and by Susan B. Anthony’s  courage, confidence and character.

So many girls and women have gone before us to fight for justice, equality, and doing what is right for our society and world. They have endured name calling, mistreatment, and like Susan B. Anthony even jail time. They are sisters, daughters, and mothers and they work with women and men to make changes to benefit all.

Sister Girl Scouts….have confidence in you and in what you believe, work together to further the tenets our Girl Scout Promise and Law. Whether big or small, quiet or loud….your voice and your ideas matter.

Author: Susan R. Stewart – CEO Girl Scouts of Gulfcoast FL

 

First Lady Michelle Obama Supports Girl Scouts

It starts with one day, one meeting, and one role model showing her that she can accomplish. more that she ever imagined. Listen as our Honorary National President, First Lady Michelle Obama, talks about how you can be that role model. If you can’t wait to help a girl shine, volunteer today! Visit girlscouts.org/volunteer.

U.S. Senate Joins House of Representative to Support Girl Scout Councils – repost from GSUSA Blog

WEDNESDAY, JULY 17, 2013

U.S. Senate Joins House of Representatives to Support Girl Scout Councils

Yesterday, a group of five senior, bipartisan U.S. Senators, led by Senators Harkin (D-IA) and Roberts (R-KS), introduced a bill that would directly help local councils and troops.   This larger bill contains mirror language to a House of Representatives bill introduced in May by Reps. Susan Brooks (R-IN) and Ron Kind (D-WI).   Starting in January, many Girl Scout councils across the country are facing a spike of 40% in their pension expenses.   This obligation is diverting funds away from our core mission.   Without prompt Congressional action, approximately 113,000 girls across the country would lose the benefits of Girl Scouting.  The legislation would allow councils to continue to meet their pension responsibilities with no changes to beneficiaries, but it would smooth out the contributions by councils similar to rates used by corporate plans.   Currently, Girl Scouts has tougher funding rules than for-profit plans.  If you want to take action and voice your support of legislation that will help Girl Scouts avoid drastic measures such as staff lay-offs, cutting programs, and serving fewer girls (including at-risk girls), you can do so via the tools found a the Girl Scout Advocary Network.

“Remembering Memorial Day”Twenty-two Collier County Girl Scout troops

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“Remembering Memorial Day”

Twenty-two Collier County Girl Scout troops participated in a project to provide hurricane supplies and Memorial Day decorations to the 250 senior citizen residents of the Goodlette Arms apartments.  The project was organized by Stacy Hamburg, leader of Daisy troop 42 in Collier 13.

The total roster of troops participating:

Troop# 657, 389, 22, 873, 266, 114, 371, 737, 378, 369, 426, 368, 771, 686, 287, 772, 42, 410, 635, 143, 442, 274

Below is a thank you letter from one of the residents.

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Junior Sales Specialists Get Pampered!

Ahhh Refreshing

The Shop hosted a “Mini Spa” morning where the girls learned the importance of dressing for success in business.  While we discussed the importance of appropriate attire and accessories, we spent time providing the girls with proper skin care techniques and the importance of beginning a daily skin care routine. The program was presented by Lisa-Marie Hintze, Sales Director – Mary Kay Cosmetics.  Ms. Hintze did an AMAZING job with the girls and they all came up to me after to tell me what a great time they had.  At the conclusion of the meeting, each girl received a certificate of completion, fun patch and goodie bag.

Immediately following the end of the morning session, we had an Awards Ceremony.  We presented the Service to Girl Scouts Award to Abby Schulte, Bekah Horsely, Emily Mioduszewski, and Emily Mischak.  Since completing the Junior Retail Specialist Program, these young ladies have each worked well over 40 hours in the shop.  These ladies are the first to receive this award from the Shop.  We have two others (Heidi Blitch and Kaitlyn Peters) who are anxiously awaiting their ability to receive the award as they are Juniors and the award is available for Cadettes and above.

Participants w Presenter Lisa Marie Hintze

All attendees elected to stay and assist in the shop after the end of the Annual Meeting.  Sales we a bit off from years prior so we had some down time and were able to discuss Business Ethics as a group.  We discussed scenarios and how the girls felt the scenarios should be resolved.  They did quite well with this exercise and each girl earned a Business Ethics fun patch.

If you would like more information about the Junior Sales Specialist program, please contact Cathy Brown at cathyb@gsgcf.org.

Girl Scouts Help With Hurricane Relief

Troop 208 with donations to send to NYEnglewood Girl Scouts from 6 different troops recently collected personal care items for people in the Staten Island area of New York who were affected by super-storm Hurricane Sandy. Troop 208 packaged and shipped more than 130 toothbrushes and tubes of toothpaste, 100 bars of soap, 75 pairs of socks, and many other health and beauty items including hand towels, washcloths, razors, deodorant, lip balm, combs, hairbrushes, hats, scarves, and gloves. This is just a small way that Girl Scouts and their families and friends can serve our country and help others in need. We stand tall and proud to be Girl Scout sisters.   Pictured front row from left: Hannah Amen, Adriana Basile, Brittany Furst, Anne LeVasseur. Middle row: Rena Viele, Samantha Martel, Reagan Moody, Emily Lang. Back row: Brooke Evans, Elizabeth D’Amico, Courtney Botelho, Grace Herr. Missing from photo: Anna Kara Benedetto, Rachael Knapp, and Kaylynn Stiles.

Written by Emily Lang, Girl Scout Cadette and 7th grade student L.A. Ainger Middle School.