Girl Scouts of Colorado celebrates 10,000 adult members


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Girls need Girl Scouts. Girl Scouts needs volunteers.

Girl Scouts of Colorado is excited to announce we now have 10,000 adult members, many of who are our valued volunteers. This new number of adult members is a significant jump over last year. However, what this means for girls is even more important. Our ratio of girls to adult members is now almost 2.5:1!

Adult members, especially volunteers, are crucial to our organization, and we are forever grateful for the support and leadership they provide for the nearly 25,000 Girl Scouts in Colorado. While many serve as troop leaders, others are service unit managers or cookie moms/dads, or pitch in at events when and where their schedules allow. Others provide much needed financial support and assistance. Without these adult members we could not fulfill our mission to build girls of courage, confidence and character who make the world a better place.

Becoming an adult member doesn’t just benefit girls. Over the summer, Girl Scouts of the USA (GSUSA) conducted a pulse poll with more than 3,500 volunteers and parents of Girl Scouts in grades K−5. Ninty-four percent of volunteers said they have made new friends through Girl Scouts. More than two-thirds believe their life is better because they volunteer with Girl Scouts and their volunteer experience helped them professionally.

In a recent blog for Girl Scouts of Colorado, Michael McCarthy, who proudly wears a shirt that reads ‘Man enough to be a Girl Scout,’ wrote:

The best thing about being a Scouter is spending time with my kids. I am a Boy Scout leader, and now that my daughter, Isabel, is at the BSA-Webelos age equivalent, I chose to step up and become a registered Girl Scout Leader too. I know my daughter’s two primary leaders are great, and I thought I’d augment the team and offer my camping and outdoor activity experience and skills, and, more importantly, give the two primary leaders an extra registered and trained resource for doing more activities. All scouts deserve well trained leaders, and more than one level deep.”

Click here to read McCarthy’s blog in its entirety.

While GSCO has experienced a drop in girl membership in recent years, we’re hopeful that with this surge in adult membership, the girls will follow. We believe that more adult members also means we are sharing the joy of Girl Scouting with more people, both girls and adults.

To become an adult member of Girl Scouts of Colorado, start by filling out the interest form on our website. No experience is needed, because training and support is provided.

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Lost & found: Are these Brownie pins yours?


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Take a close look at these Brownie pins (front and back photos). A Good Samaritan found them on the west soccer field of Superior Community Park last week. Are they yours? Do you know whom they might belong to? If so, email Public Relations Director AnneMarie Harper. Help us reunite these pins with their Girl Scout!

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Juniors earn Bronze Award making I Spy Busy Bags


 

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Submitted by Anne Oberg
Niwot

After a lot of discussion about the needs in our community, the Girl Scouts of Junior Troop 2021 decided they would like to support There with Care in Boulder with one of their projects. There with Care helps families and children facing critical illness.

When we contacted There with Care, and asked how the girls could help, their wonderful Volunteer Director, Jodee Spalding filled us in on their awesome volunteer program, and asked if the girls would like to make I Spy Busy Bags for sick children, and their families. The girls not only helped make the bags, but they also made dream catchers, and light catchers to sell at a craft sale to raise the funds for some of the supplies needed, and also to create awareness for There with Care. There with Care also included a picture of three of the girls with the I Spy Bags in one of their campaign emails.

The girls were given a tour of all operations including the office, and the warehouse. The warehouse stored a wide range of items including Baby Care Bags, laundry detergent, toilet paper, house cleaning supplies, and now, I Spy Busy Bags. The I Spy Busy Bags are bags made out of fleece that have a clear vinyl window. The girls filled each one with various objects that can be found around the house, and rice. They printed out the items that they put in each bag, and that sheet goes along with the bag so the recipient can search for each item.

The volunteer that gave the girls the tours, and worked with them making the I Spy Bags, also taught the girls the importance of confidentiality regarding the privacy of their clients. They also talked to them about how to talk to other children, and adults that are critically ill, because sometimes it can be a little uncomfortable, and there are some things that are better to say than others. For instance, if you have a friend with cancer, and she¹s lost her hair, and wears a hat, you can say, “hey, I like your hat,” and not worry about saying something about her illness. The girls learned a great deal during their visit, and created a meaningful gift that brings cheer to a family facing a challenging time.

The girls feel they honored the Girl Scout Promise, and law in several ways. They used resources wisely by using items for the bags that they found around the house. They were responsible for what they said and did by keeping the confidentiality of the clients at There with Care, and they were considerate and caring by volunteering to help There with Care, and families in need. And, without a doubt, THEY MADE THE WORLD A BETTER PLACE!!

The girls are looking forward to continuing to support There with Care, and we would all highly recommend their volunteer program to any individuals, and troops interested in doing the same. For more information, please visit their website: http://therewithcare.org

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Including ALL girls: Girl Scout Braille materials distributed


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Submitted by Joy Henika

“Thank you so very much. This is the first I’ve heard of Girls Scout material being available in Braille. Braille opens so many doors for children and adults.”

Girl Scouts of Colorado, in conjunction with GSUSA, has made a commitment to foster the inclusion of girls with disabilities in the Girl Scout movement.  When Girl Scouts of Colorado made the decision to downsize its properties to help support more girl programming, it realized it could no longer house the plethora of Girl Scout materials it had in Braille. It was decided that GSCO should reach out to the visually impaired community and see if they could use the resources. Here are some of the responses GSCO got:

“Samantha is visually impaired. Samantha recently bridged to brownie level and she loves girl scouts! Me too! GS has helped my daughter become more social and confident amongst her peers.”

“I am SO moved, thank you thank you!!!! This is wonderful news.  I appreciate it so much. And we will “pay it forward.” “

“Resources in Maine are hard to come by and a child may be the only one in his/her district who is a Braille student. By having this valuable resource, it will be available to anyone in the state to borrow.”

“I’m the girl scout leader at Oklahoma school for the blind I just wanted to say thank you for the braille girl scout books the girls will be very happy we have a meeting tonight and I will start handing them out if you have any more we would love to have them we have a lot of new students this year and most want to be in girl scouts braille girl scout books we are having a hard time getting so we really appreciated what you send.  thank you for troop 11224.” 

Inclusion is a philosophy and  belief that individuals with disabilities have a right to belong and participate meaningfully and actively alongside their peers in everyday life. Inclusion practices have proven to be advantageous for everyone. It is a value that we must all advocate for and share. Inclusion is an open pathway to build girls of courage, confidence and character to make the world a better place.

Want to learn more about being inclusive? Check out the Inclusion of Girl Scout page on our website http://www.girlscoutsofcolorado.org/inclusion and don’t forget about the Include All Girls patch program found here.

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Girl Scouts earn Bronze making bunnies very hoppy!


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Submitted by Carrie Oswald

Girl Scouts from Troop 3279 earned their Bronze Award by supporting the Colorado House Rabbit Society, a non-profit organization that rescues and rehabilitates homeless and abandoned house rabbits. The girls had visited the rabbit rescue as Brownies and because of their love for animals, decided to help them for their Bronze. They collected items the rescue needs and made lots of toys for the bunnies. One of the things needed is apple tree sticks. The bunnies chew on them to keep their teeth filed down and the rescue also sells them in their shop. Instead of just providing sticks, our girls used troop funds to buy two entire apple trees that would keep on giving. They planted the trees at the rescue themselves. Additionally, the girls participated in a shoe drive that would benefit the House Rabbit Society along with needy countries where the shoes would ultimately be sent. They also volunteered their time at the shelter and they learned all about bunnies in need.

This story was submitted via the Share Your Stories form. You can share your Girl Scout moments too.

 

 

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Father-daughter ‘cake off’ serves local nonprofits


Submitted by Juli Yeater
Castle Pines

Our 3rd grade Brownie troop held a “He & Me Cake-off” on Saturday, September 20. The event provided an opportunity for the Fathers and Daughters of our troop to spend an afternoon of fun together. In addition, they were able to participate in serving our local community.

Each participating father/daughter team decided upon their cake theme, submitted their idea to troop leadership and then brought an undecorated cake that they baked together as well as all of their decorating supplies to the event, which was held at the Douglas County Fairgrounds in Castle Rock. The teams were not allowed to seek advice or assistance from any females with the exception of their daughters. The teams were given 1.5 hours to decorate their cakes at the event. The cakes were then scored by a team of five judges. Awards were distributed for 1st, 2nd and 3rd place as well as People¹s Choice, Scout¹s Choice and a variety of other categories. At the culmination of the event, the cakes were donated to a local Senior Care facility and a Domestic Violence Crisis Center in Castle Rock.

Our Brownies Troop consists of 18 3rd grade girls, 17 attend Timber Trail Elementary School in Castle Pines and one Girl Scout attends elementary school in Castle Rock.

This story was submitted via the Share Your Stories form. You can share your Girl Scout moments too.

 

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Leader of GECCCOs troop in Fort Collins “retires”


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*This is a letter to Jean Beucler, leader of the GECCCOs troop in Fort Collins. It was written by  Clown/Taylor in honor of Jean’s “retirement.”

A long time ago when I started Girl Scouts, I never thought it could be like this. I thought it was all about selling cookies, earning silly badges, and when you get a little older, going to camp for few weeks. I never thought that it was really about making lifelong friendships, becoming a leader, learning to help others and most importantly discovering yourself. Those are exactly the things that this troop has helped me to do.

I first joined GECCCOs right around the time of the Costa Rica trip, and a lot has changed since then. This is a troop that sort of ebbs and flows, and when we joined (the majority of these people are seniors now) the older girls in the troop had for the most part decided that they were done and handed the reins to us younger and newer girls. That first summer there was roughly 10 of us who actively participated in everything we did. My mom had the idea to do troop camping at MMR and we actually went up there for two weeks that summer. We did a day camp, aquatics day, river trip, and all the usual stuff that has kind of become the traditional summer GECCCO activities. I never imagined I would be so involved in the troop, but our little group was for sure an all or nothing group. I also never imagined the kind of friendships that we would develop throughout that first summer. Those girls became the sisters I’d always wanted, my best friends, and the people I know for a fact I’m going to keep in my life forever. They’re the girls I called when I was sad or happy and I know they’ll always be those people for me. They were a huge part of my adolescent life and I want them to be a huge part of my adult life as well.

The troop didn’t just give me a whole bunch of sisters, it handed me some really fantastic adults as well. It was kind of like having a lot of moms and couple of extra dads as well. The leaders of this troop are all one in a million and I couldn’t be more thankful to have them in my life. I feel like I’ve got more than one family, and I know I’ll always be welcomed like a daughter into their homes. I can’t imagine what my life would be like without all of you in it, and I’m so thankful for every single one of you. There’s one adult in particular that I owe a lot to. (I’m sure you know where this is going).

I don’t know how many of you know this but I actually spent the last year living with the Beuclers. I don’t think I could ever thank them enough for all they’ve done for me, in fact I feel like I could spend every day of the rest of my life thanking Jean (and Dale) for all she’s done for me and all she’s taught me. So this is my thank you for all those things. You taught me how to be courageous, how to try new things and to step out of my comfort zone. You taught me how to be a kind, caring and versatile leader (largely by example), but also how to be a follower in a productive way. You taught me how to help other people and how important and fun volunteering can actually be. You helped me learn the value of hard work. You taught me that I honestly could do anything that I set my mind to. And one of the most important things is you taught me to have confidence in myself, and be comfortable in my own skin, something a younger version of myself seriously needed.

All in all this troop, and Jean has done more for me then I can ever hope to give back. And while I know you’re going to have a fantastic retirement, and it’s time for someone else to take on the crazy world of GECCCO’s, you did so much for those of us who fell under your leadership, and I know everyone would agree that we wouldn’t have wanted anyone else to be our fearless leader. So here’s one last thanks for all you’ve done, and I hope you have a wonderful retirement. I’ll be sure to stay in touch (like I could stay away if I tried).

Lots of love,

Clown/Taylor

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Glitch discovered in Fall Sale online ordering


As with all new software there are glitches. Our new online option for ordering nuts/chocolates is no exception.  Thanks to our wonderful volunteers we have discovered an oversight in programming. The issue seems to be that the Facebook posting from last week appears to only allow customers to order magazines and keepsakes online. The customer is only given a choice to order nuts/chocolates after purchasing a magazine. This is not the way the software is supposed to behave. We are working with our vendors and they are now aware of the programming glitch and currently have offered the following solutions:

  There are two ways to access the online nuts/candy site:

1.       Via link in the emails that the Girl Scout sends out. There will be two links in the email, one for magazine/photo store and one for nut store. If you are the Girl Scout parent, you can send an email to yourself to access the links. At that point, you can also copy the hyperlink (the green button that says Order Nuts) and paste it into a post on Facebook, too.

2.       Via link on the magazine/photo order confirmation page. After a customer makes a magazine/photo purchase, the order confirmation page at the end will have a link to the nut store. They can continue shopping via that link for nuts and candy if they choose.

 Thank you in advance for your patience and understanding.

Posted in Denver Metro, Mountain Communities, Northern and Northeastern Colorado, Pikes Peak, Pueblo & Southeastern Colorado, Regions, Southwestern Colorado, volunteers, Western Slope | Tagged , | Leave a comment

Searching for “star” Girl Scouts


Girl Scouts of Colorado is searching for girls, who are interested in discovering how they can tell their Girl Scout story and serve as Media Stars and Media Messengers.

What is a Media Star?

Before the Cookie Program each January, Girl Scouts of Colorado trains girls from all areas of the state to be Media Stars and Media Messengers.  They help deliver the excitement (or do interviews) about cookie time with area TV and radio stations, as well as newspapers. These spokesgirls will help with other Girl Scouts of Colorado media interviews throughout the year too.

If you know a girl in 4th grade and above that dreams about being a star, then we want to train them to be a Girl Scouts of Colorado Media Star. (Note: From time to time we do need younger girls to help out with media interviews.)

How to get involved

All girls who want to serve as Media Stars and Media Messengers for Girl Scouts of Colorado in 2014/2015 should contact Public Relations Director AnneMarie Harper at annemarie.harper@gscolorado.org. Potential candidates will be asked to participate in an individual, web-based training session at a time that works for them in December 2014. During this training, girls will learn everything needed to be a successful Media Star. Even if you have participated in this program before, you must be trained each year if you want to participate in the program again. We like to get as many “new” girls involved in this program as possible each year.

** Note: This is a very popular program, so reservations will be taken on a first-come, first-serve basis. 

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Congratulations to the Bronze Award Recipients September 2014!


Bronze_Award_Starburst_HRAll of the Colorado Girl Scouts who have achieved Girl Scouts Highest Awards this year have done amazing things! With your accomplishments, you have shown yourselves to be leaders in your community and advocates for others. Girl Scouts of Colorado is very proud of you all and the example you set!

Individual or combined Service Units are encouraged to plan celebrations honoring the highest awards recipients. Please contact your local Program Support Specialist for additional support.

Bronze Award Recipients September 2014

Troop11665 – Granby

Abby Kuhnel

Amanda Freeman

Cate Kauber

Dominvka Reventaite

Emily Lantermans

Krista Conrad

Madeline Ruttenberg

Troop12214 – Grand Junction

Bella Gigoux

Kendyl Macaskill

Troop40206 – Colorado Springs

Ariana Mares

Claire Costa

Lisa Ward

Troop43485 – Colorado Springs

Iris Eisele

Kelsey Buzbee

Troop43661 – Monument

Lily Goudreau

Troop43841 – Colorado Springs

Brooke Unsell

Emily Nelson

Gabrielle Pylate

Troop44005 – Colorado Springs

Abigale Pace

Isabella Anderson

Madison Brace

Troop44179 – Colorado Springs

Gianna Walla

Troop52525 – Arvada

Gabriela Rubio

Troop53112 – Lakewood

Cadence Allen

Emily Garcia

Gina Cowhick

Grace Cambruzzi

Gretchen Franz

Lauren Yarnell

Lindsey Mink

Molly Rogers

Troop53279 – Westminster

Bridget Glaspey

Ella Decker

Jelena Price

Julianna Carlson

Samantha Bonfiglio-Oswald

Shelby Miles

Troop53572 – Westminster

Carlie Hartwick

Troop53947 – Breckenridge

Lily Windsor

Madison Fortner

McKenna Ritchea

Skylar Halverson

Sophia Elsass

Troop60912 – Parker

Avery Thomas

Molly Peek

Troop63274 – Highlands Ranch

Abigail Johnson

Emily Wilson

Shantell Hafner

Taylor Walters

Troop64099 – Aurora

Andrea Kaiser

Caitlyn Silvester

Claire Hurd

Troop69649 – Thornton

Annie McDonnell

Troop72081 – Longmont

Emma Polischak

Gwendolyn Kamenides

Haley Jones

Katie Wilson

Molly Mathews

Zoe Bucklin

Troop73362 – Erie

Isabelle Sease

Troop82928 – Brush

Angelis Medina

Karmia Strand

Madison Stewart-March

Makayla Salazar

Oriyana Pribble

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