It’s Mental Health Awareness Month. What Can YOU do to Help?

The challenges of today’s world don’t only affect grownups. Young people—especially girls—are facing a mental health crisis of their own. Supporting them as they grow and face life’s complexities is a top priority.

According to new CDC data released in Feb. 2023, nearly 3 in 5 (57%) U.S. teen girls felt persistently sad or hopeless in 2021—double that of boys, representing a nearly 60% increase and the highest level reported over the past decade.

According to the report, youth mental health has continued to worsen—with particularly stark increases in widespread reports of harmful experiences among teen girls:

  • Nearly 1 in 3 (30%) seriously considered attempting suicide—up nearly 60% from a decade ago.
  • 1 in 5 (18%) experienced sexual violence in the past year—up 20% since 2017, when CDC started monitoring this measure.
  • More than 1 in 10 (14%) had been forced to have sex—up 27% since 2019 and the first increase since CDC began monitoring this measure.
  • More than half (52%) of LGBQ+ students had recently experienced poor mental health and, concerningly, more than 1 in 5 (22%) attempted suicide in the past year.

After reading this, you may be asking: what can I do to help?

Girl Scouts plus their families, caregivers, and volunteers now have access to these mental wellness resources from Girl Scouts of the USA and trusted partners. From new activities to trainings, you’ll find what you need to get started.

Troop 701 practices positive affirmations for mental health during a troop meeting in April.

Activities you can do

From developing social-emotional skills by showing kindness to their family and friends to celebrating differences and making others feel included, Girl Scout Daisies learn what it means to be honest and fair, friendly and helpful, and how they can apply the Girl Scout Law to their lives. Get started with the following activities today and see your Daisy grow into their strongest, most resilient self.

Create a Bag of Kindness

Practice emotional skills and social competence by making a bag of positive notes for your family.

Make a Respect Myself Checklist

Make a checklist of ways you can take care of yourself, inside and out.

Activities have been adapted from Girl Scout programming. For certain grade levels, these activities may be part of a badge program.

Patches you can earn

Complete the Resilient, Ready, Strong Activity Guide

You already know Girl Scouts is fun. Guess what? It’s also a great way to build your inner strength so that you’re ready for anything!

Scientists have found that certain activities may lift your mood, calm you down when you’re stressed, and help you face challenges—and you can do many of these activities in Girl Scouts.

The “Complete the Resilient, Ready, Strong Activity Guide” includes a chart with 10 skills that may help boost your resilience.  Each skill has two activity choices, pulled from Girl Scout programming. Choose the ones that interest you, and give them a try!

Daisy Petal Set: Mental Wellness & Inclusion

Cultivate curiosity with the Daisy Promise Center and Learning Petal badges! This set of badges will introduce Girl Scout values to Daisies through engaging, hands-on activities from one or more of the Girl Scout pillars: STEM, Life Skills, Outdoors, and Entrepreneurship. Each petal badge focuses on a different line of the Girl Scout Law.

Resources you can learn from

Hey grownups!

Want to learn more about girls’ mental wellbeing but not sure where to start? These trainings and resources from our mental health partners will give you the tools you need to begin your journey.

Being inclusive really matters

Practice using inclusive and equitable language to support girls. Volunteers: Take this 15 minute training by logging into myGS>gsLearn.

Understanding mental wellness

Coming soon: special workshops for Girl Scouts to build mental health skills, created in partnership with the National Alliance on Mental Illness.

Youth Mental Health First Aid

Managed by the National Council for Mental Wellbeing, adult volunteers will learn how to identify and respond to youth mental health challenges.

Articles you can read

Here is a list of articles on the GSUSA blog you can read about mental health awareness.

Girls Are Having a Mental Health Crisis—Some Solutions, Though, Are Simple

Yes, Your Daughter Just Called Herself Fat

Bad Day? Tell Your Daughter About It!

One in Four Teen Girls Self-Harm. Here’s How You Can Help.

A Note of Thanks from GSUSA CEO Bonnie Barczykowski to Girl Scout Volunteers

Hello, Girl Scouts, and happy Volunteer Appreciation Month!

As we enjoy the change of season and the new beginnings it brings, I wanted to tell you about another new beginning: my name is Bonnie Barczykowski, and I am the new CEO of Girl Scouts of the USA.

I am honored and humbled to take on this role after spending the last ten years as the CEO of Girl Scouts of Eastern Missouri. It is a privilege to provide girls opportunities to explore their worlds, develop skills, and make important connections and friendships that will last a lifetime.

I saw firsthand the tremendous impact of our volunteers. This is why Volunteer Appreciation Month is so important—it’s a time to honor, celebrate, and salute the dedicated volunteers who bring the Girl Scout experience to life for Girl Scouts in communities across the country and the world. They serve as inspirational role models and mentors—championing, challenging, encouraging, and inspiring Girl Scouts to set and achieve new goals, form lasting bonds of friendship, and become courageous and confident leaders of today and tomorrow.

Our volunteers lead incredibly busy lives, and we are so grateful for the commitment they make and the passion they bring to helping the Girl Scouts they serve be their best selves.

During the last few years, Girl Scouts have also experienced more anxiety and mental health challenges in their day-to-day lives. Volunteers have created an invaluable space for them, and we know that Girl Scouts feel the impact of volunteers—because they’ve told us so! In a survey of our girl members:

  • 90% say they feel like they can be themselves in Girl Scouts.
  • 94% say they feel safe in Girl Scouts.
  • 63% say they get to do things that they cannot do in other places.
  • 90% say their troop leader cares about them as a person.
  • 65% say they are a leader in more activities because of their experience with Girl Scouts.

On behalf of the entire Girl Scout Movement, I want to express my deepest gratitude to the troop leaders, service unit volunteers, delegates, outdoor trainers, troop cookie managers, chaperones, parent helpers, and the many others who choose to volunteer with Girl Scouts. They are making a huge difference in girls’ lives and helping build the next generation of exceptional leaders and change-makers.

Happy Volunteer Appreciation Month! Please enjoy some of our favorite volunteer moments, and stay tuned for exciting ways to celebrate the special volunteers in your life throughout the month of April!

Yours in Girl Scouting,
Bonnie Barczykowski
Chief Executive Officer
Girl Scouts of the USA

Don’t miss these special volunteer benefits for Volunteer Appreciation Month and beyond!

It’s no secret that the Girl Scout Leadership Experience would not be possible without volunteers, but did you know the impact of volunteering reaches beyond troops? In addition to the community service and donations facilitated by Girl Scout volunteers, 94% of parents and caregivers say their girl’s leader made their family feel like part of a community.

It’s time to give back to those who give so much! Whether you’re a volunteer or just a fan of one, you don’t want to miss these special discounts available now, including promotions for Volunteer Appreciation Month and beyond.

Secure your special lifetime membership rate for volunteers with ten or more years of service. 

From troop meetings to camping trips and epic adventures, years of Girl Scout memories are made possible by the incredible work of volunteers. For our longtime volunteers, “thank you” doesn’t even begin to cover the lifetime of experiences they offer to the Girl Scouts they support. However, we are happy to share that volunteers with ten or more years of service are eligible to renew as a Girl Scout lifetime member at a special rate of $200 (reduced from $400!) as a thank you for being a part of our history and our future. Become a lifetime member today and enjoy special benefits, including invitations to memorable events, discounts, and more!

Get crafty with a JOANN Girl Scout Rewards Card

Get ready to unleash the full creative power of your Girl Scout troop! Did you know that all volunteers and active Girl Scout members are eligible to receive a 15% discount on purchases at JOANN stores and online with the Girl Scout Rewards Card*? Additionally, when you shop with your JOANN Girl Scout Rewards Card, JOANN gives a donation to Girl Scouts of the USA! Learn more and register now for your Girl Scout Rewards Card!

Add to your cart with a Girl Scout Shop discount.

If you’re treating yourself (as you should!) or celebrating a volunteer with a special gift, a little appreciation discount goes a long way! During National Volunteer Week, from April 16 to 22, shoppers can use the code THANKS23 for 15% off** most items with your purchase of $75 or more. Whether you’re shopping for camp season or bridging ceremonies, it’s the perfect time to spring for a wardrobe refresh with items from the new official adult apparel line. How cute would the chambray shirt be for campfire s’mores this year? And parents, the legacy vegan leather carry-all would be perfect bridging ceremony group gift for your fearless troop leader. 

Celebrate female artists with discounts on JIGGY puzzles. 

JIGGY, a new female-founded puzzle company, is offering a 15% discount off orders of $75 or more*** during Volunteer Appreciation Week (April 16–22). Use code JIGGYGS15 at Each puzzle features art by an emerging female artist, comes in sustainable and elevated packaging, and includes specially formulated puzzle glue to frame and keep your masterpiece. 

Explore NEW Troop Year Plans—available now for current (and new) volunteers! 

The best way to thank a volunteer this month? Become one and lend a hand in making amazing Girl Scout memories! Celebrate Volunteer Appreciation Month by joining the incredible people who make Girl Scout adventures possible all year. Our volunteer application is always open and there’s never been a better time to get started. In addition to the extensive training materials available in your Volunteer Toolkit, we’re excited to introduce NEW customizable Troop Year Plans, available now in print and digital formats, for each grade level so you can easily guide your troop through our most popular activities for a year of fun and adventure.

To all volunteers, from experienced to brand new, we are forever appreciative of your efforts to keep the Girl Scout Movement in motion. In addition to our heartfelt thanks, don’t miss your special note from Girl Scouts of the USA CEO Bonnie Barczykowski!

Joann Terms & Conditions: 

*Exclusions may apply.

GSM Terms & Conditions: 

**The code is active April 12 through April 25, 2023, and excludes uniforms, customized products, national brands such as Deuter, gift certificates, and ships from council merchandise. Shipping, handling, and sales tax charges are determined by merchandise total prior to discount. This offer cannot be combined with any other promo code/discount, and is valid only on from April 12, 2023, 12:00 AM ET through April 25, 2023, 11:59 PM ET. 

Jiggy Terms & Conditions: 

***15% discount off orders totaling $75 or more, before tax and shipping. Discounts cannot be combined. Discount code is good for one-time use per customer only, online only at Cannot be redeemed as cash. Will not be applied to previous purchases. No rain checks. Coupons are void where prohibited.

Dr. Elinor Crawford Girl Scout College Scholarship Fund Applications Open Now!

1/6 Update – Applications are now open! The links to the guidelines providing eligibility criteria for the 2023 award year and the application for the Dr. Elinor Crawford College Scholarship Fund of Girl Scouts of Gulfcoast Florida, Inc. are available below:  

The completed application, including required attachments and letters of recommendation, must be received by February 28, 2023 as stated on the application.

Scholarship recipients will be honored at the Young Women of Distinction celebration on May 21, 2023. For assistance, contact Marie Graziosi at or 941.921.5358 ext. 338/800.232.4475.

The Dr. Elinor Crawford Girl Scout College Scholarship Fund was established to recognize and celebrate graduating high school Girl Scouts who demonstrate the characteristics of the Girl Scout Mission, Promise, and Law; leadership to self and the community; and outstanding academic success. 

It is named for the late Dr. Elinor Crawford, a former Gulfcoast board member.  In 1987 she was a member of the Girl Scout Scholarship Committee which was subsequently renamed The Dr. Elinor Crawford Girl Scout College Scholarship Fund, in her honor.  She served on the committee up through her death in 2016, and was proud to read each application and girl story.  

As a professor of physical education at the University of Northern Iowa for thirty years, she served as a member of the committee that contributed to the writing and passage of Title IX, the most significant piece of federal legislation impacting girls and women in education.  Dr. Crawford was fiercely committed to lifting up Girl Scouts in support of their education. 

The application will be available January 6 and is due no later than February 28.  Scholarship recipients will be recognized at the Young Women of Distinction celebration in May. 

Eligibility requirements and applications and will be available here, January 6, 2023. 

Over the years, individual donors have also given generously to the college scholarship fund, to increase opportunities for Girl Scout graduating seniors. Dr. Crawford believed, as do we, that when girls succeed through education, so does society. Today, we are proud to continue her legacy. Please join us in continuing her legacy and providing more opportunities for girls by donating.

A Post-Storm Update from Girl Scouts of Gulfcoast Florida

Property Update 10/19/22 – We are happy to share, except for the Collier Girl Scout House which remains closed for the foreseeable future , council properties have been assessed and are beginning to reopen.  If a location is available, the property reservation system will allow booking through the standard process.  Anyone who had an existing reservation has been contacted by customer care with updates.  We appreciate the patience and understanding of our members as we ensured that properties were safe and ready for use.

10/13 Council Update: We are still currently in the process of assessing our Girl Scout properties to determine damages caused by Hurricane Ian. GSGCF will be closing our properties for the foreseeable future to facilitate repairs caused by the storm. It is unsafe to be on property until we complete these repairs. Thank you for your patience as our property management team works to get you back to camp safely. Contact has been completed by Customer Care to all with reserved usage and follow up communication will continue as updates are known. If you have any further questions, please contact our Customer Care team at

10/6 Council Update: All of us at Girl Scouts of Gulfcoast Florida wish to express our gratitude to GSUSA and the GSUSA Board of Directors who have lifted fundraising restrictions which enables councils to raise money for members and communities directly impacted by Hurricane Ian. 

As of October 6, 2022, through the end of December 2022 Girl Scout councils, troops, and members can assist as follows:

Financial Support: Council members can make financial donations directly to an affected council. All money will be allocated to council scholarship funds at the affected council(s) to assist girls with current membership year dues and replacement uniforms, credentials, and materials, or future opportunities.

Troop-to-Troop Support: Troops can allocate part of their own funds to an impacted council scholarship fund or to support a remote sister troop doing a service project or a sister troop in direct need.

Direct Work with Relief Projects: If girls are able to safely travel to an affected area or relocation areas and permitted to do so, consider helping with on-site relief activities or local activities that benefit the impacted areas.

In response to this news, a Facebook Group has been established to connect sister Girl Scouts from across the movement who wish to support the efforts of local Girl Scouts and our council. See below about how to join the Hurricane Ian Action Team.

The rebuilding process for some will take much longer than for others, however with this support from GSUSA and our sister Girl Scouts, Girl Scouting in Gulfcoast Florida will continue for those who need the support our program provides now more than ever.

10/4 Council Update:  Girl Scouts of Gulfcoast Florida is currently open, with staff working remotely and office hours by appointment only. We will update this page as necessary for the operations of Girl Scout camps, activities, and facilities. For any immediate inquiries, please contact our customer care team at

Camp Update – We are currently in the process of assessing our Girl Scout properties to determine damages caused by Hurricane Ian. Thank you for your patience as our property management team works to get you back to camp safely. Contact has been completed by Customer Care to all with reserved usage and follow up communication will continue as updates are known. 

Ways To Help

This category 4 hurricane came ashore along the southwest coast of Florida and has greatly impacted Girl Scouts of Gulfcoast Florida families and council staff.  We appreciate the outpouring of offers for support and compassion from our sister Girl Scout councils, troops, and community. However, we are still assessing the impact and will share updates and information about how you can support recovery efforts as they become available.  Donations towards recovery can be made at made via our website. For any additional questions or inquiries, please contact us at   

Girl Scouts Can Help

We will have more information in the near future about how you can help sister Girl Scout troops within our council who have experienced the most devastating impact from the hurricane. Stay tuned.

Join the Hurricane Ian Action Team

Earn a Hurricane Ian Action Team Patch. Take action with the recovery from Hurricane Ian and then fill out the Hurricane Ian Action Team Story Form to share the impact you made for others. Include photos or video that we can use to highlight your efforts. Within a month of submitting your story, you will receive a 2022 Hurricane Ian Action Team Patch at no cost to you or your Girl Scouts.

Here are some age-appropriate ideas for your Girl Scout to consider: 

Take Action IdeaAll Girl ScoutsOlder Girl Scouts
Join Clean Up EffortsHelp your family, neighbors, place of worship, sports field or other community location to clean up leaves, branches, and debris from storm.  Explore opportunities to volunteer for organizations like Volunteer FloridaSalvation Army Ft. Myers or other environmental protection organizations in your area.
Support Relief ServicesPut together disaster recovery kits for organizations like Metropolitan Ministries or Feeding Tampa Bay.

Collect non-perishable foods that can be eaten without power: granola bars, cereal, juice boxes, water, etc.
Donate Blood.

Gather and donate non-perishable foods to Feeding Florida.

Register as a Hurricane Ian volunteer at COAD in Port Charlotte. 
Care for AnimalsCollect items shelters need like blankets, food and toys.

Put together foster kits that shelters can deliver to foster pet parents.
Volunteer at shelters walking dogs and cleaning kennel spaces.

Learn about ways to help local animal shelters by donating supplies or fostering animals.
Show Gratitude & KindnessPaint a gratitude poster and drop it off to a local firehouse, sheriff’s office, hospital, etc.

Put out signs in your windows thanking emergency workers.
Organize a first responders’ night at a local restaurant.  

Highlight Our Hurricane Ian Action Team

Every time you see GSGCF highlight one of our Hurricane Ian Action Team members, share the post and spread the word that Girl Scouts makes a transformative difference in the lives of girls.

Follow us on FacebookInstagram, and LinkedIn.

Thank You!

During a natural disaster like Hurricane Ian, Girl Scouts courageously step up to help others in their community and beyond. Everything that Girl Scouts teaches and stands for, prepares us for moments like these. Through unimaginable hardships, Girl Scouts strive to make a difference and make the world a better place.

Will you #BeTheOne?

In March of 2020, we stood by our television screens in awe as the nation believed with hesitancy that they would only be spending two weeks at home. Here we are about two years later, still dealing with the lingering effects of the COVID-19 pandemic, while striving to bring ourselves back to what we once knew as normal.

Girl Scouts, as well as many other non-profits, took a hard hit when our usual in-person fundraisers, events, meetings, and programs came to a screeching halt. Even our iconic Girl Scout Cookie program was cut short, resulting in unsold inventory. Girl Scouts of Gulfcoast Florida took challenging pivots to re-strategize what the Girl Scout experience looked like in this new world of uncertainty.

Staff, caregivers, volunteers, and board members rose to the occasion to provide creative virtual programming, at-home projects, and scheduled online meetings to keeps girls engaged and hopeful during a time when hope was hard to come by.

While the world around us continually changed, one thing remained the same – The Giving Challenge. Once again, this biennial event, presented by the Community Foundation of Sarasota County, with giving strengthened by the Patterson Foundation, showcased the power of people determined to help their community.

This unwavering commitment to community and well-being of others was never more evident than demonstrated by our frontline workers. Their heroism is what inspired our 2020 Giving Challenge theme, “#BeTheOne To Honor.” Our girls and volunteers welcomed the opportunity to personally deliver excess inventory to our Hometown Heroes in hopes of raising their spirits.

Also, early on in the pandemic, Girl Scouts recognized the stress and loneliness that seniors were facing, especially those in assisted living facilities. Girl Scouts of Gulfcoast Florida launched a council-wide service project, “Across The Generations.” Girls and their families honored seniors by sending them cards, pictures, and letters connecting them to the outside world. This program was a success and as a result #AcrossTheGenerations has been implemented at a national level within our Girl Scout organization and continues to brighten the days of seniors across the country.

Building on this effort, Girl Scouts of Gulfcoast Florida’s Giving Challenge virtual event, “Across the Generations Virtual Singalong,” was presented in partnership with local senior living facilities delivering smiles and the joy of music, benefitting not only the residents but the frontline workers caring for them.

In the two years since the 2020 Giving Challenge, the long term effects on mental health across all generations due to the pandemic has become more apparent. Scrolling on social media platforms increased significantly. This easily becomes an endless, vicious cycle that can be taxing on one’s body image and self-worth and results in heightened stress and anxiety.

In recognition of this issue, our 2022 Giving Challenge theme is “#BeTheOne to be Resilient, Courageous and Strong.” With a focus on mental health, we want to discover new ways to help girls strengthen their well-being, while providing them with skills to assist others in our community.

We are pleased to announce our partnership with Prospect Riding Center, who share our common values and strive to create a nurturing and safe environment for those in which they serve. This partnership with Prospect became seamless and a perfect match as they serve a community for therapeutic and recreational riding. Their therapeutic equine activities help individuals improve strength and balance, build confidence, and reduce anxiety.

Together, we can encourage the young women of our community to become the future philanthropists, change makers, and leaders. Because of the Giving Challenge, our donors and supporters are able to help us make an impact with 1:1 matches up to $100 per unique donor gift from The Patterson Foundation, and additional cash prizes in a variety of categories.

Mark your calendars from noon to noon on April 26-27, the challenge is on. #BeTheOne to support us in our mission of building girls of courage, confidence, and character who make the world a better place. 

Let’s Celebrate Girl Scout Volunteers!

It’s National Volunteer Month, and there’s no doubt that our amazing Girl Scout volunteers deserve a standing ovation. Yes, the Girl Scout experience may have looked a bit different last year, but from finding new ways to connect online to being in touch through phone calls and texting to coming up with safe ways to meet in person while following local guidelines, our troop leaders, cookie captains, and other volunteers have risen to the challenge and done their absolute best in trying times.

For all they are and all they do, we hope you’ll join us in saying thank you. Let them know their actions, both big and small, matter to you personally and make a difference in your community. 

Whether you’re short on time or want to make a whole project of it with your troop, check out these simple ways to show your appreciation.

  • Bake a special treat to brighten their day.
  • Give them a shoutout with a special social media post.
  • Send a quick video thanking them for all they’ve helped your troop accomplish.
  • Choose a project from Girl Scouts at Home to make and give to your volunteer. 
  • Team up with other troop families to purchase a token of appreciation for your volunteer from the Girl Scout Shop—plus, when you use code VOLUNTEER2021, you’ll get a sweet 10% off!* 

 When it comes to showing gratitude, we’ve got this!
*The code is active April 1 through April 30, 2021, for a 10% discount at The code is for one-time use per customer, online-only, at The discount is not taken on any applicable shipping, handling, or taxes for each order.

Source: Let’s Celebrate Girl Scout Volunteers!

What’s new around camp this holiday season!

Chippy is anxiously awaiting all of you to return to camp this holiday season! She did not anticipate everyone being gone for so long due to the coronavirus, so she is so excited to have you back soon. Here are some of the things Chippy noticed since the last time she updated you in spring.

Highlights at Camp Honi Hanta

Council staff organized the following:

  • Key Builders installed new bathhouse doors at Eagles Perch so they can be locked for additional safety.
  • Our handyman, Tom, painted all the interior doors in the lodge so everything looks fresh as you walk in and out.
  • Some camp signs were repainted and installed.
  • The pool company was able to fix some major leaks, so we should not see as much reduction in the water level as we have had in the past.
  • Shell has now replaced all the pine park mulch in the pool area landscape beds so the area will stay much cleaner.

Adult volunteers and staff assisted with the following:

  • The boat ramp was pressure washed and treated.
  • A small window unit air conditioner was installed in the lodge kitchen to help keep that area cooler during service unit encampments.
  • The rickety ramp to the Armadillo Cabin #3 was demolished.
  • Archery and kayak/canoe program area equipment was inspected and repaired.

Troop/service unit members worked on the following projects:

  • A fun and playful mural entitled “SPLASH ZONE,” was designed and painted by artist Amber Hill, one of our volunteer leaders of troop 7.

Highlights at Camp Caloosa

Our Girl Scout dad, Jason, was busy mowing camp regularly to keep the trails cleared every month. Plus, he was able to complete the following:

  • Installed a new railing by the lake edge where the old pier was taken out
  • Installed a rope swing near the rain forest on the north side of the property
  • Repaired the front access gate
  • Installed a partitioned area of the Equipment Depot for low ropes equipment
  • Painted the stairs to the Chalet

Adult volunteers and staff assisted with the following:

  • Organizing the portable low ropes equipment in the secured area of the Equipment Depot and providing directions for use. Only leaders who have been certified/trained for this skill will have access to this area. 
  • Both floors of the bathhouses were cleaned and freshly painted.

Don’t forget—there’s a Honi Hanta Hero and a Caloosa Champion patch that girls can earn for doing a service project at each respective camp! We have painting projects, cleaning projects, signage projects, trimming trails, and much more. There’s always something to do to improve camp and leave it better than we found it.

Camp Reminders

  • VERIFICATION OF OUTDOOR SKILLS TRAINING – We are now verifying certifications when a reservation in our system takes place to ensure your troop/service unit will be meeting all the requirements of your desired camp out.
  • If you borrow a piece of equipment from another campsite while you are at camp, please return it to its original location so all of our equipment can be accounted for.
  • You must have authorization to visit any of our camps while NOT during a reservation. Please make sure you are calling to get approval to be on site so we can inform our volunteer caretakers that you will be visiting the property.
  • You are responsible to adhere to all new COVID-19 guidelines and requirements during camp activities.
  • You must leave a Camp Check Out form in the mailbox by the camp front gate. We need this to ensure all of the Kapers are completed to leave the camp better than you found it, but more importantly to find out if there are any repairs that are needed. You should print a form BEFORE you come to camp, but if you forget, there are typically forms by the mailboxes just in case you need an extra.

International Day of the Girl: Four (or more) Ways to Get Involved 🙋

The best tool any girl has for changing the world—and creating an equal future—is her voice. As a society, we can help girls use their voices for change by ensuring they have the tools and confidence to speak up and speak out, actively listening to what they say, and amplifying their messages.

At Girl Scouts, we are proud to celebrate the International Day of the Girl by introducing ten of the most amazing world changers in our Movement—the 2020 National Gold Award Girl Scouts. Keep it locked on our social media platforms for this big announcement and more! Here’s everything you, your troop, and your girls need to know to get in on all things International Day of the Girl 2020!

1. Learn about International Day of the Girl: Learn about the issues girls face around the world and learn why we celebrate International Day of the Girl.

2. Spread the word and lend your voice on October 8: Invite your troops to spread the word and lend their voices by sharing stories with pictures of how they’re changing the world! Be sure to use hashtags: #worldchanger #IDG2020

3. Attend the United Nations Girls’ Rights Town Hall: On October 9, 2020, 10:00 a.m.–11:30 a.m. EDT, secure a front-row view to the Girls’ Rights Town Hall as a National Gold Award Scout and girl activists take the UN floor. This virtual event gives young leaders access to global decision-makers and a space to discuss justice, human rights, and equity for girls. Learn how to participate.

4. Celebrate with girls all around the world: On October 11, 2020, 2:00 p.m.–3:30 p.m. EDT., celebrate International Day of the Girl by hosting a Girls Speak Out watch party. The hour-long program showcases girls’ poems, creative performances, and art about what girls’ equity means in their communities. After the event, use the debrief questions in the debrief guide to reflect on and discuss what you’ve just seen. The prerecorded event featuring a live chat will be hosted on YouTube Prime across five different time zones and in English, French, Spanish, and Portuguese. Visit the website to learn how to join.

(Please note: due to the potential for sensitive topics that could arise during these events, we strongly suggest you have troop members complete sensitive issues forms.)

Source: International Day of the Girl: Four (or more) Ways to Get Involved

How to work your Online Mags & Munchies Business

Start with the basics

While many may think that the first step is creating your online storefront, it’s actually setting clear goals for what you want to achieve during your Mags & Munchies program.

How do you set goals?

In a product program there are usually two pieces to goals: Individual Goals and Troop Goals.

Troops should work together to decide what they want to do with the money they raise during Mags & Munchies. Do you want to go to the zoo to see the program’s mascot? Do you want to buy matching Girl Scout masks for everyone in the troop? Do you want to fund a community service project?

Whatever the goal is, the troop should work to calculate the cost and figure out what that looks like.

For example: Your troop decides you want to go to the zoo. It’s going to cost $150 for the 10 girls in your troop to visit the zoo, so you’re going to collectively sell $1,000 worth of items to get there. That means to meet your troop goal, you’ll each need to sell $150 worth of product.

Now that you know what you need to do to meet your troop goal, review your order card and circle all of the rewards you want to earn. Are you going to earn them by selling $150? Or do you need to sell more to earn those rewards?

Even when your troop does not have a joint goal, you should still set your own.

Whatever your goal is, be sure to write it down so you can track it.

Make a plan for meeting your goals

Now that you have a goal, you need to make a plan for reaching it. For instance, you might see that if you sell 10 of any of the $10 collectible tins and 5 of the $5 donation items, you will have met your goal of $150 and earned two patches!

Setting up your storefront

With your goal set, it’s now time to establish your online storefront and create a marketing plan.

You’ll visit and answer some questions to create your account. The website will prompt you to answer some questions about your goals and will generate a nice paragraph for your storefront based on your answers.

The system is going to ask you enter email addresses. You should send at least 15 emails – and not just to random email addresses. Our statistics shows that on average, a single email generates $7.21 in sales. So while sending 15 emails will earn you a patch, sending  to 15 people who will buy from you can average over $100 in products sold.

Make it personal

While the easiest path may be to simply send emails and share your link on social media, girls who take the time to make it personal are more likely to increase their sales.

Your online storefront has an easy way for you to upload a picture and record a message to your customers. A picture is worth a thousand words, but adding a voice message or even a video is worth a lot more!

Channel your inner director

A quick video can go a long way. Wear a Girl Scout uniform or shirt, introduce yourself, and share what your goals are. Include a call to action to give customers a clear path to supporting you. If you set a goal in your previous step, you already know what you need to ask customers to buy so that you can meet it. Use that to create your call to action.

“Hi, my name is Sally with Girl Scout Troop 999. I am selling nuts, candy, and magazines to raise money for my troop so that we can visit the zoo to learn more about our mascot–the pygmy toed sloth–and how to save it. I’m also trying to earn a custom avatar patch that looks just like me.You can help me earn it by visiting my website and purchasing an item or magazine subscription today! If 10 people buy a collectible Girl Scout tin from me, I’ll meet my goal!”

Friends and family will love seeing a more personal ask and providing a call to action will let them know exactly what they need to do to help you reach your goals.

That isn’t to say that you can’t put your creative muscles to the test. Girl Scout Cookie season always brings some really creative videos for girls selling (think about the viral Cardi B Cookie Remix!) but that’s not the only time it can be done. With so many free video editing apps available, it can be easy to put together a fun video encouraging customers to support you in this program as well.

Create an ongoing marketing plan

Your initial launch should not be the end of your tasks. Create a schedule that lasts through the end of the program. The system will send out reminder emails to customers who haven’t purchased yet, but what about those who you didn’t email?

When building your plan, consider how you want to reach out to customers. Will you use social media, texts, phone calls, in-person asks, or a combination?

How often do you want to share reminders? Every other day? Weekly? As you keep track of your sales and goals, think about leaving room to announce benchmarks.

“I am half way to my goal! Can you spend $5 to support our Hometown Heroes program and help me reach my goal?”

An appreciated customer is a repeat customer

Once you’ve made the sale your work isn’t over. Take the time to thank anyone who has supported you in some way. Think about what you can do to show your customers that you appreciate them and want their continued business in your future product programs! This could be a hand-written note when you’re delivering product, an email, or even a video thanking everyone for their support. They will remember it the next time you ask. As you wrap up your fall business, take some time to think ahead to your cookie business. What can you do now that will make you successful then? What lessons have you learned that you can take with you to the cookie program?