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Cookie Updates

Cookie Credits 2021

 

We are switching POS systems this year. We will switch from Sage to Cheddar Up.  Learn more about Cheddar Up.

This webinar recording gives an overview of  our new Point of Sale (PoS) system, Cheddar Up, and how to use it.

Town Hall: Troop Leaders and Cookie Managers, Initial Orders and COVID

FAQs For Independent Girls

For Independent/Juliette Girls

Who is our main contact for questions?

Raine Fryberger will be handling the Independent/Juliette Girls. You can send her an email to customercare@girlscoutsalaska.org or call 248-2250.

I’m new to this—what do I do!?

We are having a special meeting for individual/Juliette girl caregivers on January 18. You can attend this meeting or get in touch with Raine at customercare@girlscoutsalaska.org or 248-2250.

How are payments (to the council) handled when a girl is an independent?

Payments can be made through digital cookie, at the council office in person or by mail or directly at any branch of First National Bank of Alaska to our council account. Please contact us at customercare@girlscoutsalaska.org if you need banking/deposit information.

How do rewards work for Independent/Juliette Girls?

Girl Scouts can earn Cookie Dough along with any earned rewards. Individually Registered Girls do not have bank accounts and therefore, will receive Cookie Dough in place of troop proceeds. Cookie Dough can be used toward any Girl Scouts of Alaska merchandise or Girl Scouts of Alaska events such as camp, Encampment, STEM events, and the Zoo Overnight. Cookie Dough cards are used like a debit/credit card and include a card number and CVV code. Cookie proceed ranges can be found on page 23 of the Juliette and Independent Seller Cookie Manager Manual.

How do booths work for Independent/Juliette Girls?

Independent/Juliette girls can sign up to sell at a booth just like troops do. If more than one Independent/Juliette wants to team up with another, all safety protocols pertain just as for troops.

How many boxes of cookies can Independent sellers pick up?

IRG’s cannot pick up more than 7 cases of cookies before the balance is paid. 

Cookie FAQ for 2021 Season

As we move forward in cookie season, we wanted to answer the top questions we’ve been getting.  We’ll continue to update this document.  We’ll keep it updated on our website and in Ebudde.  Thank you!

Selling cookies during a pandemic

How are we supposed to sell cookies during a pandemic when we can’t even meet?

We will always put our girls’ safety first during the cookie sale.  Currently, most communities in Alaska are on high alert meaning it’s not safe for groups to gather.  However, some statuses are changing daily.  Because the actual booth sales are still six weeks away, we are making plans for booths with the hope that our community numbers are better.  As we’ve done throughout the pandemic, we will make decisions based on best information at the time. 

If we can’t have booths, won’t it be hard to sell cookies?

It will be harder, yes.  But, we do anticipate a very big spike in Digital Cookie and the use of contactless drop-offs like we did in the second half of the sale last year.  We’ll continue to give guidance and tips on how to do those kinds of deliveries.

How will we do ordering if we don’t know about booths?

We won’t order until the end of January, so hopefully we’ll have even more information before then.  We will keep monitoring the information and give more guidance as we get closer to the date to make orders.

Will the Council order extra cookies for us to get if we order too few?

Yes.  We will also evaluate all the information at the time, but we will put in an order as we have in the past.

Can girls take orders door-to-door?

Yes as long as all precautions are taken.  Be sure to wear masks, go with a guardian, etc.  People may be a little reticent to open the door, so let your child know this might happen.  Eliminate contact by using a clipboard and taking the information.

Will you give us more guidance before we have to order?

Yes.  We will have some group meetings and we’re very happy to talk to people individually about how to order.

Are there plans to adjust the PGA reward requirement considering Covid limitations?

We did adjust the PGA in our planning for this season down from where it was last season.  We’ve seen so far that, the demand for Girl Scouts Cookies is still high and the PGA is one of many achievable goals in the program.  We also hope to have continued success this year with our Buy-out Program through local businesses to assist the girls in reaching their goals.

Ensure that credit card sales /Sage will be available so we can do contactless delivery

We are introducing a new payment system this year that is widely used by other councils and offers much more flexibility for remote payments, not just for cookies but for activities, parent-to-troop transactions, etc.  This new system is called Cheddar-up.  Be looking for more information in the coming weeks.  There is also the Digital Cookie App that offers the ability to process remote payments, this is a great way for individual girls to participate with the Cookie Program.  We will have training for the app as well.

How are payments (to the council) handled when a girl is an independent?

Payments can be made through digital cookie, at the council office in person or by mail or directly at any branch of First National Bank of Alaska to our council account.  Please contact us at customercare@girlscoutsalaska.org if you need banking/deposit information.

Will the Girl Scout cookie season be longer than typical, like last year to allow for covid challenges?

Last year, we made adjustments throughout the season to help accommodate the ever-changing landscape of the world during the pandemic.  While our current circumstance is still not ideal, we at least have more knowledge about how this season might play out.  We know the extended season was hard on everyone last year, and at this point, we do not have plans to extend the current season.  We will, however, remain flexible.

Will the Council take back the cookies again this year if we don’t sell them all?

No.  Last year was the only year we have been able to do that and we did it because of the extreme conditions of the pandemic.  When we had to shut down booths in the middle of the season, we quickly pivoted and every staff member worked to contact businesses across Alaska to purchase extra cookies in bulk.  We were pretty successful getting numerous small orders from donors across our council and even some very big orders from companies like First National Bank of Alaska, GCI, Wells Fargo, and Alyeska Pipeline.  We even had a $25,000 donation from the Rasmuson Foundation that allowed us to donate cookies to foodbanks across Alaska.  We don’t anticipate being able to do bulk sales in the same way this year, so we can’t buy back cookies.  So, again, we need to keep all of these factors in mind as we make orders.

Hot topics—Planned Parenthood, Palm Oil and more

Every year, there are stories online and in some press that carry either false or inaccurate information about Girl Scouts and Girl Scout Cookies.  There are some basic trends that happen year-over-year that I’ll discuss below.

Girl Scouts USA has a very good website about several hot topics regarding Girl Scouts HERE.

You can find out cookie-specific information HERE.

Below are some answers to the recurring themes:

Does Girl Scouts have a relationship with Planned Parenthood:  No, Girl Scouts of the USA does not have a relationship or partnership with Planned Parenthood.  Neither does Girl Scouts of Alaska.

The Girl Scouts use palm oil in their cookies.  From GSUSA:

Collectively, Girl Scouts of the USA, Girl Scout councils, our members, bakers, and supporters are investing in the betterment and development of young people around the globe. This includes condemning practices that run counter to that productive development. The development of all young people cannot be facilitated by the under-development of some.

 

The world’s food supply is intricately tied to the use of palm oil, so we believe promoting proper manufacturing principles is the most responsible approach to how Girl Scouts and Girl Scout Cookie development is advanced. That is why we pushed our licensed bakers to become members of the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO), an organization of growers, buyers, manufacturers, conservationists, and interested parties, who are striving to develop and follow best practices to ensure an ethical supply chain.

If certain suppliers are not following best practices, we expect our bakers and RSPO to take action quickly to rectify those exceptions.

 

I still have questions!

We are going to have a Zoom meeting soon for folks to dial in and ask questions, or you can send us an email to customercare@girlscoutsalaska.org.

Thanks for all you do!  We are excited to see the girls achieving their goals!

The 2021 Cookie Program is approaching!

It's cookie time! Our 2021 Cookie Program kicks off Friday, January 8th and runs through Sunday, March 28th. Below is information on trainings, forms and new changes this year.

Virtual Cookie Rally

January 6th is the Alaska 2021 Cookie Kickoff Rally online from 6-7pm! All new and returning Girl Scouts are welcome to attend with their family to learn about the Cookie Program! This virtual event will announce girls to Hope the horse, the 2021 cookie mascot, introduce the 5 skills the Cookie Program helps develop, and include a hands-on project to help with cookie goals! This is a free event and pre-registration is highly encouraged! You can find more details about the event and register soon here.

Watch your mailbox - All girls will be mailed a packet with cookie rally materials in late December! 

Training

All trainings, forms, and how to guides are available on our website this year!

For Cookie Sellers – you can find everything you need here: Cookie Sellers

For Cookie Volunteers – you can find everything you need here: Cookie Volunteers

*If you are a parent of a girl who will be participating in cookies independent of a troop this year, we highly recommend that you also watch the volunteer training.

Access Dates:

eBudde access: “Welcome Emails” will be sent to Leaders on December 11th. Remember to check out the eBudde set up guide on the GSAK website to ensure that your Troop settings are correct. Returning Cookie Managers can use the same log in information as last year.

Troop Cookie Manager Agreements: Upon logging into eBudde for the first time, you will be prompted to immediately sign the Troop Cookie Manager agreement. You will not be able to move forward in the system without signing the agreement. Paper forms will not be accepted this year.

Digital Cookie: “Welcome Emails” will be sent out to parents on December 18th to start setting up their daughters’ online store. If a parent does not receive an email, please have them contact their Membership Specialist or the Product Program team at gsakproductsales@girlscoutsalaska.org.

Booth Sales: While we are optimistic that we will still be able to participate in booth sales this year, we are currently still working out exactly what they will look like. We will provide updates about booth availability and sign ups as things continue to develop. The health and safety of our girls comes before anything, and we thank you for your patience as we work to make the right agreements and decisions to maintain it.

Cupboards: The Cupboard Keeper app will be used by all Cupboards this year to ensure accurate real time inventory. Please keep an eye out for information closer to Cookie Delivery about steps you’ll need to take.

Covid-19: It’s likely that this Cookie Season will be affected by the ongoing Pandemic. It is our top priority to keep girls safe and healthy. There will be a real emphasis this year on using Digital Cookie, ways to sell and deliver cookies without contact, and how and where we can set up safe booths. If you have any questions or concerns please don’t hesitate to get in touch. Don’t worry, we’ve got your back and will keep you up to date with changes.

What’s next: What are your next steps? Complete the online training and set up your eBudde account. Keep an eye on your mailbox, as materials will be sent out in a Cookie Rally packet very soon.