Hello Girl Scouts!
I have to start this month’s column with a simple thank you. We all survived the world’s craziest cookie season! We couldn’t have done it without all the volunteers, the parents, the community and our amazing Girl Scouts. I think we all put our Girl Scout strengths to the test—being prepared, being flexible, being creative, and being resilient. I’d also like to thank the Council staff—each and every one put in overtime making sure we got our cookies sold.
We are sure missing seeing girls at camp this summer, but our program team has been very hard at work putting together a great virtual camp. If you haven’t had a chance to check it out yet, give it a try. There are a bunch of fun activities from our council and councils across the U.S. It’s very cool that girls from Ketchikan can do a program with girls from Kentucky. We’ve even had girls from Europe in some of our programs!
I hope you’ve heard we are having a Share the Love campaign at Girl Scouts this year. We know many families are hurting and we’d like to help. We never want cost to be a barrier for a girl to be in Girl Scouts. For this year’s membership season, we are offering free memberships to all girls who would like to take advantage of it. You don’t have to ask for it—we will sign you up for free when you register. This is a great time to invite another girl to join in on Girl Scouts with your girl. It’s a great way for families to learn about Girl Scouts this year.
I know we’re all hoping that things go back to “normal” very soon. We know you want to resume all the regular activities with your troops. We do too. We will continue to update our website with ways to interact with each other while keeping safe. Keep an eye on our social media and our website for more information.
We finally moved! By the time you get this newsletter, we will be unpacking at our new office. Things will be in disarray for a while as we get everything put away, but we hope to have our store put together by the end of July. We’re not 100% open to the public yet, but some staff will start working from the office on a more regular basis, so you’ll see signs of life there. If you need to meet with someone or need to see if something is available at the store, please call us at 248-2250 before you come over to make sure we’re there. We can arrange socially-distanced meetings and curbside product pick up. The GSUSA store is still offering free shipping, so don’t forget that option, too. We’ll probably announce regular hours next month. We can’t wait to invite you into our new home so we can see each other again!
I want to take a minute to emphasize a message you’ve been seeing on our social media. Girl Scouts has always been an inclusive sisterhood and we welcome all girls and families. But, we know we must do more. Girl Scouts and Girl Scouts of Alaska are committed to equality for all people.
Recently, Girl Scouts launched an anti-racism pledge, elevating diversity, equity, inclusion, and racial justice as organizational priorities and outlining the associated actions we are currently taking with regard to our leadership, staff hiring practices and training, and support for our girls and volunteers.
Girl Scouts believes Black lives matter and that we must do our part to dismantle the systems that fuel racial inequities and injustice—and create new systems that work for everyone.
Acknowledging that Black lives matter and advocating for Black lives to matter at every level of society is about human rights and is not a political issue. We teach our girls to be a sister to every Girl Scout; it is central to our mission.
We all have a role to play in creating the just and equitable world the girls we serve, and all of us, deserve. Together, we have the collective power to bring about systemic change in our country that is long overdue. I invite you, as an important member of Girl Scouts, to join us and add your name to the pledge today.