Media Releases

Fundraising for Hurricane Sandy

A letter from Anna Maria Chávez, Chief Executive Officer Scouts of the USA

Dear Girl Scouts,

What a week it was for the East Coast—and for Girl Scouting. Many people remain displaced and in shelters, while others are left to deal with damage to their homes and communities in the wake of Hurricane Sandy. Our thoughts and prayers are with the families of those who lost loved ones during the storm and with those who continue to struggle in what will be a long road to recovery. Yet with each passing day, the region is getting back on its feet. I am so proud that throughout it all, Girl Scouts in even the worst hit areas have done what they do best: rolled up their sleeves and gone to work serving others in a time of need.

I can report that we at Girl Scouts of the USA (GSUSA) are up and running after our facilities lost power last week. (Our apologies to those of you who tried to reach us.) Not only are we back, but we are supporting our Girl Scout councils in the affected areas and throughout the country.  Eight councils bore the brunt of Hurricane Sandy, four councils in New Jersey and four in New York.  Councils, like GSUSA, are still in the midst of assisting staff members who have been affected by the storm and assessing damage to their facilities.  It has meant so much to us that many of our Girl Scout sisters and friends have taken the time to reach out to us from around the country and throughout the world to ask how they can help.  In initial response to those inquiries, we are activating a plan based on prior regional disaster efforts that had an impact on girls and Girl Scouting.

To ensure that the councils are getting the kind of support that they need, we will be lifting fundraising restrictions to enable girls to raise money for Girl Scouting recovery efforts in the eight councils. We encourage you to give to Girl Scouting for recovery in these eight councils. Contributions may be directed to a specific council or councils through their online giving sites.  GSUSA also will establish a Hurricane Sandy Recovery Fund to help address the needs of councils affected by the storm, and these funds will be directed to those councils once they have assessed their needs.  To give, go to donate.girlscouts.org/hurricanerecovery where you will find links to the online giving sites for all eight councils, as well as the giving form for the Hurricane Sandy Recovery Fund.

We and the councils thank everyone for the outpouring of support.  For now, the affected councils ask for time to assess and focus on their specific needs and to get back up and running. Although material donations and troop offers of assistance are appreciated, the councils are not currently in a position to process and organize them. Rest assured that you will hear very soon how you can further assist our councils in their recovery efforts. Girl Scouts have displayed tremendous courage, confidence, and character during this trying time, and I know they will continue to do so as the region continues to recover from Hurricane Sandy.

 

Sincerely,

Anna Maria Chávez
Chief Executive Officer
Girl Scouts of the USA

 

Posted in Media Releases

NovemBURRR Winter Accessory Drive

Your Girl Scout’s generosity can help keep someone warm this winter. Just drop off new winter accessories (like hats and scarves) at your local service center during regular shop hours between November 5 and December 10. The Salvation Army will get the items out to local people in need.

In return for your generosity, you’ll get your name on a paper mitten to decorate the store, a store coupon, and the opportunity to purchase a fun patch. Best of all is the warm feeling that comes from helping others.

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New Girl Scout Cookie Boxes for 2013

For the first time in decades, Girl Scout Cookie boxes are getting a major make-over. Rather than simply showing girls having fun, the new box designs give customers a more complete look at the Girl Scout Leadership Experience. Boxes showcase badges, skills learned in the Cookie Program, the Gold Award, and how girls spend their cookie proceeds.

Click here or the cookie box graphic for an enlarged version of the new box.

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Girl Scouts of the USA Centennial Commemorative Coin Unveiled

The design is set for the 2013 Girl Scouts of the USA Centennial Silver Dollar.

The obverse (heads side) design depicts three girls who represent the different ages and the diversity of the Girls Scouts of the USA. Inscriptions include COURAGE, CONFIDENCE, and CHARACTER, key elements of the Girl Scouts mission statement. Additional inscriptions are 2013, LIBERTY and IN GOD WE TRUST. The 100th anniversary Trefoil symbol signifies its centennial anniversary.

The reverse (tails side) design depicts the iconic Trefoil/profiles symbol of the Girl Scouts of the USA with the inscriptions UNITED STATES OF AMERICA, E PLURIBUS UNUM, $1 and GIRL SCOUTS.

The United States Mint will produce up to 350,000 coins in 90 percent silver. The legal tender coin, which will have a face value of $1, will be available in both proof and uncirculated qualities. Surcharges collected from coin sales are authorized to be paid to the Girl Scouts of the USA, which will make funds available for Girl Scout program development and delivery. The United States Mint expects the coins to be available for purchase early in 2013.

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Girl Scout Council to sell Camp Sky-Wa-Mo

(September 12, 2012) – On Monday, Sept. 10, the board of directors of the Girl Scout Council of the Southern Appalachians voted to sell Sky-Wa-Mo, a Girl Scout summer camp located in Bluff City, Tenn.

This decision was reached because Camp Sky-Wa-Mo does not meet the criteria to justify keeping the camp open. The criteria includes how the camp supports the national Girl Scouts program portfolio, how it supports the Girl Scout brand, how it provides service support to the council’s membership, how it supports sustainable property management practices and whether or not the operations and maintenance costs are within the council and communities’ ability to fund.

Approximately a year ago, the council undertook a long-range property planning process and considered all properties within the council’s jurisdiction, which covers 46 counties in East Tennessee and additional counties in Georgia and Virginia. A group of volunteers and board members were pulled together to look closely at just how the camps and other Girl Scout-branded buildings were doing.

The long-range property planning committee recommended to the board that the council idle the site beginning in November through 2014, remove substandard facilities, provide maintenance to protect remaining facility access, determine the viability of implementing an outdoor partnership program in the direct vicinity administered by the council and explore transportation opportunities providing membership access to other council property. The board carefully and thoughtfully reviewed the recommendation of the committee but ultimately voted to sell the property.

“It is the board’s role to make financially responsible decisions for the council. The decision to sell Sky-Wa-Mo was not taken lightly. The reality is that this camp has not been self-sustaining for a long time,” said Janice Greer, president of the board of directors for the Girl Scout Council of the Southern Appalachians.

“The committee studied camp trends and also worked with a property consultant from Girl Scouts of the USA on this process,” said Greer. “The board appreciates the committee’s thoughtful process and dedication to this matter. The board decided that idling the site would only postpone the inevitable. The camp’s status just didn’t justify keeping it open.”

“The council is committed to providing the best Girl Scout leadership experience for the girls who live in its jurisdiction. Camping and outdoor programming are a large part of Girl Scouting, and we will continue to make these experiences available to girls in this area. This decision was made after considering the options and deciding what was best for the council and the girls it serves,” said Greer.

Next steps for Sky-Wa-Mo are currently being formulated. The council will keep the public and media updated as plans unfold.

 

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Contest Winners Announced

Three Girl Scouts have done something many fashion designers only dream of: actually getting their creations on store racks. The girls won the council’s T-shirt design contest, and their empowerment-themed shirts are now available in council shops.

Emory Humphrey's "Girl Scouting Is" shirt highlights friendship, camping, individuality, creativity, and cookies.

Madison Bishop's shirt says "Leadership is Earned Like Friends Are!"

Addie Zeigler's winning shirt features a rising star and the words "Girl Scout Power."

 

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DHS Announces Stop.Think.Connect.™ Campaign Partnership With Girl Scouts Of The USA

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s (DHS) Stop.Think.Connect.™ campaign has announced a new partnership with the Girl Scouts of the USA to help raise awareness among more than 3.2 million youth across the country about the importance of cybersecurity and online safety.

“Today, we are more connected to the Internet than ever before, but increased interconnectivity increases the risk of theft, fraud and abuse,” said Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano. “We are proud to partner with Girl Scouts of the USA to help women and girls protect themselves online and do their part to ensure that cyberspace is a safe and secure environment for all Internet users.”

“This collaboration between Girl Scouts and the U.S. Department of Homeland Security will empower girls to become leaders and advocates for the safe and responsible use of technology,” explains Anna Maria Chávez, Chief Executive Officer of the Girl Scouts of the USA. “We know that girls are online. As adults, it is our responsibility to create an environment that encourages girls to establish healthy online habits.”

The campaign will provide the Girl Scouts of the USA with tools and resources to help raise awareness among kids, teens, and young adults about emerging online threats and the importance of cybersecurity. This partnership builds on the campaign’s ongoing efforts to highlight curriculum resources available to communities, and to educate America’s youth about safer online practices.

Stop.Think.Connect.™ is a national public awareness effort to guide the nation to a higher level of Internet safety and security by educating and empowering the American public to be more vigilant about practicing safe online habits. The campaign encourages Americans to view Internet safety and security as a shared responsibility at home, in the workplace, and in our communities.

 

Posted in Media Releases

Girl Scouts to host event for community at Bristol Motor Speedway

Bristol, Tenn. Any and all members of the community are invited to celebrate with the Girl Scout Council of the Southern Appalachians (GSCSA) when it hosts Bristol Motor Speedway Overnight, an event intended to celebrate the 100th Anniversary of Girl Scouting.

The event, which has an overnight component, will last from 4 p.m. on Saturday, Sept. 29 until 8 a.m. on Sunday, Sept. 30. More than 500 people are expected to attend the event.

This family-friendly event is open to all members of the community, male or female, regardless of any current or past involvement with Girl Scouts.

Bristol Motor Speedway Overnight will begin with registration at 4 p.m. in the adjacent Earhart Campground. Attendees are invited to participate in the “Bling my Campsite” competition, in which they will pitch tents or set up campsites with a special theme.

Next, the Bristol Motor Speedway gates will open at 5 p.m. From 5 to 6:30 p.m., a hot dog meal will be served (included in ticket price). From 6:30 to 7 p.m., the council will hold an Opening Ceremony and will then move on to activities/games from 7 to 9 p.m. Finally, a movie will be shown inside the Speedway and ice cream will be served courtesy of Mayfield Dairy Farms from 9 to 11 p.m.

At 11 p.m., overnight participants will head back to Earhart Campground for a campout, or day guests may leave the Speedway to head home. All attendees must be out of Earhart Campground by 8 a.m. on Sunday, Sept. 30 after breakfast is served.

Activities inside the Speedway include crafts, ride-alongs on the track, photo opportunities in Victory Lane, tours of the luxury suites, relay races, face painting, games and more!

“Hosting a 100th Anniversary celebration inside Bristol Motor Speedway truly is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for our girls. This will give them an outlet to celebrate the anniversary but also participate in team-building and productive and educational activities that will improve their Girl Scout experience,” said Booth Kammann, CEO of GSCSA. “This event is also the perfect place for families to come spend an evening and enjoy fun activities in a wholesome environment.”

Members of the community may register for Girl Scouts at the event. Dues are $12 for an annual membership. There are many different ways for girls to join the Girl Scouts movement, from joining a troop that meets bi-weekly to only attending one-day events throughout the Southern Appalachians region. The council is also looking for adult volunteers – male or female. The time commitment ranges from one-time only to once or twice a month as a troop leader. Girl Scouts has a place for everyone!

Pre-registration is requested and is available online at http://www.girlscoutcsa.org/events/227.  Tickets are $10 via pre-registration ($15 at the gate) for the day-only package, which includes activities and dinner in the Speedway from 5 to 11 p.m. This package also includes a patch and goody bag. Tickets are $15 via pre-registration ($20 at the gate) for the overnight package, which includes activities and dinner in the Speedway from 5 to 11 p.m., plus a sleepover at Earhart Campground and breakfast on September 30. This package also includes a patch and goody bag.

Everyone in attendance must pay the event fee, but children ages 4 and under will be admitted free.

This event is sponsored by Bristol Motor Speedway, Mayfield Dairy Farms, First Tennessee and the Bristol Herald Courier.

Visit www.GirlScoutcsa.org to learn more about this event and the 100th Anniversary of Girl Scouting.

The media is invited to attend. If you are interested in setting up interviews and/or attending the event, please contact Sarah Pope at spope@girlscoutcsa.org or (865) 584-0550 (office).

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About Girl Scout Council of the Southern Appalachians
The Girl Scout Council of the Southern Appalachians serves nearly 20,000 girl and adult members stretching from North Georgia to Southwest Virginia. Service centers are located in Chattanooga, Knoxville and Johnson City. The organization’s mission is to build girls of courage, confidence, and character, who make the world a better place. The council offers financial assistance to ensure that every girl who wants to be a Girl Scout has the opportunity to join this vibrant organization.

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Now is the time to join Girl Scouts in the Southern Appalachians area

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. – If you’ve ever thought of volunteering for or enrolling your daughter in the Girl Scouts organization, now is the perfect time to participate! Girl Scout Council of the Southern Appalachians (GSCSA) is putting out a call to the community for both adult volunteers and girls to sign up.

Several recruitment events are planned for the Southern Appalachians region to introduce the community to Girl Scouts and recruit potential Girl Scouts, troop leaders, troop assistants and short term volunteers with special skills. Below is information about each event.

Girl Scout Recruitment Event
Friday, August 10, 7 p.m.
Johnson City Cardinals Ballpark, 111 Legion Street, Johnson City, TN 37601
*Crafts and balloons will be available for participants.

Girl Scout Recruitment Event
Saturday, August 11, 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.
Karing Fair at Winged Deer Park, 4137 Bristol Hwy, Johnson City, TN 37601
*The council will have a booth at the Karing Fair and will have crafts and balloons.

Girl Scout Recruitment Event
Saturday, August 11, 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.
Heartwood: Southwest Virginia’s Artisan Getaway, 1 Heartwood Circle, Abingdon, VA 24210 (Just off Exit 14 on I-81)
*There will be two artist exhibits to enjoy during the recruitment event.

Girl Scout Recruitment Event
Saturday, August 11, 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.
Knoxville Zoo, 3500 Knoxville Zoo Drive, Knoxville, TN 37914
*Girls and adults who register for Girl Scouts during the event time will be admitted free into the zoo with another paying adult.

Girl Scout Recruitment Event
Saturday, August 11, 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.
Children’s Museum of Oak Ridge, 461 W. Outer Dr., Oak Ridge, TN 37830
*Girls (ages K-12) and adults who register for Girl Scouts during the event time will receive a free self-guided tour through the museum. Participants may also enjoy crafts and a bounce house.

Girl Scout Recruitment Event
Saturday, August 11, 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.
Alcoa City Center, 245 Watt St. Alcoa, TN 37701
*Booths will also be set up by Titanic Museum Attraction, Great Smoky Mountain Heritage Center, Tennessee Smokies and Wonderworks. Participants may also enjoy face painting and crafts.

Girl Scout Recruitment Event
Saturday, August 18, 11 a.m. – 5 p.m.
West Town Mall, 7600 Kingston Pike, Knoxville, TN 37919 at the amphitheater near JCPenney. 

Girl Scout Recruitment Event
Saturday, August 11, 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.
Renaissance Park, Corner of Manufacturer’s Rd. and Cherokee Blvd., Chattanooga, TN 37405
*New York Life will provide free child identification cards. The following community partners will also attend and provide information or an activity: The Crash Pad, Hamilton County Water Quality Program, Wild Trails, Chattanooga Arboretum and Nature Center, North Shore Yoga, Children’s Hospital at Erlanger, University of Tennessee Chattanooga Athletic Department, Chattanooga River Boats’ Southern Belle, and more.

Girl Scout Recruitment Event
Saturday, August 11, 2 p.m. – 6 p.m.
Deer Park, Harel Ave. NW, Cleveland, TN 37311
*Participants may enjoy crafts, a bounce house and make a bookmark for the Cleveland Bradley County Public Library. Museum Center at 5ive Points will also set up an educational booth.

Girl Scout Recruitment Event
Saturday, August 11, 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.
Joe Stock Memorial Park, 208-B N. Main St., LaFayette, GA 30728
*Participants may enjoy a performance by First Step Dance Studio, a beekeeping demonstration by Pigeon Mountain Trading Company, a demonstration by Raccoon Mountain Caverns, plus crafts, a bounce house, archery, games and education from local fire and police departments.

Girl Scout Recruitment Event
Saturday, August 11, 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.
Joe Stock Memorial Park, 208-B N. Main St., LaFayette, GA 30728
*Participants may enjoy a performance by First Step Dance Studio, beekeeping demonstration by Pigeon Mountain Trading Company, demonstration by Raccoon Mountain Caverns, plus crafts, a bounce house, archery, games and education from local fire and police departments.
*Help local Girl Scouts help Austin Whitten’s family. Funds raised for this cause during the event will be used to help renovate a bathroom to make it wheelchair-accessible for Austin.

“There’s never been a more perfect time to join the Girl Scouts movement. We’re looking for both girls and adults to register,” said Booth Kammann, CEO of Girl Scout Council of the Southern Appalachians (GSCSA). “Whether you’re a parent, grandparent, former Girl Scout or community member – we want you to volunteer! And there are many ways for girls to join the movement as well.”

The recruitment events are designed for potential Girl Scouts and volunteers to learn more about the organization, its mission, the time commitment and what it means to join Girl Scouts. Registration will be available for all interested parties. Staff members and current volunteers will be available to answer questions.

There are many different ways to join the organization as a Girl Scout. While joining a troop is still a very popular option for participation, girls may also follow a “Series Pathway,” a troop-style experience in which they participate once or twice a year in a series of programs with a particular theme. Another option is the “Outdoors Pathway” for the girl who loves everything outside and wishes to participate in camps, programs and adventures with an outdoor focus. Or, the “Events Pathway,” gives a girl local and council-wide opportunities for education and fun by attending one-time events all year long.

There are also countless ways to volunteer for Girl Scouts as an adult. Whether someone has a little or a lot of time to give, every attempt is made to place volunteers that meet both their needs and interests. Volunteer time commitments range from one or two events a year to a year-long commitment. Complete training is provided to all new volunteers and a local support group is available to assist.

Participating in the Girl Scout program has long-term benefits for girls. According to a new Girl Scout Research Institute report, Girl Scouting Works: The Alumnae Impact Study, women who were Girl Scouts as children display significantly more positive life outcomes than non-Girl Scout alumnae.

Of Girl Scout alumnae, 63% consider themselves competent and capable, compared to 55% of non-alumnae. Of Girl Scout alumnae, 77% vote regularly, compared to 63% of non-alumnae. Additionally, 38% of Girl Scout alumnae have attained college degrees, compared to 28% of non-alumnae. Girl Scout alumnae also a report a significantly higher household income ($51,700) than non-alumnae ($42,200).

To learn more about the GSCSA’s recruitment efforts or the organization in general, visit www.GirlScoutcsa.org or call 1-800-474-1912.

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About Us
The Girl Scout Council of the Southern Appalachians has more than 20,000 girl and adult members stretching from North Georgia to Southwest Virginia. Service centers are located in Chattanooga, Knoxville and Johnson City. Our mission is to build girls of courage, confidence and character, who make the world a better place. The council offers financial assistance to ensure that every girl who wants to be a Girl Scout has the opportunity to join this vibrant organization.

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Girl Scout Council of the Southern Appalachians Awards Scholarships

This year, GSCSA was able to honor 10 Gold Award recipients council -wide who have demonstrated a standard of excellence through their Gold Award project, their academics, and their outstanding service to their community.

The following girls are the recipients of the Girl Scout Council of the Southern Appalachians Gold Award scholarship in the amount of $500 for their overall achievement and for their commitment to serve:

  • Rebekah Foster
  • Courtney Welden
  • Macey Kessler
  • Taylor Boyd
  • Emily Kirk
  • Jada Kestner
  • Victoria Duncan

The Katherine B. Hill Scholarship
A $750 award recognizing the highest academic achievement among the applicants was awarded to:

  • Katherine Jennings
  • Amy Albaugh

The Mary Bob Clinton Scholarship
A $750 award recognizing the highest level of service to community among the applicants was awarded to:

  • Xrista Xristopoulos

 

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