Every girl deserves an empowering leadership experience like Girl
Scouts and local sponsors can help councils make that vision a
reality. Community organizations, businesses, religious organizations,
and individuals may be sponsors and may provide group meeting places,
volunteer their time, offer in-kind donations, provide activity
materials, or loan equipment. Encourage your girls to celebrate a
sponsor’s contribution to the troop by sending thank-you cards,
inviting the sponsor to a meeting or ceremony, or working together on
a Take Action project.
For information on working with a sponsor, consult your
council; they can give you guidance on the availability of sponsors,
recruiting guidelines, and any council policies or practices that must
be followed. Your council may already have relationships
with certain organizations, or may know of some reasons not to
collaborate with certain organizations.
For members within GSCSA please remember the following:
Solicitation of funding and donations
• Girls MAY NOT solicit funds under any circumstances.
• Service units, troops, and adults acting on behalf of any
Girl Scouts group, cannot contact any organization, business,
corporation with 50 or more employees for monetary donation.
In-kind donations may be solicited from any business regardless of
size. This includes gift cards from grocery stores or other large
• Girl Scouts, in their capacity as Girl Scouts,
MAY NOT solicit or raise funds for any other organization. This
includes participating in, soliciting donations for walk-a-thons
or telethons, product sales parties such as Tupperware, Pampered
Chef, Mary Kay, or other similar home party sales, the sale of
commercial products or similar fundraising opportunities. Girl
Scouts may elect to support another organization through
Take Action or service projects that do not involve fundraising
and by making a donation from the troop treasury. Please note that
troops my participate in walk-a-thons, as long as they are not
soliciting donations for the sponsoring organization.
It is not within Girl Scout standards for girls or volunteers to sell
tickets, gift cards or coupons on behalf of another organization,
business, corporation, or foundation for financial support or
Collaborating with Sponsors and Other Organizations
Girl Scout troop, individual girl, and service unit projects should
be funded through approved money-earning activities and dues. Girls
get the most out of their experience when they earn the resources
necessary to reach their goals. Should additional resources be
needed, funds and in-kind donations of goods and services may be
solicited by adult volunteers.
When collaborating with a sponsor or organization, these guidelines
must be followed.
1. Volunteers (again, not girls!) are permitted to solicit from
parents, and local businesses. A local business is defined as a
business whose primary customer base is confined to the local area
or neighborhood (i.e physicians’ offices, houses of faith,
bakeries, etc.) If service units, troops or other individuals
acting on behalf of Girl Scouts need clarification on what
constitutes a local business, please reach out to the GSCSA’s
2. When soliciting donations from a
local source, you may be referred by that business to their regional,
district or corporate office. Should this occur, please stop and
contact GSCSA’s Philanthropy Dept for guidance and assistance.
This is to ensure that no business is being solicited multiple
times in a year and that we remain in compliance with our 501C(3)
status, as defined by the Internal Revenue Services (IRS).
3. Due to strict IRS reporting guidelines and standards,
volunteers may not apply for grant funding of any kind. Generally,
a grant requires a format application to be submitted. If you are
requested to complete more than a simple donation request form or
submit an IRS Tax Designation letter; please contact your GSCSA’s
4. Please note that it is not within Girl
Scout standards for girls or volunteers to sell tickets, gift
cards or coupons on behalf of another organization, business,
corporation, or foundation for financial support or in-kind
5. Girl Scouts of the Southern Appalachians is
supported by 11 area United Ways. Each has different policies
related to blackout (non- fundraising) periods which are
recognized by GSCSA. Troops planning fundraising or money-earning
activities must coordinate with the GSCSA’s Philanthropy Dept to
ensure that the activity they are planning does not fall in a
specific United Way blackout period.
Troop/Service Unit Sponsorship
Sponsorship is a voluntary association between the Girl Scout
council, a troop, a service unit, and a community organization or
business whose aims and objectives for youth are compatible with Girl
Scouting. Sponsorship implies a commitment to ensure troop the
opportunities of Girl Scouting are open to all girls in a community,
regardless of race, creed, religion, nationality, or socioeconomic factors.
Sponsors may offer to provide meeting places, help in recruiting
volunteers, career exploration opportunities, goods and services for
the benefit of the entire troop or service unit. Troops and service
units receiving a sponsorship must follow the following guidelines:
1. Troops may not solicit sponsorships from foundations,
granting organizations, government entities or any corporation
with 50 or more employees.
2. Volunteer Service Grants
and Matching Gifts from your employer are considered grants to
support Girl Scouts of the Southern Appalachians as a 501C(3).
Complete the Troop/Service Unit Sponsorship Agreement form and
submit to the GSCSA Philanthropy Dept. All monetary gifts,
regardless of amount MUST come through GSCSA so that the council
can provide an IRS letter for tax deduction. Upon receipt of the
money, a check will then be forwarded to the troop or service unit
as requested by the donor. Instructions for designation of the
funds to a specific troop MUST be included in the correspondence
from the donor with the check.
3. All gifts-in-kind
valued at $25 or more, i.e., materials, supplies, gift cards, or
services, must be accounted for on the Annual Troop Financial Report.
If a business requests a letter for tax deductibility for a
gift-in-kind, you must submit a Troop/Service Unit Sponsorship
Agreement form to GSCSA’s Philanthropy Dept.
When collaborating with any other organization, keep these
additional guidelines in mind:
Avoid fundraising for other organizations: Girl Scouts are not
allowed to solicit money on behalf of another organization when
identifying ourselves as Girl Scouts (such as wearing a uniform, a
sash or vest, official pins, and so on). This includes participating
in a walkathon or telethon while in uniform. However, you and your
group can support another organization through take-action
projects. Girl Scouts as individuals are able to participate in
whatever events they choose, as long as they’re not wearing anything
that officially identifies them as “Girl Scouts.”
Steer clear of political fundraisers: When in an official Girl
Scout capacity or in any way identifying yourselves as Girl Scouts,
your group may not participate (directly or indirectly) in any
political campaign or work on behalf of or in opposition to a
candidate for public office. Letter-writing campaigns are not allowed,
nor is participating in a political rally, circulating a petition, or
carrying a political banner.
Be respectful when collaborating with religious
organizations: Girl Scout groups must respect the opinions and
practices of religious partners, but no girl should be required to
take part in any religious observance or practice of the sponsoring group.
Avoid selling or endorsing commercial products: “Commercial
products” is any product sold at a retail location. Since 1939, girls
and volunteers have not been allowed to endorse, provide a testimonial
for, or sell such products.