Monday, January 16, 2012

The Next Century of Scouting

I have just started a new job with my Girl Scout council here in Alabama. There are many young girls here that have not been reached yet by Girl Scouts and it's my job to make that connection. It's actually a pretty cool job and I hope that our Boy Scout council will follow suit with their program.
There are several very rural schools in southern Alabama. These kids ride the bus back and forth to school. Getting them back to school for a troop meeting is pretty much not going to happen. Montgomery is not rural but some of their schools don't have troops due to lack of volunteers to run those troops. No matter the reason, the girls are not given the chance to join a troop. That is where I come in.
I am traveling to each of these schools once a month a holding a troop meeting with these girls during their gym period. We do bullying education, games, songs, crafts and even sell cookies. They don't earn badges or go on field trips. However, they can participate in the council activities. Some of these troops are built with grants and others the parents are sponsoring their girls. Depends on the situation.
I had my first day at school last week and must admit that I had a blast. These girls are hungry for a great program and I hope I can provide that. I also met with a rural school and they are very excited to be added to the program.
I know that they are not getting as much program as they would from a traditional troop. However, they can start a traditional troop and go on their own way. However, what they are receiving is quite a bit more than what they had which was nothing.
It really makes my day to see the excitement in these girls faces are they walk in for their troop meeting. They were disappointed that we were only meeting once a month but they still fidgeted with excitement.
Juliette Low may not had this in-school troop set up in mind when she started Girl Scouts in the US 100 years ago. I am sure that she would approve, though. Because, it's all about the girl.

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