By Catherine Royka
The new year brings a busy and exciting time for the Girl Scouts of Middle Tennessee who just celebrated a milestone event; 100 years in Middle Tennessee! The organization is always looking to grow and reach new heights. Since 1917, the Girl Scouts of Middle Tennessee have been preparing girls to empower themselves by developing skills they can use across all areas of life.
Who They Are
Girl Scouts is the premier leadership organization for girls in the world, and that has not changed. Their programming has expanded over the years to accommodate 21st century skills and practices that provide girls the resources to keep growing into the next generation of leaders. The organization has aided girls to succeed in numerous ways, helping them gain a strong sense of self, seek challenges, display positive values, help maintain healthy relationships and to identify and solve problems in the community.
Girls are able to utilize a variety of innovative programs and engage in unique opportunities. The goal of their outreach initiatives is to develop leadership skills through activities and programs that empower girls to confidently make positive decisions about their health, education and future. Community members help lead these outreach troops with activities that are about STEAM (science, technology, engineering, art and math), health, community service, financial literacy, relationship, communication skills and so much more.
When you join Girl Scouts, you join a sisterhood of individuals with whom you can rock climb, hike, canoe, camp, travel overseas, learn how to code, plan for academic and professional futures and, most importantly, have fun. The possibilities are truly endless.
Outreach & Involvement
Fundraising is key for the Girl Scouts. Without it, some activities, camps and programs could not be possible. A large part of how they maintain resources for girls and volunteers is through the generosity of the community. With the support from the community, they can keep helping girls empower themselves and learn the skills it takes to speak up and solve problems.
Volunteers and team leaders are an integral part of the organization to help carry out the mission of the Girl Scouts. However, troop leaders aren’t just volunteers. Leaders have the chance to guide and walk alongside girls as they grow out of their shells and grow their character. Troop leaders help to be the catalyst for girls to gain courage and confidence.
Reaching New Heights
The 2016-2017 timeframe was a big year for the Girl Scout Cookie Program in Middle Tennessee. Girl Scouts in the thirty-nine counties utilized the skills they learned through Girl Scouting and experienced the top sale in council history, selling more than 1.8 million boxes of cookies. Of this, 37,000 packages were designated for their Gift of Caring program, which delivers cookies to our soldiers in Fort Campbell. In addition to cookies, Girl Scouts of Middle Tennessee also saw an eight-percent growth in membership in 2017 and served more than 1,700 girls at residential camp.
Last year was the 100th anniversary of the first known Girl Scout Cookie sale. Girl Scout Troops will be at local grocery stores and supermarkets from February 4th through March 4th selling cookies. When you buy cookies, 100-percent of the net proceeds go directly back to girls in the thirty-nine counties Girl Scouts of Middle Tennessee serves. The Cookie Program helps girls as young as five years old, develop key business and leadership skills that last a lifetime: Including goal setting, decision making, money management, people skills and business ethics.
There are eight varieties of flavors this year: Thin Mints, Samoas, Tagalongs, Do-si-dos, Trefoils, Savannah Smiles, Toffee-tastic and Girl Scout S’mores. Yes, S’mores are back again this year! Their original flavors are $3.50 a box. Special flavors Toffee-tastic and S’mores are $5 a box.
To learn more about the program and how to join or volunteer, please visit gsmidtn.org or call 615.383.0490.