At the grocery store, shoppers often steer their carts clear of the donation tables and eager petitioners lurking outside the doors. But when the bright green and deep brown of Girl Scout vests are spotted parked outside the entrance, the grocery list flies out of mind. Girl Scouts may be best known for their addictive cookies, but this program has much more to offer to the more than 1.8 million young girls across the nation
For freshman Jamie Caravetta, a ten year Girl Scout, this program provides her with a multitude of opportunities she may not find elsewhere.
“I get to make new friends, new connections, learn new life skills, try new things, learn how to make a difference in my community by doing community service and I get to do fun things with my friends,” Caravetta said.
Specifically, the Girl Scouts program emphasizes working to better one’s community with the Bronze, Silver, and Gold awards.
“We earned the Bronze award for 20 hours of community service,” Caravetta said. “We provided free babysitting for working parents. First we planned out the schedule for the day and we fed them, taught them how to do finger-knitting and stuff like that.”
In combination with donating their services, the girls work towards different badges to learn new skills, often not touched on within the classroom.
“It helps you know how to socialize with others better and we get to try new things, like recently we did a backpacking trip and we had to learn how to survive on our own and do first aid,” Caravetta said.
Freshman Olivia Wu, four year Girl Scout, has also learned valuable life skills that will support her budding future.
“Right now we are working towards a badge and learning about food and where it comes from,” Wu said. “We learned how to cook and we went to a farmers market So at the farmers market we learned how food grows and it was really cool.”
Not only are Girls taught life skills, they also get to learn valuable business skills. The booming $700 million cookie empire teaches girls how to handle money and interact with others.
“When I was younger I would go door to door but now I do booth sales outside of grocery stores or through friends and family,” sophomore Lindsey Kurtz said. “Either way I’ve learned how to interact with people, time management, and how to sell things.”
Girl Scouts, ever perceptive, would never dare to forget the many Americans stationed overseas, and make sure the troops get “a taste from home.”
“Operation Thin Mint is really cool,” Kurtz said. “People donate money and then using that we buy and ship cookies to our troops overseas.”
From the great outdoors, to business moguls, the Girl Scout program provides opportunities for young girls not available to them within the classroom and in environments that encourage and build girls up to the future leaders they one day will be.