Friday, April 20, 2018

Four Ways to Spend Global Youth Service Day

Take action and earn badges on this special day dedicated to bettering our communities.
Girl Scouts take action on Global Youth Service Day.

Established in 1988, Global Youth Service Day celebrates and mobilizes the millions of young people who improve their communities through service. It is also the largest service event in the world and the only one dedicated to the contributions that children and young adults make year-round.

On this national Global Youth Service Day, we celebrate the achievements our Girl Scouts make by taking action on issues they care about. From collecting cans of food for local food banks to gathering toys for kids in homeless shelters to providing clothing to survivors of natural disasters, Girl Scouts dedicate countless hours of service to their communities.

Wondering what you can do to contribute on Global Youth Service Day? Here are some ideas.

1. Connect with your local community. Take a look around. Who are your neighbors and the leaders of your school and state? How are they making a difference? Get to know them, and figure out ways to work together. By doing so, you’ll not only earn the Good Neighbor badge but also build a lasting relationship with your community. That’s right, even the youngest Girl Scouts can get involved!

2. Build a team and choose a cause. Bringing people together isn’t easy: it involves setting aside differences and finding common ground. But it’s essential to community building and effecting changes on a big scale, so we challenge you to step out of your comfort zone and get to know people who are different than you. Take interest in their stories. Find out the issues they care about, and then invite them to join an activist group. You could earn the Finding Common Ground badge along the way.

3. Take action on a new issue. List all the issues you care about. Are there some you’ve worked on more than others? Choose something new from the list, and get to it today. Maybe it’s organizing a book distribution or cleanup group or visiting and reading to children with special needs. No matter what the issue is, take action and earn your Philanthropist badge.

4. Volunteer at an animal shelter. Animals offer humans companionship, protection, and joy. Show them some love in return by volunteering at a shelter today and earning your Animal Helpers badge.

Of course, your efforts don’t have to end after Global Youth Service Day! Girl Scouts at every grade level have plenty of opportunities to step up and make a difference every day. Visit for tools and resources to help you take civic action on the issues you care about. Need help identifying your cause and action strategy? You can also check out Youth Service America for more ways to get involved. Happy Global Youth Service Day!

Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Six Camping Badges That Empower Girls Through Outdoor Adventures

Have your girl start spring off right with an outdoor adventure!

It’s once again time for your girl to check her outdoor gear, restock her daypack, and get ready to spend more time in the great outdoors—like a Girl Scout! Whether she’s having camping adventures with her troop at Girl Scout camp, visiting a National Park with her family, or even pitching a tent in her own backyard, there are so many ways to have a Girl Scout adventure.

Plus, she just might earn a Girl Scout badge or two…

Daisy Buddy Camper badge: Camping is a great adventure to do outdoors. Here she’ll play in nature, eat outside, and sleep under the stars with her family, friends, or Girl Scout sisters. When she earns this badge, your Daisy will learn how to plan for a camping trip and properly pack her outdoor gear—so she’s always Girl Scout prepared! Earn this badge.

Brownie Cabin Camper badge: When your Brownie earns this badge, it’s a chance for her to spend time in nature and have fun with friends or family. She’ll dive deeper into planning her camping trip, learn how to use camping gear, prepare a delicious meal in the outdoors, and try her hand at a new camping skill! Earn this badge.

Junior Eco Camper badge: We already know it’s easy being green when you’re a Girl Scout, and with this badge, your Junior will not only learn the Leave No Trace Seven Principles but also how to apply them! She’ll plan meals with the environment in mind, prepare a minimal-impact campsite, and go on a conservation hike. Having fun and protecting the environment at the same time? We’re in! Earn this badge.

Cadette Primitive Camper badge: Primitive camping can be difficult, even for experienced campers, but we know your Girl Scout Cadette is up for the challenge! Through this badge, she’ll step up her outdoor skills—from planning a primitive camping adventure with her troop to gathering the gear she’ll need to succeed. Earn this badge.

Senior Adventure Camper badge: Girl Scouts are natural outdoor adventurers, and whether your Girl Scout Senior likes to kayak, mountain bike, or go rock climbing, why not combine her passion with an overnight camping trip to make the most of her outdoor experience? Adventure camping requires minimal equipment and gear because she’ll be active all day and possibly moving campsites. And thanks to this badge, your girl will know exactly how to prepare for the challenge. Earn this badge.

Ambassador Survival Camper badge: Is your girl ready to test her camping skills with minimal supplies? Once she earns this badge, she will be! She’ll learn what it’s really like to go off the grid, survive off the land, and explore the great outdoors with her crew. And she’ll not only be prepared for future adventures outdoors but also be able to share her knowledge with others. Earn this badge.

Is your G.I.R.L. (Go-getter, Innovator, Risk-taker, Leader)™ ready to start her Girl Scout adventure?

Tuesday, April 17, 2018

A Girl Scout Tribute to First Lady Barbara Bush

Today, we say goodbye to First Lady and former Girl Scout Honorary National President, Barbara Bush. The loving mother of six was a multi-faceted woman who lived by the Girl Scout Promise and Law. She has been described as quick-witted with a sharp tongue, and a courageous leader who was never too shy to share her personal views.

And, in true Girl Scout fashion, she took action to impact the issues she cared about—from advocating for women's rights to championing the importance and expansion of literacy programs in the United States.

First Lady Barbara Bush greets two Senior Girl Scouts and a Junior at a ceremony.
First Lady Barbara Bush stands with her arms around
two Daisy Girl Scouts at a ceremony.

First Lady Barbara Bush stands with a group of Girl Scouts at a ceremony.

First Lady Barbara Bush joins group of Girl Scouts in
leading the Pledge of Allegiance.  

Thank you, Mrs. Bush for your unyielding dedication to Girl Scouts. We will always remember.

MetLife and GSUSA Financially Empower Girls Through Days of Service

This Financial Literacy Month, we were thrilled to team up with MetLife Foundation and MetLife’s Women’s Business Network (WBN) to host an action-packed Day of Service (DOS) event at Girl Scouts of the USA’s (GSUSA’s) headquarters in New York City.

Volunteers of MetLife’s Women's Business Network (WBN)
engaging Girl Scouts in a series of financial literacy activities.
This is the third year we’ve partnered with MetLife Foundation and MetLife’s WBN to host a series of hands-on, transformative financial workshops.

Thanks to the collaboration, 40 lucky girls ages 11–14 learned about budgeting, credit scores, bank loans, credit cards, and interest rates from more from 40 real-life pros who took a break from their normal routine to volunteer at the DOS.

Girl Scouts take part in “Explore Careers and Salaries,” an exercise that empowers them with real-life professional knowledge.

These savvy MetLife volunteers served as financial experts and role models as they led money management activities and spoke about practical, everyday situations.

The Girl Scouts in attendance also scored badges after completing The Girl’s Guide to Girl Scouting curriculum. Talk about a rewarding experience!

Cadette participant learning to plan her dream getaway and calculate the associated costs in the “Plan for Fun” activity.
Partnerships and events like this are vital for preparing the next generation of G.I.R.L. (Go-getter, Innovator, Risk-taker, Leader)™ professionals who are financially empowered and ready to make amazing things happen in the world.

Learn more about the MetLife Financial Empowerment Initiative and our Partnership here.

Monday, April 16, 2018

10 Ways to Show Our Planet Some Love

We’re Girl Scouts. We know a thing or two about being green!

It's in our DNA. Our founder, Juliette Gordon Low, was a famous nature enthusiast—and we always encourage everyone to use our planet’s scarce resources wisely, for themselves and for everyone!

On Earth Day—and every day—you can take action to help protect and honor the planet we all call home. There’s only one Earth, but there are so many ways to celebrate it!

Here are some ideas to get you started:

1. Go outside. Nothing says you love Mother Nature like spending some quality time with her! Take a walk. Smell a flower. Listen to the birds. Take photos in a national park and share your best shots on Instagram and Twitter using #gsoutdoors. Then check out your photos—and others.

2. Recycle. Items made from glass, paper, metal, or plastic can all be recycled into new products instead of clogging our landfills or spoiling the environment. So don’t trash it, recycle it! You’ll help conserve resources, prevent pollution, reduce greenhouse gases, and make the environment healthy for future generations.      

3. Plant a garden. See firsthand how plants develop and thrive. Grow your own flowers, fruits, veggies, a tree, or all of them! You can start from seeds, cuttings, or potted plants. Go ahead—it’s OK to get your hands dirty for a good cause!

4. Say “goodbye” to plastic water bottles. It’s important to stay hydrated, but those disposable plastic water bottles are bad news for our animal friends and the environment. Just switch to a refillable water bottle you can carry with you. It’s healthy, environmentally friendly, and economical. Win, win, and win!

5. Flip the switch on energy use. Turn off lights, computers, televisions, game consoles, and other electronic devices when you’re not using them— simple, but so effective!

6. Go to an Earth Day fair. Find an Earth Day event in your community and go! It’s your chance to learn about environmentally friendly practices, products, and volunteer opportunities. Plus, you just might make new friends who share your interests or pick up a tip or two on how to be more environmentally aware.

7. Use less, reuse more. You can reduce waste by not creating it in the first place. Try to buy reusable items instead of disposable ones. Repair broken things instead of buying new. Do a good deed by donating unwanted clothing, toys, and other items to charity instead of tossing them in the trash.

8. Spark a conversation. Talk to your friends about environmental issues that interest you. Together, you can make a plan to have a positive impact on our planet. Or get in touch with elected officials and community representatives to share your ideas on the environment. Raise your voice and be heard!

9. Conserve water. Did you know that only 1% of the Earth’s water is suitable to drink? So let’s use it wisely. Turn off the faucet while you’re brushing your teeth. Take a quick shower instead of filling the bathtub. Be on the lookout for leaks at home and school. We can do this!

10. Organize a cleanup. Get your friends and family together and have some fun cleaning up your local park, beach, school, or playground. After you’re done, have a picnic to celebrate a job well done.

And that’s just the beginning!

In Girl Scouts, there are plenty of ways to make every day feel like Earth Day! Girls can explore the It’s Your Planet—Love It! Journey—or work toward their Outdoor badges, find an awesome summer camp, or even be part of the Girl Scout Ranger Program in our national parks.

So let’s get out there and make this an Earth Day to remember!

For more information on Girl Scouts and the outdoors, check out the special report, More Than S'mores: Successes and Surprises in Girl Scouts' Outdoor Experiences (PDF).