Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Girl Scouts Take Top Awards at Solar Car Race!

Girl Scouts Heart of the South has some news to share! Girl Scout Troops 10103 and 13361 took home top honors in Memphis Light, Gas and Water’s “A-Blazing Model Solar Car Race”. The object of the competition was to design and build a vehicle powered strictly by solar power using recycled materials and a special kit containing a solar panel and motor.

Participants were instructed to use the kits along with various recycled materials to design and construct a vehicle to race on a 20-meter course. After a series of head-to-head elimination rounds, Girl Scout Troop 10103 from Collierville won first place in the Middle School Division with their car, “Samoa Fun.”   Awards were also presented for speed and design. Girl Scout Troop 13361 from Cordova won first place overall in the “Best Use of Recycled Materials” category with their entry. The Cordova girls were thrilled to be honored for their creativity but said they are excited for next year’s event where they hope to build a vehicle that takes top honors for design and wins the race as well!

The Girl Scouts Heart of the South council was a proud partner of the event along with the Chickasaw Council of the Boy Scouts of America, The University of Memphis, Christian Brothers University and The American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME).
Monday, August 18, 2014

Both Girls and Volunteers Benefit from Their Experience in Girl Scouts

Girl Scouts really is great for everyone! While there are possibly too many positive outcomes associated with being a member of Girl Scouts to list, there is some compelling research which illustrates just how good Girl Scouts is.

Results of a summer 2014 pulse poll conducted with more than 3,500 volunteers and parents of Girl Scouts in the K−5 age range show positive effects on members of all ages. Ninety-seven percent of parents agree that Girl Scouts has been a positive activity for their daughter, that she has had fun and exciting new experiences (95 percent), and that she has learned or tried something new (96 percent). In addition, 94 percent of parents say that because of Girl Scouts, their daughter feels special, has more friends (95 percent), is more confident (90 percent), and is happier (89 percent).

While GSUSA boasts more than two million members nationwide, there are more than 30,000 girls on waiting lists who want to join Girl Scouts but can’t because there are not enough volunteers in local communities to help deliver the Girl Scout experience. Data shows it is not just girls who benefit from participating in the organization: 94 percent of volunteers have made new friends, 88 percent believe their life is better because they volunteer with Girl Scouts, and two-thirds believe their volunteer experience has helped them professionally. Ninety-five percent of Girl Scout volunteers are happy knowing they are making girls’ lives better.

"Girl Scouts has provided a safe, fun, and engaging place for girls and adult volunteers to lead and thrive for over 100 years," said Anna Maria Chávez, CEO of Girl Scouts of the USA. "We know the majority of volunteers feel their Girl Scout experience has helped them both personally and professionally, but in many places throughout the country, the lack of volunteers is what keeps girls on waiting lists. Every adult who volunteers for Girl Scouts can help us bring fun, new experiences to at least five girls. Imagine what that can do to shape the next generation of female leaders."

Girl Scouts gives girls a place to explore topics of interest in a judgment-free space outside of classroom confinements, and it cultivates cooperative and self-directed learning, as well as the growth mindset (the understanding that intelligence and talent can be developed)—all of which help foster a lifetime passion for learning. The variety of experiences and the value for the money the Girl Scout program provides are also popular selling points. Eighty-nine percent of parents say their daughter gets a greater variety of experiences from Girl Scouts than she does from other extracurricular activities, and the majority of parents feel Girl Scouts is a great value for the money compared to other extracurricular activities. Overall, parents consider Girl Scouts one of the most beneficial extracurricular activities for their daughter.

“The value of the all-girl, girl-led environment offered by Girl Scouts cannot be overstated, and is so important to the social-emotional and personal development of girls,” said Dr. Andrea Bastiani-Archibald, Chief Girl Expert at Girl Scouts of the USA. “Girl Scouts is a place where girls are free to be girls; to try new things, experiment, and have fun learning from and leading one another. There is no other leadership development program in the world that offers girls this inclusive, safe space, without the distractions and pressures of school and other social settings.”

Girl Scouts is open to all girls from kindergarten through grade 12. The more adults step forward to volunteer, the more girls will get the chance to be a Girl Scout. Adults over age 18 may become volunteers, and both girls and adult volunteers can join at any time of the year. Girl Scout volunteers come from all walks of life; they are men, women, young professionals, retirees, college students, and more. To join or volunteer, please visit: www.girlscouts.org/join.
Thursday, August 14, 2014

Girl Scout Convention Host has Awesome New Camp Facilities!

Last year, University of Utah’s College of Architecture approached Girl Scouts of Utah with an exciting opportunity. They wanted to lend their design and construction expertise to build three new cabins at the Girl Scouts of Utah’s summer camp, Trefoil Ranch! They also offered to collaborate with Girl Scouts through every step of the project and to offer a dynamic learning experience.

During the first of many planning meetings, faculty and students were surprised by the outpouring of ideas coming from the girls. From paint color and wall coverings, to window sizes and bathroom facilities, the girls were not afraid to give their opinions and ideas, many of which were incorporated into the cabins. As ideas became reality, girls were excited to learn more about STEM-related fields, and delve into the world of sustainability and eco-building techniques.

Last week, three, modern cabins where unveiled and both the University of Utah students and professors and especially the Girl Scouts of Utah walked away “happy campers.” Check out this video about it on Utah’s FOX 13.


This year, Girl Scouts of Utah is the host of the Girl Scouts’ 53rd national convention in the spectacular Salt Lake City, Utah, October 16–19, 2014. This is your year to reunite with friends, deepen and share your knowledge of Girl Scouts, and help invigorate a global movement of girls, women, and men around the theme "Discover, Connect, Take Action: Girls Change the World."

Learn more about attending, including discounted travel arrangements and special gatherings that start a few days before convention's official kickoff (including Girl Scout History Conference 2014 and several learning opportunities).  Register Now!
Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Top 10 Reasons Why We’re Super Excited for 2014 Convention!

Girl Scout Convention (#gsc14) is right around the corner--October 16-19, to be exact--and we couldn't be more excited! From past experiences, we've made new friends, reconnected with the old, and created priceless memories that would for sure go down in the "Best of Girl Scout Convention" history books (if such a thing existed). The list is endless, but here are the top 10 reasons we're super excited for #gsc14:


10. Spectacular Salt Lake City! Convention is taking place in this vibrant city with amazing attractions and activities. From two history museums, theater, opera, ballet, and the symphony, to hundreds of restaurants and cafes featuring a variety of cuisines and price points—there’s a lot to see, do, and enjoy!

9.    Dancing. Singing. From the opening ceremony to the final night’s dance party, with tons of sing-a-longs and singers in between, there’s going to be lots of dancing and singing—and lots of reasons to dance and sing!

8.    Endless inspiration and entertainment. The chance to rub elbows with and get inspired by an amazing roster of speakers, entertainers, and accomplished women, men, and girls—news makers, leaders, policy makers, the ten National Young Women of Distinction, and celebrities from across the country and around the world—who will converge to celebrate and advocate on behalf of girls.

7.    Outdoor recreation galore. Explore the natural wonders of Utah! Visitors can enjoy golfing, biking, and hiking in the magnificent mountain areas, which, in October, are bursting with beautiful autumn colors.

6.    The Hall of Experiences. We’ve planned a lot of interactive, affordable, and inspiring fun for families, troops, and day trippers! Want to climb a treehouse? Meet the Harlem Globetrotters? Hear from esteemed experts? Meet Girl Scouts and Girl Guides from all over the globe? Try your hand at LPGA mini-golf? Reunite with fellow alumnae? Learn a new tip or two for your troop? Then join us for a day or three in the Hall of Experiences!

5.    Five Fabulous Theme Dinners on Saturday. Based on beloved Girl Scout program topics—“Imagine Your STEM Future,” “Fit & Focused,” “Dollars & Sense,” “Outdoor Extravaganza,” and “Celebrating Cultural Arts”—these immersive events (including a full sit-down meal) will have you celebrating with your peers, feeling inspired by the speakers, and reconnecting with your inner girl. By the end, you’ll have feasted on plenty of delicious food for thought, been given a gift bag of goodies, and be empowered to take action when you return back to your community!

4.    Girl Scout History Conference—Discover, Connect, ARCHIVES IN ACTION! Whether you’re a volunteer, staff, alumna, or supporter of Girl Scouts, you won’t want to miss this year’s Girl Scout History Conference (October 14–16, just before the start of convention) for an opportunity to learn about our rich ties to U.S. and world history. While these conferences are always history in the making, this year is guaranteed to be especially noteworthy because Stacy A. Cordery, a writer who penned a fascinating and thoroughly researched biography of Juliette Gordon Low, will deliver the keynote address.

3.    Girl Scout University. Back by popular demand, Girl Scout University is again offering many interactive, thought-provoking, and fun learning workshops. Our top-notch facilitators have created hands-on learning that is far from school like. Be the first to learn new tips and techniques to enhance your mentoring of girls and broaden your own overall skillset. Workshops start on Wednesday, the day before convention kicks off!

2.    Girl Scout Leadership Institute (GSLI). A team of Girl Scouts has planned everything for this unbelievable conference that presents girls ages 14 and older with three days of leadership skill-building activities tied to the Girl Scout Leadership Experience (GSLE). For many girls, GSLI is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to work with other girls on solutions to issues they’re passionate about and create action plans so that they are ready to make an impact when they return home. Through GSLI, each girl has the opportunity to make new friends and develop important skills—all while having fun!

And the number one reason we’re super excited for 2014 convention is…

1.    The chance to discover all the great things Girl Scouts do, to connect with friends old and new, and to take action to help girls change the world!




Let's Convention! To learn more and register, go to www.girlscouts.org/convention.
Monday, August 11, 2014

Get up. Get active. Play GirlSports. Win big!

Hey, you! How do you get in the game? Are you a rock star goalie who guarantees nothing hits your team’s net, or a track champ who helped your relay team get the gold? Girls across America are getting out and getting active, lacing up those sneakers and playing some of their favorite sports. Are you one of them? Show off your skills in our new challenge!

Through GirlSports, a partnership between Girl Scouts and Nestle, we’re dedicated to showcasing girls like you—girls who know the importance of staying healthy through physical activity. After all, the benefits of exercising and playing sports are endless. Not only will you maintain a healthy heart and stay fit, but through our GirlSports challenge, you can win BIG!

Here’s how to participate:
  • Upload a creative photo to the GSUSA Facebook pageof you staying active through sports.
  • Rally your friends and family to vote on your photo.

Pretty easy, right?

Keeping in line with the sports theme, we’ll be picking three winners of the GirlSports challenge—third, second, and first place, or bronze, silver, and gold, if you will. These champs will win:
·         First place: $300 gift card plus GirlSports merchandise bundle
·         Second place: $150 gift card plus GirlSports merchandise bundle
·         Third place: GirlSports merchandise bundle

So what are you waiting for? Get up. Get active. Play GirlSports. Win big!