Wednesday, September 26, 2012

More Dads are Taking Girl Scouts Volunteer Roles

The Girl Scouts began 100 years ago with a goal of bringing girls out of isolated home environments and into community service and the outdoors.

In Texas, the San Angelo Standard-Times reports that today, Girl Scouts is a diverse organization, providing leadership opportunities to its membership of 3.2 million girls and adult volunteers, with more than 59 million alumnae in the U.S.

While the organization is predominantly female, the organization has a few male volunteers and employees.

San Angelo's Joe Grossheim started as a volunteer for the Girl Scouts 17 years ago when his oldest daughter, Gina, was in her first year as a Girl Scout Junior. With two daughters in Girl Scouts, Grossheim knew he was not making a short-term investment. But when his third daughter, Bailee, was born eight years ago, he realized he had a few more years of Girl Scouts ahead of him.

"I thought I was going to be done; then Bailee came along," he said.

Having his daughters be part of an organization has been beneficial, he said.

"Kids are going to make mistakes, but if they've had some leadership experience, it can make a difference," he said. "If you can make a difference in even one girl's life, to me, it's worth all the time and effort."

A fairly new volunteer, Tom Hahn, has been helping the troop his daughter, Emily, belongs to for the past several years.

As the troop's cookie coordinator, he likened the selection of cookie booths to the NFL draft, said James Pidgeon, community development executive (west) for the Girl Scouts of Central Texas.

"It was fun to watch him," Pidgeon said, "watching him come to understand the strategy of picking the right location for cookie booths, at peak times."