Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Girl Scouts Embrace Refugee Neighbors and Celebrate Difference

Girl Scouts have a long tradition of giving back to their communities and raising their voices to advocate for issues and ideas important to them. From dispelling myths and misconceptions about immigrants and refugees to mobilizing support to make sure refugee children have warm clothing, Girl Scouts are making a real difference far and wide.

In honor of World Refugee Day today, check out how these go-getters across the country are leading with empathy and befriending others.

Multiple Troops, Girl Scouts of Orange County

Recently, nine Girl Scouts hosted a Ramadan celebration for 100 refugees from various countries, including Syria, Afghanistan, and Iraq. The girls provided dinner and gave families gently used clothing and household goods to help them settle in. 

Nidhi, Girl Scouts North Carolina Coastal Pines 

Using her family’s experience as inspiration, Nidhi wrote a novella about the lives of young immigrants in the United States, Journeys of Hope and Fear, to earn her Girl Scout Gold Award. In particular, she focused on overturning stereotypes about immigrants.

Learn more about Nidhi’s project. 

Julianna, Girl Scouts of Eastern Massachusetts

Syrian refugees who were driven from their homes by civil war received sweaters, socks, blankets,  hats, and scarves as a result of Julianna’s Gold Award project. She worked with the Karam Foundation to distribute hundreds of knit, crochet, and sewn clothing and blankets to refugees, primarily children at the Al Salam School in Reyhanli, Turkey.

Learn more about Julianna’s project.

Natalie, Girl Scouts of Southeastern Michigan 

After learning that refugees living in Michigan were having difficulties adapting to U.S. society, Gold Award Girl Scout Natalie started educating her community about the obstacles they face and how people can help. 

Lily, Girl Scouts of the Florida Panhandle 

Lily worked to give Leon County students more of a say in the community by encouraging conversations about how to prevent bullying and strengthen relationships that promote peace, equality, truth, and unity—both among students and within the community at large.

Learn more about Lily’s project. 

Jenna, Girl Scouts Western Pennsylvania 

After witnessing the Syrian refugee crisis as an exchange student in Italy, Jenna was determined to raise awareness about the struggles that people from developing countries face. Her Girl Scout Gold Award project connected U.S. and Ethiopian students through letters and included a summer reading program focused on the global impact of refugee crises.

Troops 3119 and 3357, Girl Scouts of Orange County 

To combat hate and promote conversation about the similarities between Muslims and Americans of different faiths, Muslim Girl Scouts from Troops 3119 and 3357 hosted an Open Mosque Day to educate others on what Islam is all about. The event was so successful, the troops held a second Open Mosque Day a few months later!

Learn more about Troops 3119 and 3357.