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Friday, June 14, 2024

Creating the Leaders of Tomorrow

You don’t have to look far to find a Girl Scout
. From those selling cookies at your local supermarket or a friend who grew up going to camp, you’re bound to run into one. However, Girl Scouting is more than just cookies or camp, it’s a movement that creates strong leaders and conscientious citizens. A wealth of programs, called The Girl Scout Leadership Experience, are available to Girl Scouts and offers immersion in STEM, adventure in the outdoors, development of an entrepreneurial mindset, and formation of crucial life skills.

We at Girl Scouts of Southern Arizona (GSSOAZ) believe that these opportunities to build courage, confidence, and character should be available to all girls in Southern Arizona, which is why we offer staff-supported programming to expand the Girl Scout Leadership Experience to all who may not have the opportunity to join a volunteer-led troop. Staff-supported programming occurs in many places, including elementary schools as an after-school program, and in group homes or juvenile court for those impacted by the justice system. The purpose of these programs is to uplift and enrich the lives of these kids, regardless of circumstance – and we are delighted to see positive outcomes and the blossoming confidence from the Girl Scouts who participate.

Childhood and the teenage years can be tough, especially when society tells girls they are ‘too much.’ Girl Scouting counters this sentiment by providing a place where their ideas are a worthy pursuit, their determination is fostered, and their brilliance is appreciated. We saw an incredible example of this determination when Caryna Torres, a Brownie from our staff-supported troop at CE Rose K-8 went above and beyond in her cookie sales, with striking clarity to meet her goals. Carynademonstrated a keen interest in developing her business skills, from carefully keeping track of her inventory to determining the pros and cons of various cookie prizes she could earn. Ultimately, Caryna decided that it would be more rewarding to earn a free week of Girl Scout Camp, compared to just one day at Universal Studios.

In true Girl Scout fashion, Caryna wants to share her success with her Girl Scout sisters. When she is old enough, she wants to use the skills she’s gained to give back to future Girl Scouts. She is hoping that one day she can join GSSOAZ as a program facilitator at CE Rose K-8 so that she can uplift future generations of Scouts to help them meet their goals too. She also hopes to work as a counselor at Camp Whispering Pines to give future Girl Scouts an amazing camp experience.

Caryna is just one example of the incredible girls in our council that when given the support, excel and become the bravest version of themselves. With the help of kind donors, passionate volunteers, and community partners, we aim to make Southern Arizona a place of opportunity and achievement for all girls. Today they are our youth, but tomorrow they are our leaders, our change makers, and our hope.


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