Results tagged “e-council” from GSSA Leader Blog: The Virtual Volunteer

 

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When we did realignment between the councils in 2007, we found that our volunteers, parents, and constituents wanted quick access to information.   That information ranged from how to do things (which is why we created this Virtual Volunteer blog), to timelines, deadlines, and programs available. 

Our program opportunities and Other Opportunities change daily, so moving all this information to the internet made sense.   Our website, www.girlscoutssa.org, is not just for the troop leader and service unit managers, it is for you, too.   It allows you to know what is going on, understand how the program builds girls of courage, character and confidence, and for us to test ideas and program suggestions.

Our GSSA Weekly e-newsletter contains the latest information about new programs, events, upcoming deadlines, and other information to make your Girl Scout's experience a success. 

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You are also welcome to follow us on Facebook, where we post last-minute opportunities that we hear about, run the occasional contest, and receive opportunities for participation from other troops across the country!

In addition to our weekly e-newsletter, we have a full-time staff person who is available to you to respond to your questions, concerns, and other issues.   She works across the council and is the expert on Safety Activity checkpoints, how to deal with difficult parents, and how to effectively run a Girl Scout troop.   If you have questions or concerns that need answers, please call Cheryl Miller, our volunteer training and communications manager.  Her phone number is 334-312-0433.   She is a great resource for you and works with volunteers -- all day, every day.

We are in transition as we get our new software, E-Council, up and running.   If you are a returning volunteer with a troop, give E-Council a try.   I had someone say last week that this is the best thing she has seen in years.   We are still working on the program module, so stay tuned for that segment to be live.   We will continue to ask for the Hold Harmless forms to be done on paper, so we can track them.   As we work our way into the software, we expect this to be online also, but not this year.

We want you to have access to the best resources available to make your troop and girl experience excellent.   You will find all types of resources on our website, www.girlscoutssa.org.   It does change on a daily basis with new program listings, so this is the real-time way to stay tuned to what all is going on.

We believe we have a great program year ahead. Please let us know if there are things we can do to assist you.

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We have some exciting changes on the horizon. I've spent the past two days working through the training modules for our new software, E-Council.   The other councils that use this sing praises about how easy and user friendly it is for parents and volunteers, and so far I have found that to be the case.  

 Soon, you will be able to go to our website, www.girlscoutssa.org, click on membership and renew your membership.   Or you can register for a council program or adult training.   It is very quick and easy to do.   The software will send messages with information on the program, or event to those who wind up registered.   As a troop leader, you can register the troop for an event by simply going on the software finding the event, pull up your troop roster and click through the girls that will be attending the event.   The bill is generated automatically.   You will be able to apply council program credits, as I understand it, for those programs or pay via your troop debit card.   I think you will like it!

The E-council software will be a tremendous way for you and for us to save time.   Currently, we do a lot of business taking telephone calls, and some of that involves negotiation about when the program registration was turned in and whether it was turned in by the deadline.   E-council won't allow you to register for an event, program, or training after the deadline.   It relies on today's technology, which means we will be using e-mails to communicate with you on whether you are in the program and what the additional directions are.  

We receive lots of complaints about how much of the council isn't online and don't have access other than a public library.   That is true in a few places, not many and we know where they are, so we will be working with those few locales to make this work for them.    Going forward, you will need to use your credit or debit card and your e-mail address.   I had someone tell me when I announced this at a summer meeting that they don't trust giving  out their credit card information online.   This has the same type of security for your credit card that any business maintains, so I don't believe that is something you need to spend much time worrying about.   This uses a credit card processor that has to comply with all the laws about offering those services.

I believe the new E-council program will be a great improvement for you as a parent, troop leader, service unit manager or someone who wants to know what is going on with the girls in Southern Alabama.   Those of you who have registered as an early bird  for 2013-2014 are already in the system as a registered member for the 2013-2014-membership year. We'll have more information on this as the dates of the rollout become established.  

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