November 2010 Archives


An idea that has been put forward is to allow councils to charge a membership fee, in addition to the current $12 fee that goes to GSUSA for national membership. The additional membership fees charged by councils would be used by the councils to directly support their council, i.e. to support and develop properties, girl pathway programs, etc.

Should councils be allowed to set an additional fee to support girls in their local areas? Should it be waived for financial need, as is the national membership fee? What do you think? As always, we appreciate your input!

Girl Scouts of the United States of America

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Girl Scouts of the USA introduced a revitalized Girl Scout brand this summer.  Now, we have "brand" new nametags to reflect the changes (get it? wink, wink).  I think the nametag without the metal framing is super sleek.  Which one do you like?  Check them out on our online shop.
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liz_brent.jpgOccasionally, I meet a volunteer, and I'm left with the impression that it is all about the leader.   Twice in the past 3 days I have had an encounter with an adult who was a Girl Scout during her entire school career.   In both instances, these individuals said they would not have stayed involved, had it not been for that special adult who served as their leader.   They had a relationship with the adult, who was a role model for them.   And, in some instances, they pursued their career because of the influence of this adult role model. 

It is important to remember, children imitate what we do.   Having worked with college students for 30 years, I sometimes don't realize my vocabulary might not be what some of the girls can relate to and understand.   Or worse, sometimes they understand more of what is going on around them than we realize.   I heard of an incident last week where the adult volunteers had some differences of opinions.   This happens with all of us, but it isn't something we need to involve the girls in.   I do this job because I believe I am laying a foundation for the future. I believe we are building future responsible citizens who will give back and be contributing members of society.   I do this because I believe what I do is, in a small way, an investment in the health and happiness of others.  

Why do you do it?

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The Girl Scouts Global Action patch was developed in partnership with the World Association of Girl Guides and Girl Scouts (WAGGGS).  This is an exciting and enriching way for Girl Scout Daisies to Ambassadors to participate in realizing the United Nations' Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) which aim to reduce extreme poverty and impact major world concerns by 2015.  

By participating in the Global Action patch activities, girls can learn, in a fun and educational way, about serious global issues affecting girls, young women, and their communities. Each Girl Scout who completes activities will join in WAGGGS' international movement of 10 million girls who together are advocating for themselves and others, both locally and globally--one of the Take Action outcomes (PDF) detailed in the Girl Scout Leadership Experience.

Earning requirements for this patch can be found at www.girlscouts.org/who_we_are/global/global_action_patch/ <http://www.girlscouts.org/who_we_are/global/global_action_patch/> .


Currently, delegates to the National Council are elected just in time to review proposals, get feedback from their local council members, and then attend the national council session.

The proposal is that the National Council amend Article IV (The National Council), Section 5 (formula for delegates) of the Constitution of the Girl Scouts of the United States of America to facilitate delegates being elected by local councils two years preceding the National Council, and serving for a term of three years. This proposal supports the idea that if national council delegates are elected earlier they can be better prepared for their roles, and be involved in helping shape the agenda for the National Council Session.

What do you think? Please leave a comment or send an email to communications@girlscoutssa.org. Thank you for your input!

Rockets in an outdoor museum in Huntsville, Al...

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Back by popular demand! Girl Scouts of Southern Alabama is planning a mini-Destination to Huntsville, Alabama and the Space and Rocket Center and it is not for the faint of heart!  This action packed trip offers something for everyone!

 

Friday, June 10: Destination Huntsville begins Friday evening at the Sci-Quest Museum. Enjoy the 100+ interactive programs and complete the Spa Science Program. More info:  http://www.sci-quest.org/index/php

Saturday, June 11: Breakfast at the Sci-Quest Museum and then off to the Botanical Gardens for a visit. Enjoy the nation's largest seasonal butterfly house and a unique children's garden as part of "Wings, Warts, and Wonders". More info: http://www.hsvbg.org/index/php

 

After enjoying the gardens, travel to the U. S. Space and Rocket Center for the 2-day New Horizons program. Features include hands on Science lab a 3D movie, build and launch a rocket, a trip in the Mars Simulator, the Space Shot and the G Force Accelerator. More info: http://www.spacecamp.com/museum/groups/newhorizons

 

Sunday, June 12: Our destination ends at 2:00 PM and troops are free to do more exploring or head home!

 

This all -girl trip is open to rising Juniors -Ambassadors, leaders, and moms (Sorry, no men or tagalongs).  All participants must be registered and adults must be registered and approved. Troops must furnish sufficient adults to meet the ration of two per: 16 Juniors, 20 Cadettes, 24 Older girls. Individual members may register with their moms.

 

The $160 fee (may use Cookie Bucks) covers all programs  and admissions, five meals( Saturday  breakfast-Sunday lunch), overnight on the floor at the Sci-Quest, overnight in the Habitat (bed and shower) at the USSRC, IMAX movie, event t-shirt, event patch, and the services of two experienced council leaders. Not included: transportation and dinner Friday night.

 

To reserve your place, send an Event Registration Form and $25 non-refundable deposit to the Mobile Service Center by January 14, 2011. The remainder of the money will be due April 1, 2011. All monies are non-refundable. This is based on 50 minimum participants and 100 maximum participants. Questions? Contact Mary Anne Brutkiewicz at extension 1202.

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Do you ever wonder what we do all day?   I was asked to share some of what goes on in a typical day at the council office.   And the answer is that there isn't a "typical week," but here's a sample of how varied any week can be.

On Monday, I was in the office working on board materials, which were late.   I had arrived early, and a few minutes before 9 a.m. I heard a great deal of commotion upstairs.   The next thing I knew I had folks in my office; they had turned on the heating unit and smoke started billowing out from everyone air duct.   We called 911, I returned upstairs with a fire extinguisher, in case we needed to put a fire out.   I sent most everyone outside to their cars with their laptops, since we don't want to be losing equipment.   The fire department arrived, and found nothing on fire, but it was clear something was smoking, so they told us to call our HVAC people.   While outside with the fire chief, I found some of the staff posing on the fire truck, so I joined in.   No need to miss a good opportunity, when presented. 


In the middle of the smoke episode, someone called to see if we were interested in the donation of a 1979 Volkswagen Superbeetle convertible.  

A bit later a volunteer came in and wanted to discuss leaving a geocache at the office.

I had to discuss some employment issues with a staff person.

I returned to my paperwork, trying to get minutes, reports, financials and agendas out to the board.   I was only in the office during the morning because I had to drive to Camp Humming Hills on Monday afternoon.   I looked over the camp, which we recently had drum chopped so we can replant there.   I spent the night at the ranger's cabin at Humming Hills because I needed to be in Pinckard on Tuesday morning at 9am.


Tuesday morning, two of us interviewed two potential board members.   At lunch we met the Boy Scout executive for lunch, discussing possible Eagle projects for Humming Hills.   It is a 3.5-hour return drive from Dothan to Mobile, so most of the afternoon was spent in the car.


Wednesday I picked up a staff member at the office at 7:30 a.m. so I could meet heavy equipment guys at Camp Scoutshire Woods.   We arrived early, so the ranger and I went over other projects he is working on and equipment he needs.   We spent time with the bulldozer operator on how he is going to work on the roads, so we can manage the erosion problems there.   They had some good advice on who to contact to give us some expert advice on the lake.   We also need to cut down a few dead trees there.

We return from Scoutshire to do some work.   At this point I am returning e mails from Monday afternoon, Tuesday (because I was out of the office all day) and Wednesday morning.   I usually read the e-mails on my smart phone, but many responses are too long for the phone.


Thursday will be a "normal" day in the office.   Friday morning we will get all the materials gathered up for the board meeting, drive to where we are holding it.   The board meeting will start at lunch on Friday and extend through dinner Friday evening.   Then it will resume Saturday morning at breakfast, ending Saturday at noon.   I will stop by the camporee at Camp  Scoutshire Saturday afternoon.   Sunday I will probably check on a Boy Scout working on a boathouse at Camp Sid.

 

Through all of this, I missed our cookie trainings. I also missed a meeting in Montgomery that was scheduled after my calendar was set to meet folks in the Wiregrass, so I sent a substitute to that one.


This is a typical week: more meetings and events than hours in the day.   This week I will log about 20 hours in the car, 1 breakfast, 2 lunches and 2 dinners on business. It's all worth it, though, if it enables girls to participate in Girl Scouting and benefit from our programming.


Liz Brent, Ph.D.

CEO


Here's an idea that is being discussed as a possible agenda item for the national conference: rolling memberships.

Rolling memberships would allow memberships to extend for a year from the date of registration. The October 1st membership year concept would no longer exist. This proposal supports the idea that members would always get a full calendar year membership for the fee.

What do you think? Is this a good idea?  Why, or why not?  Thanks for your input!

yellow ribbon

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Veterans Day is Thursday, November 11, 2010. Youth Service America compiled the following ideas and resources for service projects from their partners.

 

We'd love to see pictures if your troop does anything for Veterans Day!  You can always post photos and videos to our facebook page www.facebook.com/girlscoutssa or e-mail them to communications@girlscoutssa.org.

10 Ways to Get Ur Good On to Support the Troops

  1. On Veterans Day, plan a service project in honor of military members and invite them to join you. Mission Serve has lots of potential projects listed: www.missionserve.org/pages/plan-a-project
  2. Rock a yellow ribbon! Request a free yellow ribbon from Yellow Ribbon America and wear it during November. www.yellowribbonamerica.org
  3. Gather a group of friends and make holiday cards to send to troops. The website A Million Thanks has letter drop off locations across America; find one near you: http://amillionthanks.org/Drop_Off_Locations.asp
  4. Visit, thank and honor hospitalized veterans at a Department of Veterans Affairs medical center, clinic or nursing home. Find out about their student volunteer program here: http://www.volunteer.va.gov/StudentProgram.asp
  5. Bake cookies! Is one of your family members deployed right now or do you have a friend with a deployed family member? Bake cookies to send to them. Treats for Soldiers has tips on how to ship the cookies. www.treatthetroops.org/tips.htm
  6. Halloween is over and you probably have a lot of Halloween candy left over and your candy can go to a good use. Several organizations are currently collecting candy donations to add to care packages they send to deployed soldiers. Visit Operation Gratitude at www.halloweencandybuyback.com or Operation Shoebox at www.operationshoebox.com
  7. Have a cell phone drive and send collected phones to Cell Phones for Soldiers. They send the donated cell phones to ReCellular, which pays them for each donated phone - the money provides an hour of talk time to soldiers abroad. www.cellphonesforsoldiers.com/becomeDropoff.html
  8. Host a "Support the Troops" drive at your school and collect items to send to the organization Give 2 the Troops. View the list of items they can accept; there is a huge variety of items you can collect! www.give2thetroops.org/items.htm
  9. Become a USO volunteer! They have volunteer opportunities in the US and Europe. You can help out at a special event, cheer for troops at a homecoming, man a front desk, or provide a listening ear to a soldier. Visit the site for more volunteer info: www.uso.org/ways-to-volunteer.aspx
  10. Help collect and preserve the remembrances of American war veterans and civilian workers who supported them by participating in the Library of Congress's Veterans History Project. www.loc.gov/vets/vets-home.html

Here is the 2010 Veterans Day video by the Department of Veterans Affairs

 


liz_brent.jpgI attended an event a few weeks ago and spent some time walking along with some girls.   One girl was saying to another that her mother was gone, so she and her siblings were going back into foster care.   It was a matter of fact type of conversation, and clearly, this had happened before.   She wasn't very old, and as I walked along, I was grateful for the stability of my own family.   Some of these things we just take for granted.   I have to believe that Girl Scouts is an important and stabilizing part of her life.   Never under estimate the extent to which you influence the lives of the girls you touch.

 

Liz Brent, Ph.D.

CEO

Many councils believe that the Gold Award has the prestige and deserves the same level of recognition as that of a BSA Eagle Scout. They believe that those who earn the Gold Award need to be consistently called by a single name that is instantly recognizable as one of the highest achievement.  They are proposing that the name Gold Girl Scout be used, and that we no longer use "Gold Award recipient" to describe our Gold Girl Scouts, because they do not receive the award, they earn it.

Let us know your thoughts! Leave a comment or email us at communications@girlscoutssa.org.

Weigh in on ideas that are being discussed in the Girl Scout Community! There are many new ideas circulating.  We don't know which ones may be developed into proposals for the national convention, but we want to open the conversation here in our council so we can be sure everybody's opinion is heard. Over the next few posts, we will write about ideas being passed around and ask for your input.  We look forward to hearing from you!  You can either leave a comment on the blog entry, or e-mail us at communications@girlscoutssa.org.

Thanks for participating!

Field Executives' areas change.   With some staffing changes in the membership area, there have been modifications to the field executives' territories.    Cheryl Pierce Ankrom will assume the territory Marcia Willhite previously held, with a few changes.    In addition, we made a couple of shifts to better reflect travel patterns.  Those counties with a *star reflect a staff change.   Please see the list by county.

Just a reminder, the field executives' primary role in the council is to recruit new adult volunteers and girl members.   They are supposed to be out of the office in their territory.   If you have questions or concerns, Cheryl Miller serves as the council-wide volunteer services liaison and can answer all questions regarding policies, program registrations, fall product orders, cookie program and safety activity checkpoints.   She can be reached in the office at extension 2302 or on her cell at 334-312-0433.   You can call either council service center office, put in the extension, and the phone system will connect you to the appropriate office.   The council service center office numbers are 334-272-9164 and 251-344-3330. 

County

Primary Field Executive

Office Extension/Phone Number

Autauga

Jennifer Sakey

2104

Baldwin*

Cheryl Pierce Ankrom

1103

Barbour    

Becci Benson

334-494-0616           

Bullock       

Rhonda Fields

334-332-2411

Butler*

Cheryl Pierce Ankrom

1103

Choctaw  

Cheryl Pierce Ankrom

1103

Chambers

Rhonda Fields

334-332-2411

Clark

Cheryl Pierce Ankrom

1103

Coffee

Becci Benson

334-494-0616

Conecuh

Cheryl Pierce Ankrom

1103

Coosa

Rhonda Fields

334-332-2411

Covington*

Becci Benson

334-494-0616

Crenshaw*

Jennifer Sakey

2104

Dale

Becci Benson

334-494-0616

Dallas*

Cheryl Pierce Ankrom

1103                                           

Elmore

Rhonda Fields

334-332-2411

Escambia*

Cheryl Pierce Ankrom

1103

Geneva

Becci Benson

334-494-0616

Henry

Becci Benson

334-494-0616

Houston

Becci Benson

334-494-0616

Lee

Rhonda Fields

334-332-2411

Lowndes

Jennifer Sakey

2104

Mobile

Kalishia May/Cheryl Pierce Ankrom

1104/1103

Macon

Rhonda Fields

334-332-2411

Monroe

Cheryl Pierce Ankrom

1103

Montgomery

Jennifer Sakey

2104

Pike*

Jennifer Sakey

2104

Tallapoosa

Rhonda Fields

334-332-2411

Washington

Kalishia May

1104

Wilcox

Cheryl Pierce Ankrom

1103

WhosthatGirl.jpgExcellent news! The Girl Scout Research Institute is celebrating its 10th Anniversary tomorrow, November, 4, with an exciting event "Who's that Girl? Self-Image in the 21st Century". This event will take place in New York City but we can join via Ustream at 5:30 p.m. central standard time when the panel begins. At the event, GSUSA will be releasing new findings from a new study on girls and social media, including this refreshing statistic:

"92 percent of girls would give up all of their social networking friends if it meant keeping their best friend." - Girl Scout Research Institute, 2010

 

On the Ustream, guests will be hearing from a panel of adult and girl culture experts including Emme, supermodel and founder, Body Image Council, Maya Enista, CEO, mobilize.org, Gabi Gregg, MTV Twitter Jockey, Peggy Orenstein, Contributing Writer, New York Times Magazine; and Janie Victoria Ward, professor of education, Simmons College. We will also hear from a panel of girls from the New York City area.

Share this Ustream link with friends: http://www.ustream.tv/channel/whosthatgirl

All Service Unit Cookie Chairs, Troop Cookie Chairs, and Troop Leaders are invited to attend one of the Cookie Training Conferences listed below.  Get all of the details on the Program and Events calendar.

 

 

·         Sunday, November 7 at 1 p.m.

Volunteer Center, Montgomery

·         Sunday, November 7 at 3 p.m.

Volunteer Center, Montgomery

·         Monday, November 8 at 12 p.m.

Volunteer Center, Montgomery

·         Monday, November 8 at 6 p.m.

Volunteer Center, Montgomery

·         Tuesday, November 9 at 6 p.m.

Enterprise

·         Wednesday, November 10 at 10 a.m.

Dothan

·         Thursday, November 11 at 6 p.m.

Town Hall, Grove Hill

·         Friday, November 12 at 12 p.m.

Volunteer Center, Mobile

·         Friday, November 12 at 6 p.m.

Loxley United Methodist Church, Loxley

·         Saturday, November 13 at 10 a.m.

Volunteer Center, Mobile

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