January 2011 Archives

thin_mint_image.gifWe're so excited about the new Thin Mint Sprint patch program, we uploaded it to the website as quick as we could.  In the process, we may have forgotten to include the nifty training log for the Marathon and 5K patches. (Whoopsies!)  Thankfully, we have great volunteers to keep us straight.  Here's the Thin Mint Sprint patch program info... with the training log included this time.
Sunday, January 30 at 2pm watch Auburn Women's Basketball team take on South Carolina at Auburn Arena.  Celebrating National Girls and Women in Sports Day AND Girl Scout Day, the team is offering free admission with this attached flyer to this game.

A halftime performance by Auburn Wheelchair Basketball and a post-game autograph session with the Women's Basketball team adds to the fun.  Attendees are also encouraged to bring pet food to donate to benefit the Lee County Humane Society for Adopt-A-Pet Awareness.
The Energizer Keep Going® Hall of Fame is a national program that was created to honor every day people (including teens and kids!) with energetic spirit who strive to make a positive difference in their communities. The program looks for people who live with the same perseverance and determination as the Energizer Bunny -- people who inspire others with their unstoppable energy.

Nominees will be narrowed to a field of 100 semifinalists who will be honored in their hometowns.  Then, the judges will select nine finalists, and the Energizer Bunny's Facebook fans will vote on the 10th. All ten finalists' names and stories will be posted online.  At that point, America will be given a chance to select the inductee through an online vote. The voting will take place beginning April 4, 2011, and continuing through May 14, 2011. The Energizer Keep Going® Hall of Fame inductee will attend a special induction ceremony at the Energizer Keep Going® Hall of Fame in St. Louis, Mo. The inductee will also receive a $10,000 cash award and an additional $5,000 will be donated to the charity of his/her choice. Each finalist will also get $1,000 donated to the charity of his/her choice.

Nominations are being accepted now through Friday, February 4 at www.energizer.com/halloffame <https://mail.blickandstaff.com/exchweb/bin/redir.asp?URL=http://www.energizer.com/halloffame> .
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The Bay Shore Ballet has extended a special invitation for Girl Scouts to see Hansel and Gretel on Saturday, April 9th at 2pm at the Fairhope Civic Center.

Girl Scouts are given preferred seating at this performance and will enjoy some special time back stage with the director and cast.  Bring your camera and take advantage of the wonderful scenery and costumes for a troop picture.

The Suite Shoppe will be open at intermission for refreshments and you can also do some shopping at the Ballet Boutique.

Tickets cost $5 per person, and reservations can be made via email to vkoneill1@aol.com.  Checks should be made out to Bay Shore Ballet and mailed to Vicki O'Neill, 22163 Main Street, Fairhope, AL 36532.

liz_brent.jpgWhen I logged on to my computer this morning, I had a report from Cindy Connell Schafer, our ABC cookie representative, with an initial summary report of where we are with the cookie sale this morning.   Along with it was a question asking whether our volunteers received the services they needed.   Also, how could we all improve training, so we can correct any issues going forward?   I know there were a number of instances where Cindy was directly involved with our volunteers trying to get the cookie system to work.   She also noted she was going back through all our data to be sure our girls received the incentives they had earned.

Don't we love quality customer service?   I know that, behind the scenes, staff are scrambling around trying to get booth locations (as many of you are), making certain parts of the system we service are working adequately and responding to a litany of questions.   Be assured we are working hard to make the hard work you do with your girls easier as the cookies arrive and the booth sales commence.   The power of girls is simply astonishing!   Thanks for all you do to make amazing things happen!

Back by popular demand, Wild Adventures is pleased to announce the return of the Spring Scout Adventure, May 14-15, 2011.  Wild Adventures has designed a weekend adventure designed especially for  Girl Scouts from across the Southeast.
The weekend begins with camping on Friday night.  Saturday includes a fun-filled day in the Park, complete with catered buffet exclusively for scouts, a bottomless soda wristband for the day, with an event patch, all for $39.99 per person (+ tax).  Saturday night, there will be a Special Guest around the campfire in the camping area.  The weekend continues on Sunday with a second fun-filled day in the Park.  Splash Island Water Park admission is also included both days!
BONUS - Receive one complimentary Scout Adventure package per 15 paid attendees. (Advance purchase required.)
BONUS - Receive one FREE parking ticket (a savings of $10 per car) per three paid attendees. (Advance purchase required.)
The final details have not yet been released, but watch the Group Events page at www.wildadventures.com.   If you prefer, call 229 - 219 - 7144, to speak with a Group Sales Representative.

liz_brent.jpgI was on a conference call with other Girl Scout CEOs.   We were having a spirited discussion on what works with today's girls and what doesn't work.    One of them said they had a reception where everyone who attended who had been a Girl Scout was clearly identified.   She said it was stunning how many in the room had been Girl Scouts and how it lifted them up.   It was a fundraiser and simply by seeing how many had participated in the program in relation to their current job, it was a clear message of how Girl Scouts have developed leadership skills for many years.

Help make a difference for kids in need

Montgomery's new One Place Family Justice Center, which helps victims of domestic violence (mostly women and children) during the critical time immediately after they seek a safe haven after becoming victims of crime, is requesting donations of new or gently used stuffed animals and books for its special children's room where kids can stay while their parent is seeking assistance.  The center has a goal that no child will leave without a something special to take with them and has asked Girl Scouts to assist in the collection effort.
Our girls have been eager to support the success of One Place, and one troop even decorated a beautiful Christmas tree for the children's room. If you or your troop would like to help, you may drop off your items at either the Montgomery or Mobile Service Centers.  They will be greatly appreciated by One Place and the children it serves.


at Helen  Wood Park on the Western Shore of Mobile  Bay

Saturday and  Sunday, January 22-23, 8am-5pm   

Come for as long as you  can, whenever you want. Be prepared to get muddy.  Must be over 14  years old to participate.  Under 18 years must be accompanied by an  adult.  

Volunteers will be placing  bagged oyster shell in predetermined locations near the shoreline, creating  over a quarter-mile of oyster reef.  Most bags weigh 10 pounds.   Helen Wood Park is located just north of the Dog River Bridge off Dauphin  Island Parkway.  Please carpool as parking is limited.

For more  information, including parking information and maps, click here <http://www.trailblz.info/ACF/gateway/21.22533.aspx> .

This project will  serve to kick-off the 100-1000 Restore Coastal Alabama Partnership,  a coalition of public and private entities working together to  restore Alabama's coastal areas, making us more resilient to impacts  from hurricanes, oil spills, and climate change. Learn more about the amazing oyster and all the benefits  it brings to our coastal environment at www.100-1000.org <http://www.100-1000.org/> .

It is possible that the project will  be completed on Saturday.  Check the website Saturday night for  updates.

If possible,  please RSVP to info@joinacf.org.   Hope to see you this weekend!

We are looking for an individual with a successful track record in community development for the position of Outreach Programs Manager.  This position is responsible for developing an outreach strategy for the entire 30 counties that comprise Girl Scouts of Southern Alabama. The Outreach Programs manager translates the recruitment strategy into operational goals to maximize girl and adult volunteer members.

This position is exciting, challenging, and one of the best possible ways to make a difference in the lives of girls and adult volunteers throughout our entire council.

For more information, please see the position description from our Forms page.
We've noticed that some of your troop checks, used to pay fall product and event registrations, are not imprinted with the correct council or troop information.  For legal purposes, "Girl Scouts of Southern Alabama, Tr# ____ " should appear on troop checks along with the address of one of your leadership team members.  The council's mailing address should NOT be on troop checks.  Also, to better safeguard troop funds, one team member should carry the checkbook and another should receive the statement or have online access to view troop account activity.  
If you have any questions, please contact Cheryl Miller, ext. 2302.
Are you a nurse who like the outdoors?  Does your daughter want to attend camp for free?  Kamp Kiwanis is looking for nurses for summer resident camp. We need one registered nurse per week, June 13-July 8, 2011, to serve as camp nurse.  Duties include dispensing medication to campers, assisting campers who are ill, etc.  In exchange for your time volunteering, your daughter will be able to spend one week at Kamp Kiwanis free of charge. If you are interested in volunteering or would like more information, please contact Dana Jones, Kamp Kiwanis resident camp director, at djones@girlscoutssa.org.

liz_brent.jpgOne of my favorite signs that I found in someone's office when I started here was A GIRL IS WATCHING.   We should all remember that all day every day.   I chatted with our staff about that this week; we always need to think in that context.   When I arrived I heard horror stories about the chaos of cookies.   It is hard to describe to someone who hasn't seen it done, especially from the delivery side of the program.   What I was more surprised at was a call I received about volunteers throwing cookies at each other because of the door they wanted at a Wal-mart.    This didn't happen on just one weekend, but two weekends in a row.   We had some discussion about why this happened; how we could correct it.   But the most important part of that challenge for me is to remind everyone, when it comes to the cookie program A GIRL IS WATCHING.   As we struggle with how to best shape the future generation, we can't be complacent about how our behaviors impact those of the children around us.

liz_brent.jpgIt's COOKIE TIME!   I was talking to some friends over the holidays about the cookie sale.   Actually, when you aren't in the middle of it, it is truly amazing.   It is one of the world's most successful entrepreneurial programs and actually was a precursor to most of what they call entrepreneurship in today's college classrooms.   Aren't there some things we could teach them?

Our goal this year is to exceed last year's cookie sale, which was excellent.   We have about 100 more girls involved, so that should help.   Last year, because of the success of the sale, we were able to buy more equipment for our camp properties, repair and replace a few roofs, correct the roads at Camp Scoutshire Woods and add program materials for girls to use and learn from.

So far, the sale is going well.   The press reps have done an OUTSTANDING job getting the media kits to the media.   It was amazing how many articles and television spots we have had so far!   Thank you to those girls and their families for EXCELLENT work getting the word out often and early.

We are trying to put more people behind the scenes to assist in making this as smooth a sale as possible.   But, if you have good ideas on ways it can be increased and enhanced, let us know.

cookies_support_troops.jpgJust what does a $3.50 box of Girl Scout Cookies provide?  (other than eating pleasure, of course!)


Life Skills

Through the Girl Scout Cookie Program girls develop five essential skills:

·       Goal setting

·       Decision making

·       Money management

·       People skills

·       Business ethics



$0.35 - $0.64 Per box goes directly into the troop treasury for troop activities, trips, service projects, camping, pins, badges and troop supplies.


$0.30 Per box provides individual girl awards, including resident camp scholarships, Girl Scout store items of the girl's choice, program activities of the girl's choice, Destinations assistance, 800 Club awards from cookie supplier.  All awards are cumulative.


$1.604 Per box helps fund delivery of Girl Scout program to girls; financial assistance for girls; adult volunteer training, materials and support; communications; program activities; and maintenance/development of council program and service sites.


Membership                        35%

Program                             23%

Property Support and          4.5%

Capital Expenses

Adult Development              5%

Communication                   4.5%

Fund Development              1.6%

General Administration        13.6%

Resident Camp                    5.5%


$0.91 Per box to the cookie supplier to cover cost of producing packaging and promotion of cookies and related materials.


$0.029 Per box for direct council expenses for the cookie sale


What other package of cookies does more for only $3.50?



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