February 2011 Archives

liz_brent.jpgDo you have events planned for the spring?  Are you looking for something fun and different for your girls to experience?

I check the council events calendar each month, looking at programs I would like to attend on the weekends. If you haven't checked this listing lately, I am happy to tell you we have many, many things for our girls to explore. In fact, we did a report to the GSSA board of directors on the number of programs offered, and they are up 55% from last year! 

As I peruse the choices, there are some weekends where there are simply too many fun options from which to choose.    Many of these programs are a tribute to the organizations who work with us.   There is a wonderful tree planting program in the Tuskegee National Forest.   There's a new organization, the GulfQuest National Maritime Museum, which is doing a program on oil and its impact.   America's Junior Miss has changed its name to Distinguished Young Women, and it is always amazing to see how the contestants in that scholarship program relate to the troops who adopt them for their two week stay in Alabama.   There's a new program in Eufaula, visiting the Shorter Museum and National Wildlife Refuge there.   And there is the always a huge turnout for the Montgomery Biscuits camp-in, which is earlier this year and hopefully cooler for sleeping on the outfield.   The Wiregrass area even is having a Cinderella Ball.   There are too many choices, but what a great dilemma to have!  I hope you are able to go to some of these wonderful opportunities to learn and share time with your girls.

Hase kurz nach der Eiablage

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The Leukemia and Lymphoma Society is having their 3rd Annual Bunny Chase 5K and Family Fun Festival Saturday, April 23, from 8 a.m.-12 p.m. at the Medal of Honor Park in Mobile.


They are looking for some older Girl Scouts to help with face painting and hiding Easter eggs. If you or your troop would like to help, please let Erica Bass, programintern@girlscoutssa.org know by Friday, April 15.

 

Girl Scout troops are also invited to register and run in the 5K or 1-Mile Fun Run.  Register online at active.com.

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Be a part of the Thin  Mint Sprint!
Volunteer opportunities still exist for older girls and adults to help make this event a success! Volunteers are needed to pass out water, cheer runners on, help with the Health Expo, and provide an extra hand wherever needed. If you are willing and able to serve, please contact Mary Anne Brutkiewicz (800-239-6636, ext. 1202) by Thursday, February 24.


Editor's Note: Mary Anne "ain't too proud to beg," so if you need some cajoling, just give her a call!
So, here we are sitting around feeling like we've accomplished a lot.  The camp information is up, cookie sales are going well, the Thin Mint Sprint planning is coming right along ... and we get a call that the camp info that is up is from last summer!  

Certainly, that can't be, we thought.  So many of us have looked at the camp page and had a piece in getting the information out.  Certainly, not one of us realized it was last year's camp booklet.  

Well, that's the case.  For those of you who looked at the camp info over the last week and were busy planning out your summers around the sessions, we apologize.  The 2011 programs will be posted tonight, and we're so sorry for any confusion this created.

The plus side? If you were excited about the 2010 programs, just wait to see what's really in store for 2011!

lifesouth.JPGHelping people by donating blood

 

The Girl Scout Promise includes the phrase "to help people at all times" and one way the Girl Scouts of Southern Alabama will be doing that by hosting a blood drive with LifeSouth Community Blood Centers at the 2011 Thin Mint Sprint 5K Run/Walk Expo, Saturday, Feb. 26 at 8 a.m. at Langan Municipal Park.

 

The event is a fund-raiser to renovate the dilapidated bathhouse at Camp Scoutshire Woods and to support programs and scholarships for Girl Scouts in 30 counties across Southern Alabama. There is also a free Health Expo that's open to the public from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m.  There will be a LifeSouth Blood Drive taking place at the Health Expo from 8 a.m. to 12 p.m.  Each Girl Scout that is responsible for at least five donors donating at the blood drive will receive a patch.

 

Donating blood is one way to help save lives in the community. All blood donated with LifeSouth goes to hospitals on Alabama's Gulf Coast. Donors must 17, or 16 with parental permission, weigh a minimum of 110 pounds and be in good health. A photo ID is also needed.

 

Troops or individual girls that are interested in earning this patch should get a form at the Mobile Service Center or contact: Ashley Petroutson at aepetroutrson@lifesouth.org or 251-295-1709

Gold Award

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The National Young Women of Distinction (NYWOD) is an honor conferred by GSUSA on ten Girl Scout Gold Award recipients whose final project demonstrated extraordinary leadership, had a measurable and sustainable impact, and addressed s a local challenge that related to a national and/or global issue.

 

Any Girl Scout who completed her Gold Award between July 1, 2009 and December 31, 2010, is eligible to apply. Each NYWOD will receive a $3,000 scholarship and will be prominently and nationally recognized during the National Council Session/Convention in Houston, Texas in November 2011. Each council is allowed to send three nominees. Girls must submit an application and other required information to Mary Anne Brutkiewicz at the Mobile Service Center April 1, 2011, in order to be considered. A committee will review applications and selected nominees will be notified by May 1, 2011.

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popes_tms_web.jpgWe're so excited about the 3rd annual Thin Mint Sprint, and things just keep getting even better! 

We've already got:
  • the new patch program (the deadline to register for the patch program is tomorrow, February 18!)
  • you can recycle old tennis shoes, thanks to Baldwin Bone and Joint, P.C.
  • Azalea City DJ's Step Daddy will be there to entertain
  • troops will be leading crafts, selling cookies, and being Thin Mint cheerleaders
  • various health screenings and safety activities led by city personnel
  • The troop with the most race entries will win a troop award
And now, to top it all off, the Museum of Art is having a family friendly Mardi Gras event.  In case you're not familiar with the area, the museum is in Langan Park, where the Thin Mint Sprint is held.  So, after the health expo/awards ceremony is over, you can walk on over to even more (and FREE) fun!

The event will include Mardi Gras inspired art activities, ballroom dancing, music, refreshments, Mardi Gras inspired short plays, and more.

This is really shaping up to be a great day at Langan Park.  Will you be there?

liz_brent.jpgI was out with some Daisy Girl Scouts last weekend who were selling cookies.   They were squealing with delight, surrounded by a group of people eager to purchase cookies, while I spent some time chatting with the leader, discussing where our cookie funds go.  

 

As a reminder, your Girl Scout registration of $12 each year goes directly to GSUSA to fund their operations.   That means that almost all of our council's funds are derived from the cookie program, which accounts for 75% of our council budget.   It covers camp properties, staff salaries, utility bills, insurance and other operational expenses.   Approximately 23% of the council budget is derived from United Way agencies within our council boundaries.  

 

A Girl Scouts of the USA All Abouts cookie wit...

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So, as you are standing outside the Wal-Mart, wondering where the money goes, know that the cookie program funds most of what we do.   And it is making a difference.  For example, as we looked at the data, so far this year, the program team has provided 55% more council-wide programs than last year.   Hopefully, it all feels worthwhile as you watch girls learn to be entrepreneurs, which is what I saw a group of Daisy Girl Scouts do.   Thank you for your hard work.
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by Karlyn Edmonds

GSSA Chief Operating Officer

I happened to be in Auburn yesterday when I received a text message from my brother saying simply "the Toomer's trees have been poisoned and are probably going to die."  Sadness and anger hit me as I looked across College Street at the 130-year-old live oak trees, which are such important symbol for the Tiger family, of which I am a proud member.  I immediately started to ponder what sort of person does such a thing and why on earth would they take out their sports-related aggression on a tree.

As I was driving home last night, I thought about this incident and how I hope it can become a teachable moment for the girls we serve through Girl Scouts.  When Liz Brent, our CEO, and I speak to United Way's and other groups, we always tell people that we are in the business of changing lives; that the girls we serve will grow up to serve their communities well and, indeed, make the world a better place.  Our volunteers make certain Girl Scouts know right from wrong; that they understand the importance of volunteerism and always leaving a place better than they found it. It's the great thing about our program, and it serves girls throughout their lives.

Girl Scouts know that it's better to plant a tree than to destroy one. And I hope they know that, even in Alabama, football's not worth fighting over.  The important things are the way we treat each other and the world around us.  Girl Scouts know this is true, and I hope they will pass along to others.

And, of course, to all the Auburn fans reading this, WAR EAGLE!

Who: All Registered Girl ScoutsAUgymnastics.gif
What: FREE ADMISSION to Auburn vs. Pittsburgh Gymnastics
When: February 25, 7pm
Where: Auburn Arena

Free Admission with this voucher and wearing a Girl Scout t-shirt

First 500 fans will receive a free water bottle
No refunds, no exchange, no cash value, photocopies not accepted, voucher based on seating availability

Please contact Eli Wilkerson with any questions at ewilks@auburn.edu or 334.844.9564

The Outreach Program Facilitator delivers outreach programs in the River Region. Facilitators present academic enhancement programs and the Girl Scout Leadership program in Head Start Centers and local elementary schools in the River Region. S/he works collaboratively with the Outreach Specialist and other outreach staff to fulfill the requirements of funded initiatives including direct program delivery, organizing program-related events, maintenance of records and reports and communication with community partners.  Part-time position.

Click here for more information on this position.

The posting closes March 1, 2011.  If you are interested in applying, send your resume to jobs@girlscoutssa.org.

 

The Outreach Specialist is a part-time position. The Outreach Specialist works with the Advancement Team to develop partnerships and collaborative relationships to extend and support the impact of Girl Scouting within assigned council's jurisdiction.  S/he will assist with development and outreach administrative duties in the Mobile office, including management and supervision of grants and funded initiatives and facilitation of outreach programs.  Position may require periodic weekends and evenings.

Click here for more information on this position.

The posting closes March 1, 2011.  If you are interested in applying, send your resume to jobs@girlscoutssa.org.

 

The Outreach Specialist is a part-time position. The Outreach Specialist works with the Advancement Team to develop partnerships and collaborative relationships to extend and support the impact of Girl Scouting within assigned council's jurisdiction.  S/he will assist with development and outreach administrative duties in the Montgomery office, including management and supervision of grants and funded initiatives and facilitation of outreach programs.  Position may require periodic weekends and evenings.

Click here for more information on this position.

The posting closes March 1, 2011.  If you are interested in applying, send your resume to jobs@girlscoutssa.org.

 

Are your Girl Scouts age 13 to 15?  Are they interested in the environment, ecology, wildlife, biology and natural history?  This Destination is for them!

We have a wonderful opportunity for girls to receive scholarship funding for the Wyoming's Wildlife Wonders destination, July 24-30, 2011. A scholarship of $600 will cover 3/4s of the event fee of $898 for girls ages 13-15. The girls will need to cover travel expenses to get to and from the event. Girls must complete the destinations application available on the destinations website http://www.girlscouts.org/forgirls/travel/destinations/event_details.asp?eventid=322.

Wyoming's Wildlife Wonders is a travel opportunity (destination) where Girl Scouts ages 13-15 travel to Wyoming to study the ecology and natural history of the Greater Yellowstone Ecosystem. Girl Scouts hike, canoe, and trek through the Grand Teton and Yellowstone National Parks. Teens observe wildlife, explore careers that promote sustainable ecosystems, and take action by developing an environmental project to implement back home in their community. Girls across the nation will come together for a week at the Teton Science Schools to learn in an amazing environment about nature, each other and themselves.

Completed application packets are due to Mary Anne Brutkiewicz by February 25.   You can contact her at  800-239-6636 or mbrutkiewicz@girlscoutssa.org



Have you ever looked at the birds in your backyard, maybe even counted them?  Then you are all set to be a citizen-scientist and participate in the Great Backyard Bird Count during F
American Robin -- Humber Bay Park (East) (Toro...

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eb 18-21.  All it takes is to spend 15 minutes tallying the different birds in your yard, neighborhood or other location sometime during the days of the Bird Count.  Then go to www.birdcount.org and enter the highest number of each type of bird you saw.

How does this help science?  When lots of people all over the country participate, we get a look at how bird populations change in number and location.  Scientists use this information to monitor bird health and migrations.

This could be a fun activity for a troop meeting, a family, or just time relaxing by yourself in the backyard.  More information  can be found at www.birdcount.org



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Six Cadettes from Troops 955 and 150  of Girl Scouts of Greater Iowa researched and created a prosthetic hand device to help a little girl in Georgia who was born without fingers on her right hand.  They were able to craft a device that allowed her to hold a pencil and write for the first time in her life!  

 The Global Innovation Award they are competing for is open to Lego League teams around the world.  The goal is that through on-line votes these girls can earn $ to help with patenting this device they created.  Their project needs your support and the support of Girl Scout troops in your Council.  More votes = greater chance to earn $ for the patent process. 
 
You can vote daily from home, work, smart phones.  You can vote once per IP address.  This means, if your workplace has a single server and somebody has already voted, it won't register another vote.  The upside to this is that you could potentially vote several times from your smart phones! Forward it home and vote from there, check out the local coffee shop's wifi etc...  Please take the time to vote daily, share their link with others and encourage them to vote as well.  

http://fllinnovationaward.firstlegoleague.org/teams/flying-monkeys/submission/bob-1-hand-device <http://fllinnovationaward.firstlegoleague.org/teams/flying-monkeys/submission/bob-1-hand-device>

If you are on Facebook, consider becoming a fan.  There is a FLYING MONKEYS LEGO LEAGUE TEAM page to update you on their progress and other things, too.

http://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Flying-Monkeys-Lego-League-Team/151393361582296 <http://www.facebook.com/pages/The-Flying-Monkeys-Lego-League-Team/151393361582296>



The Loucretia Hollingsworth College Scholarship is a one-time scholarship of $1,000 awarded to a graduating senior Girl Scout who will be enrolled full time at an accredited college or university. Applicants must reside in one of these counties: Baldwin, Clarke, Choctaw, Conecuh, Escambia, Mobile, Monroe and Washington. Interested seniors should send application, essay, and three references to the Mobile Service Center by March 1, 2011.

 

The Ellen Autrey Anderson Girl Scout Gold Award Scholarship is a one time $500 scholarship awarded to a graduating senior Girl Scout who will be enrolled full time at an accredited college or university. Applicants must have earned the Gold Award to qualify. Interested seniors should send application, essay, and three references to the Mobile Service Center by March 1, 2011.

2010_Bulletin_Insert.jpgThe first Girl Scout meeting in the United States was on March 12, 1912. To recognize this special event in Girl Scout history, the week including March 12 is known as Girl Scout week. The Saturday and Sunday of this week are known as Girl Scout Sabbath and Girl Scout Sunday. This week is an opportunity for girls to make a special effort to celebrate Girl Scouts.

 

Your troop can recognize scouting by asking your religious organization to place the Girl Scout bulletin insert on Girl Scout Sunday or Sabbath. This year Girl Scout Sunday is March 6 and Girl Scout Sabbath is March 12. The inserts are free, but supplies are limited, so put your order in quickly to ensure you have enough for your organization. 

 

Last year's insert (pictured) was designed by Cadette Girl Scout Abbie R. of Troop 8184.  The back of the insert will have the Girl Scout Promise and Law, and GSSA contact information.

 

Order forms can be e-mailed to programintern@girlscoutssa.org, faxed or mailed to either service center. Please order as many bulletins as there are people in your congregation.  The inserts can be put in service unit boxes for the service unit meetings in March or they can be picked up at the council.

liz_brent.jpgI was online with SNAP the other day, looking at the cookie sale thermometer, and it is looking very pretty.   You and your girls have done lots of work!  Today there were two tractor-trucks and a smaller truck at the Mobile office, unloading cookies.   We budget the cookie sale below that of the year before to be on the safe side.   So keep up the good work!   And make that cookie sale thermometer soar!

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Give new life to old shoes!  Bring your gently-used athletic shoes to the Thin Mint Sprint on February 26.  Just tie the laces together to keep the shoes in pairs and drop them off -- they will land on the feet of someone who really needs them.

As an added bonus, Girl Scouts of South Alabama may receive a cash prize if we are among the top three schools or groups who donate the most shoes.

 The Many More Miles Campaign is a community project hosted by Baldwin Bone & Joint, P.C., and collects shoes for the homeless outreach programs of Wings of Life and Discovery Ministries.

We need a troop to help at the water stop at the Thin Mint Sprint on february 26.

The girls will fill up water cups and hand them to runners on the course, and cheer them on...the runners really appreciate it!

They would need to be at Langan Park at 7 am, and would be done by 9:30 and can enjoy the fun at the Health Expo (arts & crafts, jumpies, etc.).

To volunteer, please contact Mary Anne at extension 1202 or mbrutkiewicz@girlscoutssa.org and include how many girls and adults, as well as their names.

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