School has commenced, and it's a good time to be reminded of things that might have faded during the summer.
It is important to register your girls as Girl Scouts. If you have girls who participate but are not registered, they are not covered by GSSA insurance. You might think, "Well, we aren't doing anything dangerous." However, you would be surprised how many claims we have annually from simple accidents. I was stunned to find some girls not even registered prior to the start of the cookie program. The problem is that, if something happens, this impacts you personally and won't be covered by our insurance, so registering girls who participate is important.
When we have space and the opportunity, we try to include tagalongs and siblings, but GSSA pays additional insurance for those individuals. We cannot allow these children if we don't have tagalong insurance because they are not covered if an accident occurs. Please respect our request when a program or training description indicates no tagalongs. We don't do this to be offensive, but it increases the cost of the event to have them present, and we do it only when it is appropriate. We have already turned someone -away who brought tagalongs to a recent event.
We subscribe to all Safety Activity Checkpoints provided by GSUSA. We have requested that some of those regulations be changed, such as the one which states that those who cannot swim are not allowed to canoe. However, we expect you to comply with those regulations. Each ranger has been provided with a new notebook outlining the various policies and regulations on GSSA properties. It is not their role to enforce those regulations, but they do have a notebook with the documentation that applies to their camp. If you have questions, they have this at their residence. Please check because we have been told about some flagrant violations from last year that we cannot have continue this year. Most of you are excellent about complying with these rules, so this applies to those few who aren't obeying the rules.
We work hard to assure the safety of the girls with whom you work. We vet the adults and work to assure we don't do anything that would put the girls in harm's way. Last year, I attended a couple of events where the parents/troop leaders were present, but not tuned in. The beauty of our program is that girls experience time with adults who can shape them to become contributing citizens. Try to be present with the girls you are chaperoning; it is a gift they will not forget.
Most of the time when I'm around girls and volunteers, I'm always impressed with what
some of you do with the girls in your charge. There is a great deal of interest, caring, nurturing, and learning that happens. It is always beautiful to watch. Thank you for all you do.