Friday, November 7, 2008

School and Girl Scouts and Church and More! (Part 2)

Part 2 of volunteering: Girl Scouts!

I am having so much fun this year as leader of a Girl Scout Junior Troop. We only have three girls in the troop (down from eight last year), but they are the most dedicated, adorable, funny and responsible girls.

They are working towards their Bronze Awards so dedication is necessary at this point. A Bronze Award is a service project on which the girls spend at least 15 hours working -- half is planning; the other half is actively doing. The girls can choose anything they want as a service project (provided it's feasible and I agree with it!) An original idea is challenging to develop, but listen to what these girls are planning:

"Doctor's offices always have toddler toys, board books and half-destroyed picture books, but they never have anything to entertain older kids. We plan to put together baskets for older kids that include things like a Rubix cube, an Etch-a-Sketch, game books, markers and magazines like American Girl and Sports Illustrated for Kids. We are going to donate four boxes each to The Vancouver Clinic and The Free Clinic."

Isn't that a great idea? Most Junior troops seem to perform a service project around pets and humane societies. Noble, to be sure, but overdone and a bit droll in my opinion.

Last Monday was the monthly GS Leaders' Meeting and my Jr's came along with me to announce their Bronze Award project. They did such a fantastic job! All three of them spoke clearly and loudly. A terrific round of applause accompanied them back to their seats. Compliments on their ingenuity flew as they passed out their fliers as did questions on when and where people could donate. I was (and am) so proud!

At any rate... having a small troop is so much more manageable and there isn't nearly as much drama. I talk to the other two girls on the phone a couple times a week and I really feel like I'm making a difference in their lives. And they are most definitely making a difference in mine.

All three of them are so different in personality, but so similar in values. They're a wonderful support for each other and I have the fantastic benefit of seeing how other tweens operate. I sincerely hope all three stay with GS through high school. There are some amazing opportunities out there and some great scholarships available for Girl Scouts who have earned the highest honor -- the Gold Award!

4 states and 7 years of service -- can you tell how strongly I feel about Girl Scouts?

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