Member Essentials – 6/30/20

Greetings GSWNY Members,

The GSWNY Council will be CLOSED this Friday, July 3, 2020, and Monday, July 6, 2020, to observe the Fourth of July Holiday. We will reopen to regular virtual business hours on Tuesday, July 7, 2020, at 9:00 am.

Volunteer & Troop Guidance:
We know many of you are excited to get together in person once again. We are reviewing Phase 4 recommendations from NYS and will have guidelines available for Troop meetings and events in our July 7, 2020 Member’s Essentials. Also, please Save the Date for our information sessions to ask any additional questions you may have:

  • Thursday, July 9, 6:00 pm Service Unit Managers
  • Thursday, July 9, 7:000 pm  Troop Leaders

For questions, please contact Customer Care customercare@gswny.org or call 1-888-837-6410. In an emergency, please call 1-800-882-9268.


It’s the last day of June Renewal! Have you renewed your Girl Scout membership?

Want to get ready for the Best Girl Scout Year Ever?  Our June Renewal campaign is almost over – but there’s still time to renew and get in on some great prize drawings.  In addition to all of our great girl, leader and troop incentives, we also have a few special pop-up prizes –  

Girls who renew by midnight tonight, June 30, will be entered into a drawing to win (1) her choice: either a 1-year Disney Plus+ Membership OR a Kindle Kids Edition

Leaders who renew by midnight tonight, June 30, will be entered into a drawing to win (1) your choice: either a 1-year Amazon Prime Membership or a $100 Amazon gift card.

Troop leaders who are Lifetime Members, don’t forget to renew your troop leader position so you can be in our Co-Leader June Renewal incentive drawings too!

Renew Today

If you or your girls are not in a position to renew right now, don’t worry – our signature Renewal perk, SAGE Tuition Rewards points , can be earned by girls, co-leaders, and service unit managers who renew by September 30. Financial aid is available.


Virtual summer camp starts next week!

Just because we can’t come together in person doesn’t mean camp is cancelled! Our camp, reimagined program is all about offering your girl ways to connect with both her Girl Scout sisters and the great outdoors. 

Our alternative camp program begins Monday, July 6, and both girls in Girl Scouting and non-members are invited to register. The weekly cost is $60, which includes a Camp Activity Kit delivered right to your door, live virtual sessions, online dining hall experiences, self-led activities, virtual campfires, and more! Non-members will also need to enroll in Girl Scouts upon registration for $25. Financial aid is available. 

Use the button below to learn more about camp, reimagined and reserve your girl’s spot today!

Learn more about camp


Feed the Need: GSWNY’s Summer Food Drive 2020

According to nokidhungry.org1 in 4 kids could face hunger this year due to the Coronavirus pandemic. By helping to keep our community food banks, pantries, and cupboards stocked, the Girl Scouts of Western New York can help make a difference in our communities. 

Use the link below to learn more about our Feed the Need program and how you can participate.

READ THE FAQs


Ready to BE AMAZING in 2021?

Our recognition voting is now open! Check out the new theme and vote on our 2021 recognitions that you love best! 

VOTE TODAY


Girl Scouts Run the Your girl is invited to one of our upcoming Virtual Meet-Ups!

Our Meet-Ups are free four-week long interactive programs offering all girls a taste of the Girl Scout experience. Girls will meet new friends, tap into their creativity, and discover how to take the lead in her own life and the world. Both current and non-Girl Scouts are invited.

The meet-ups are held weekly, with preK girls entering kindergarten in the fall meeting Fridays, Daisies meeting Tuesdays, and Brownies meeting Thursdays. Use the links below to invite your friends and sign up your girls for upcoming meet-ups, and be on the lookout for additional dates coming soon!

Prek Meet-Ups

Daisy Meet-Ups

Brownie Meet-Ups


Girl Scouting at Home

Looking for ways to stay involved with Girl Scouts? Check out our Girl Scouting at Home page today! New resources are added regularly. 

Looking for more options? Head to girlscouts.org for even more at-home opportunities for your Girl Scout, and check out some of the online opportunities below:

Global Gender Equality Series
Tuesday, June 30 | 4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.

Activities, inspired by our Girl Scout STEM Have you ever found yourself wondering how you can make the world a better place? Do you want to raise awareness and learn how to advocate for gender equality? This series is a wonderful place to start. Fourteen Girl Scouts from across the country devised a six-part virtual series covering the most pressing issues facing girls today.

Topics include Girls’ Access to Education, Girls in Leadership, Girls in STEM, and Gender-Based Violence. You’ll learn about what’s happening around the world and how we can make a difference here in the United States. Girls will also earn the 2020 Global Action Award that will be mailed to participants at the end of the program.

This series has a $25 registration fee and will be held weekly on Tuesday evenings from 4:00–6:00 p.m. EDT 6/30/2020 through 8/4/2020. Upon registration, you will receive a confirmation email with details about the activities and what you’ll earn

REGISTER FOR GENDER EQUALITY SERIES


Tips for Troop Leaders LIVE: Bringing the Great Outdoors Home
Wednesday, July 1 | 8:00 p.m. to 8:45 p.m.

Join Girl Scouts Heart of the South Outdoor activities offer so much more than fun in the sun; they’re about building tangible outdoor skills, forging deep friendships, and growing girls’ confidence. In this webcast, we’ll discuss how you can build your comfort with the outdoors—yes, even from home—and inspire your girls to do the same this summer.

REGISTER FOR BRINGING OUTDOORS HOME

GSUSA and the National Civil Rights Museum Sessions

Join us on Saturday, June 27, from 5:00 to 6:30 p.m. ET, for an exclusive GSUSA is partnering with National Civil Rights Museum to bring you a virtual event on July 2—the anniversary of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Come listen, learn, and ask questions! RSVP now:

Thursday, July 2 | 1:00 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. | Register
Girl Scouts as Young Activists: Storytime and Crafting with the National Civil Rights Museum, for grades K–5

Thursday, July 2 | 2:00 p.m. to 2:50 p.m. | Register
Women and Girls in the Civil Rights Movement, Then and Now, for grades 6–12


Girl Scouts Doing Good Things – Gold Award Edition

We’re highlighting the more than 30 Girl Scouts who earned their Gold Award this past year! Below are this week’s featured Girl Scouts, but you can read about all the Gold Award Girl Scouts at gswnyblog.com


We are #GirlScoutStrong! Looking forward to talking to you next Tuesday! In the meantime, don’t hesitate to reach out to us at Customer Care customercare@gswny.org or call 1-888-837-6410. In an emergency, please call 1-800-882-9268.

Member Essentials – 6/23/20

Dear GSWNY Members,

We promised to keep you updated regarding the important news we shared related to the initial May 30, 2020 Update and  June 2, 2020 Update. On Friday, June 19, we released an update regarding new, related information. You can read the  press release on our blog.

At Girl Scouts of Western New York, the safety and well-being of our girls and all children is our highest priority.

If you have questions, please call our Customer Care line at 1-888-837-6410, or email Morgan Williams-Bryant, Chief Impact Officer. Please also feel free to  email me as well. We ask that you direct any media inquiries to Callie Johnson, EVP of Marketing at 716-935-6023 or via email .

Upcoming Council Holiday Closure
The GSWNY Council will be CLOSED Friday, July 3, 2020 and Monday, July 6, 2020 to observe the 4th of July Holiday. We will reopen to regular virtual business hours on Tuesday, July 7, 2020 at 9:00 am.

Thank you.

Yours in Girl Scouting,
Alison Wilcox
CEO, Girl Scouts of Western New York


Renew your Girl Scout membership today to qualify for great prizes and SAGE Tuition Rewards Points!

Here’s to all the dads raising

We’re down to our last week of June Renewal, which means you have seven days to qualify for some amazing prizes! 

All girls who renew before midnight on June 30 will receive a GSUSA renewal patch, and be entered to win one of the 20 Best Year Ever Packs, featuring a $20 GSWNY card and a Girl Scout t-shirt.

All co-leaders who renew before midnight on June 30 will be entered into a drawing for one of 5 Best Year Ever Packs for leaders, featuring a $20 GSWNY card and Girl Scout t-shirt.

All troops who have all their girls renewed and two co-leaders before midnight on June 30 will be entered in to win one of two Best Year Ever Packs for troops, featuring a $100 GSWNY card, $100 GSWNY property credit, and a free program-on-a-box rental.

Renew Today

If you or your girls are not in a position to renew right now, don’t worry – our signature Renewal perk, SAGE Tuition Rewards points , can be earned by girls, co-leaders, and service unit managers who renew by September 30. Financial aid is available.


Registration is now open for GSWNY’s camp, reimagined!

Just because we can’t come together in-person, doesn’t mean that summer is cancelled! We’re offering a variety of ways to stay connected and get outdoors. It’s camp, reimagined with The Summer We Camped At Home!

Your Girl Scout (and her non-Girl Scout friends!) are invited to be a part of a unique camp experience in your own home and backyard. Starting July 6, we will have a weekly theme and home-delivered Camp Activity kits, meaning camp is coming right to your front door. 

The weekly cost is $60 for registered Girl Scouts, and includes her Camp Activity Kit with age-appropriate activities to do in three virtual sessions throughout the week as well as on her own, a virtual dining hall experience, virtual campfires, and more! Financial aid is available. 

Spots are filling fast, so head to gswny.org to learn more and register today!

Learn more about camp


Last week, GSUSA shared its support for the Black Lives Matter movement and its commitment to proactively building an anti-racist organization. They officially launched the Girl Scouts’ anti-racism pledge, elevating diversity, equity, inclusion, and racial justice as organizational priorities and outlining the associated actions they are currently taking with regard to their leadership, staff hiring practices and training, and support for our girls and volunteers.

We encourage all Girl Scouts—girls, families, volunteers, alums, and staff—along with all of our supporters, to sign the pledge and commit to taking action to make the world a just and equitable place. We also encourage you to spread the word among your members, colleagues, friends, and wider networks.


One Week Left to Submit Your Annual Troop Financial Activity Report
Deadline is Midnight Tuesday, June 30

If you have already submitted your T-FAR we wish to thank you!!!  If you haven’t, the deadline is approaching.  Are you having connection issues? The best platform to use to get to www.gswny.org is through Chrome.  You will need to attach a copy of your May troop bank statement.

A reminder: As of July 1, GSUSA removes access to the Volunteer Tool Kit for any volunteers who have not re-registered for the 2020-2021 Membership Year. The T-FAR lives in the Finance Tab on the Volunteer Tool Kit.

If you have any questions – please reach out to Customercare@gswny.org or 1-888-837-6410


Ready to BE AMAZING in 2021?

Our recognition voting is now open! Check out the new theme and vote on our 2021 recognitions that you love best! 

VOTE TODAY


Girl Scouts Run the Your girl is invited to one of our upcoming Virtual Meet-Ups!

Our Meet-ups are free month-long interactive programs offering all girls a taste of the Girl Scout experience. Girls will meet new friends, tap into their creativity, and discover how to take the lead in her own life and the world. Both current and non-Girl Scouts are invited.

The meet-ups are held weekly, with preK girls entering kindergarten in the fall meeting Fridays, Daisies meeting Tuesdays, and Brownies meeting Thursdays. Use the links below to invite your friends and sign up your girls for upcoming meet-ups, and be on the lookout for additional dates!

Prek Meet-Ups

Daisy Meet-Ups

Brownie Meet-Ups


Upcoming National Webinars

LIVE! Awesome Girls: Returning to the Outdoors Responsibly
Wednesday, June 24 | Two Sessions

Activities, inspired by our Girl Scout STEM curriculum and rooted in the Girl Scout Leadership Experience, cover a range of STEM topics and

Connect with The North Face’s top high adventure athletes to learn how they have stayed mentally and physically strong during Stay at Home. As they begin to head back outdoors, learn tips and tricks from these leaders on how to do so responsibly. Adventurous Girl Scouts will facilitate a conversation with The North Face’s high adventure athletes.

This program features two sessions, one for girls in grades K-5 and one for girls in grades 6-12. Use the links below to register. These are open to any girl, so invite your friends!

Girls in Grades K-5 | 4:00 p.m. to 4:30 p.m

Girls in Grades 6-12 | 5:00 p.m. to 5:45 p.m.

Live and Learn featuring Rubye Del Harden
Thursday, June 25 | 5:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.

Join Girl Scouts Heart of the South  for a remarkable series highlighting women and their journeys in leadership. Hear stories of their education and career, barriers they overcame, things that built their confidence and advice they have for the next generation of female leaders. Each session will conclude with a Q & A. Click here to learn more about Rubye Del Harden.

REGISTER FOR LIVE AND LEARN

Girl Scouts Run the World Party – Instagram Live Event
Saturday, June 27 | 5:00 p.m. to 6:30 p.m.

Join us on Saturday, June 27, from 5:00 to 6:30 p.m. ET, for an exclusive virtual Girl Scout party filled with music by DJs Amira and Kayla, product giveaways from Girl Scouts and Justice , and special performances by Jam Jr. artists. Invite your Girl Scout sisters and friends to join in on the fun to make it extra special—you’re sure to remember this party for years to come! Follow @girlscouts on Instagram and join us LIVE on June 27.


Girl Scouting at Home

Looking for ways to stay involved with Girl Scouts? Check out our Girl Scouting at Home page today! We regularly add new resources.


Girl Scouts Doing Good Things – Gold Award Edition

We’re highlighting the more than 30 Girl Scouts who earned their Gold Award this past year! Below are this week’s featured Girl Scouts, but you can read about all the Gold Award Girl Scouts at gswnyblog.com


We are #GirlScoutStrong! Looking forward to talking to you next Tuesday! In the meantime, don’t hesitate to reach out to us at Customer Care customercare@gswny.org or call 1-888-837-6410. In an emergency, please call 1-800-882-9268.

Girl Scouts of WNY announces all 2020 Gold Award Girl Scouts

Girl Scouts of Western New York is proud to announce all WNY Gold Award Girl Scouts. All 2020 Gold Award Girl Scouts will receive the option to be a part of the 2021 in-person Gold Award ceremony next year to receive their Gold Award pin. The Girl Scout Gold Award is the most prestigious award in the world for girls.

Click on the girls’ names below to be directed to the press release for their specific Girl Scout Gold Award project.

ERIE COUNTY

Name Hometown Project Title
Danielle Bellis Akron First Kicks: A Teen-Led Preschool Soccer Program
Jessica Breth Orchard Park Totes for Turtles
Ava Giangrasso Clarence Music and Memories
Angelina Gonzalez Buffalo Trees of Hope
Aniyiah Harris Buffalo Let’s Get School Supplies!
Bridget Hersee North Tonawanda Fort Niagara Naturalization Ceremony
Amber Hornquist Glenwood Lothlorien Feed Bins and Organizing
Nora Klipfel North Tonawanda Happy Caps
Caroline Kowalski Orchard Park Therapy and Rehabilitation Garden
Corrine Lapp Amherst Miracle Masks
Morgan Mahoney Hamburg Game Time!
Madison Rettig Hamburg The Importance of Healthy Nutrition and Exercise for Female Youth
Alexa Sass Hamburg Pollinator Garden
Nicole Spiegel East Amherst Daycare Project
Sarah Stuhr Orchard Park Spiritual Murals
Arielle Tyrpak Orchard Park Saving the Unborn
Alexandra Wilczek Kenmore Backpacks for Foster Kids
Renee Wright Holland Reading Garden

LIVINGSTON COUNTY

Name Hometown Project Title
Justine Cole Livonia American Flag Education

MONROE COUNTY

Name Hometown Project Title
Rachel Bernstein Honeoye Falls Benches and Sign for Community Garden
Sophia Braithwaite Webster Titan Ambassador Program
Rachel Burt Webster Promoting Water Safety
Mikaela Campbell Honeoye Falls Soccer Field Seating
Audrey DeVault Penfield Bats and Butterflies
Mallory Edgell Fairport Inspiring Through Art: Perinton Pedestrian Bridge Mural
Ellie Fairchild Honeoye Falls STEM in the Library
Zaria Gibson-Stevenson Rochester Inspire You
Lauren Gulick Fairport Art Day at Gilda’s Club
Audrey Huff Fairport Girls on the Run 10-Hour Relay
Emma Nelk Pittsford Grief is Different for Everyone: A Teen’s Point of View
Elizabeth Newell Webster Educating People on Owning Exotic Birds
Carmen Ponce Pittsford Improving the Display of Fallen Law Enforcement Officers’ Pictures & Information
Avery Roberts West Henrietta Park Benches at Martin Road Soccer Park
Emma Smith Pittsford Mural for the Children at the Monroe County Visitation Center
Bridget Taylor Rochester Mercy Morsels: A Cookbook to Benefit Bethany House
Isabell Timm West Henrietta Breese Park Birdhouses

Important GSWNY Update 6-19-2020

Dear GSWNY Members,

We promised to keep you updated regarding the important news we shared related to the initial May 30, 2020 Update and June 2, 2020 Update. We want to share with you first, the statement that will be shared with the public this afternoon on June 19, 2020 regarding new related information. Please see the press release below.

At Girl Scouts of Western New York, the safety and wellbeing of our girls and all children is our highest priority.

If you have questions, please call our Customer Care line at: 1-888-837-6410, or email Morgan Williams-Bryant, Chief Impact Officer at email. Please also feel free to email me as well. We ask that you direct any media inquiries to Callie Johnson, EVP of Marketing at 716-935-6023 or email.

Thank you.

Yours in Girl Scouting,
Alison Wilcox
CEO, Girl Scouts of Western New York


Press Release:

Girl Scouts of Western New York Statement on Walton Case
First time that allegations of this nature involve a GSWNY troop co-leader


DEPEW, NY (June 19, 2020) – The Girl Scouts of Western New York today issued the following information and statement, attributable to GSWNY CEO Alison Wilcox. It follows reports that the Erie County District Attorney’s office added to charges lodged May 29 by North Tonawanda police against a troop co-leader for sexually abusing two children. This will be the GSWNY’s only comment at this time.

“All of us at the Girl Scouts of Western New York want to express our concern for the two children and we want them to have the best-possible care and support. There is nothing more important to Girl Scouts than the safety and well-being of all children, and we take all such allegations very seriously. This is hugely distressing to us.”

“Since the first arrests, we learned from North Tonawanda police that the reported abuse did not take place at a Girl Scout facility, or during Girl Scout activities.”

“Nonetheless, we continue to emphasize the rules and regulations involving adult-Girl Scout interactions, safety and well-being. The male troop co-leader passed thorough background checks in 2016 and again in October 2019. Both adults were immediately removed from all GSWNY activities May 29. We are conducting a rigorous internal investigation, reviewing our regulations, and continue to cooperate with law enforcement.”
 
By way of relevant background, please know this is the first time that a GSWNY volunteer has been involved in allegations such as these.

Also, our rules state that there are always at least two approved, unrelated, adult volunteers, at least one of whom is a female, with any girl or group of girls following prescribed adult-to-girl ratios. These include co-leaders, chaperones, and troop drivers, all of whom must pass a background check every three years. The father/troop co-leader in this case passed background checks in October 2016, and again in October 2019.
 
GSWNY has about 15,000 Girl Scouts, and more than 6,000 adult volunteers across its nine counties of operation. There have been no in-person Girl Scout meetings or sanctioned activities since March 15, due to COVID-19. 

For further background view: Volunteer ResourcesVolunteer Essentials, and Safety Activity Checkpoints.

About Girl Scouts of Western New York
Girl Scouts of Western New York (GSWNY) serves nearly 15,000 girls and over 6,000 adult volunteers across the GSWNY jurisdiction, including Cattaraugus, Chautauqua, Erie, Genesee, Livingston, Monroe, Niagara, Orleans and Wyoming counties. The council’s administrative service centers are located in Batavia, Buffalo, Jamestown, Lockport, Niagara Falls, and Rochester. Girl Scouting builds girls of courage, confidence, and character who make the world a better place. Through the Girl Scout Leadership Experience, girls discover their personal best and prepare for a positive future, connect with others in an increasingly diverse world and take action to solve problems and improve their communities.

Girl Scouts of WNY announces Sarah Stuhr as a 2020 Gold Award Girl Scout

Girl Scouts of Western New York is proud to announce Sarah Stuhr of Orchard Park, NY, as a 2020 Gold Award Girl Scout. Stuhr’s project, Spiritual Murals, involved creating murals at St. James UCC in the town of Hamburg.  

Stuhr said “I chose my project because I wanted to communicate happiness in the church’s community, in hope that anyone who looked at my murals would leave feeling better than before. The project impacted my community by giving my audience a newly gained positive attitude.”

Stuhr purchased the materials needed, got her designs approved by the Church Board, and got to work. After she finished sketching, she painted the walls to create the final image she pictured in her head and sketches. Stuhr’s artwork pieces will now be a staple in the St. James UCC facility.

Stuhr said, “Girl Scouting has allowed me to give back to the community, make new friends, and to grow in confidence and character. I have learned so many life skills just by being around the people in my troop and through the organizations in which we worked with. Girl Scouts has helped me to become a better version of who I am today.”

By earning her Gold Award during the 2020 Girl Scouting year, Stuhr will be included in a virtual acknowledgment this June. All 2020 Gold Award Girl Scouts will receive the option to be a part of the 2021 in-person Gold Award ceremony next year to receive their Gold Award pin. The Girl Scout Gold Award is the most prestigious award in the world for girls. 

The Gold Award project is the culmination of all the work a girl puts into “going for the Gold.” A Girl Scout’s project should be something that a girl can be passionate about—in thought, deed, and action that encompasses organizational, leadership, and networking skills. The project should also fulfill a need within a girl’s community (whether local or global) and create change that has the potential to be on-going or sustainable. Approximately 80 hours of community service are involved in the project. Completion of the Gold Award also qualifies the Girl Scout for special scholarship opportunities and she can enlist in the military at a higher starting pay grade.

The Girl Scout Gold Award, the most prestigious award in the world for girls, acknowledges the power behind each recipient’s dedication to not only empowering and bettering herself, but also to making the world a better place for others. These young women are courageous leaders and visionary change makers.

The Gold Award requires a Girl Scout to identify an issue and investigate it to understand what can be done to address the problem. The girl then forms a team to act as a support system, including a project advisor close to the issue who is not a troop leader or family member, while she leads the project. The Girl Scout creates a plan to ensure they know what steps they must tackle while working on the project. The Girl Scout submits a proposal for her project to her local Girl Scout council. After acceptance, the girl begins to work through the steps of their plan utilizing the assistance of her support team where necessary. Lastly, the project is used to educate and inspire others about the cause they are addressing.

To learn more, visit gswny.org.

Girl Scouts of WNY announces Renee Wright as a 2020 Gold Award Girl Scout

Girl Scouts of Western New York is proud to announce Renee Wright of Holland, NY, as a 2020 Gold Award Girl Scout. Wright’s project, Reading Garden, involved building a custom reading nook for the Toddler Room of Orchard Park Wesleyan church in Orchard Park.

Wright’s project combined her passions for her church community, reading, and working with children and gave the children at her church a safe and productive space to read and play in. This process involved designing and creating a custom cubby unit, safety gate, and bookshelves that were themed to match the rest of the space.

Wright explained, “Every week I see the children work and enjoying the Toddler Room and using my Reading Garden during their story time. I learned how to use power tools to complete this project as well as created several new relationships within my church. I built, painted, and assembled all these pieces myself, as well as coordinated all the project donations, communications, and volunteer meetings. After the project was completed, I hosted several question and answer sessions for parents and other church members, as well as wrote an article that was included in the church’s electronic newsletter.”

“I am happy to promote early literacy within a community that is so important to me and appreciate the support from everyone who helped me during this process,” stated Wright.

Wright is the first in her community to earn her Gold Award in the last decade. As a Girl Scout Ambassador, she often aids younger troops, and hopes that the completion of her project will inspire the girls she works with to continue to serve their community as well.

By earning her Gold Award during the 2020 Girl Scouting year, Wright will be included in a virtual acknowledgment this June. All 2020 Gold Award Girl Scouts will receive the option to be a part of the 2021 in-person Gold Award ceremony next year to receive their Gold Award pin. The Girl Scout Gold Award is the most prestigious award in the world for girls. 

The Gold Award project is the culmination of all the work a girl puts into “going for the Gold.” A Girl Scout’s project should be something that a girl can be passionate about—in thought, deed, and action that encompasses organizational, leadership, and networking skills. The project should also fulfill a need within a girl’s community (whether local or global) and create change that has the potential to be on-going or sustainable. Approximately 80 hours of community service are involved in the project. Completion of the Gold Award also qualifies the Girl Scout for special scholarship opportunities and she can enlist in the military at a higher starting pay grade.

The Girl Scout Gold Award, the most prestigious award in the world for girls, acknowledges the power behind each recipient’s dedication to not only empowering and bettering herself, but also to making the world a better place for others. These young women are courageous leaders and visionary change makers.

The Gold Award requires a Girl Scout to identify an issue and investigate it to understand what can be done to address the problem. The girl then forms a team to act as a support system, including a project advisor close to the issue who is not a troop leader or family member, while she leads the project. The Girl Scout creates a plan to ensure they know what steps they must tackle while working on the project. The Girl Scout submits a proposal for her project to her local Girl Scout council. After acceptance, the girl begins to work through the steps of their plan utilizing the assistance of her support team where necessary. Lastly, the project is used to educate and inspire others about the cause they are addressing.

To learn more, visit gswny.org.

Girl Scouts of WNY announces Madison Rettig as a 2020 Gold Award Girl Scout

Girl Scouts of Western New York is proud to announce Madison Rettig of Hamburg, NY, as a 2020 Gold Award Girl Scout. Rettig’s project is called The Importance of Healthy Nutrition and Exercise for Female Youth. Madison Rettig created a curriculum, website, and worksheets to help younger Girl Scouts learn to lead healthy lifestyles.

Rettig teamed up with younger Girl Scouts to present them with research she had done on exercise and nutrition. She also prepared worksheets to help them earn a badge. Rettig didn’t stop there and created a website called “HelloFit” using Wix.com for girls to use as a trustworthy resource for information on a healthy diet and exercise, because she personally knows how challenging it can be to find good information on the subject.

While in Girl Scouts, Rettig said, “I’ve learned how important it is to have a group of friends that I can rely on and how rewarding hard work can be.” By earning her Gold Award during the 2020 Girl Scouting year, Rettig will be included in a virtual acknowledgment this June. All 2020 Gold Award Girl Scouts will receive the option to be a part of the 2021 in-person Gold Award ceremony next year to receive their Gold Award pin. The Girl Scout Gold Award is the most prestigious award in the world for girls.

The Gold Award project is the culmination of all the work a girl puts into “going for the Gold.” A Girl Scout’s project should be something that a girl can be passionate about—in thought, deed, and action that encompasses organizational, leadership, and networking skills. The project should also fulfill a need within a girl’s community (whether local or global) and create change that has the potential to be on-going or sustainable. Approximately 80 hours of community service are involved in the project. Completion of the Gold Award also qualifies the Girl Scout for special scholarship opportunities and she can enlist in the military at a higher starting pay grade.

The Girl Scout Gold Award, the most prestigious award in the world for girls, acknowledges the power behind each recipient’s dedication to not only empowering and bettering herself, but also to making the world a better place for others. These young women are courageous leaders and visionary change makers.

The Gold Award requires a Girl Scout to identify an issue and investigate it to understand what can be done to address the problem. The girl then forms a team to act as a support system, including a project advisor close to the issue who is not a troop leader or family member, while she leads the project. The Girl Scout creates a plan to ensure they know what steps they must tackle while working on the project. The Girl Scout submits a proposal for her project to her local Girl Scout council. After acceptance, the girl begins to work through the steps of their plan utilizing the assistance of her support team where necessary. Lastly, the project is used to educate and inspire others about the cause they are addressing.

To learn more, visit gswny.org.

Girl Scouts of WNY announces Elizabeth Fairchild as a 2020 Gold Award Girl Scout

Girl Scouts of Western New York is proud to announce Elizabeth Fairchild of Honeoye Falls, NY, as a 2020 Gold Award Girl Scout. Fairchild’s project, STEM at the Library, involved hosting a day of STEM activities at the Mendon Library and providing the library with STEM activities for the future.

Fairchild’s goal was to address the need for women in STEM fields and keep girls interested in STEM throughout their years in middle school. Fairchild stated, “They learned about different STEM topics, the problem with the shortage of women in STEM fields, and were inspired to continue STEM education and encourage other girls to be interested in STEM.”

Fairchild created a website that has all of her program plans on it along with other resources to help girls learn more about STEM. She also sent her program plans to other area libraries so they can use the activities. She will train someone to continue running STEM programs at the Mendon Library after she graduates.

Fairchild said, “I have learned so many life skills in Girl Scouts and I have bonded with many people. My Silver and Gold Awards helped me develop my leadership skills.”

By earning her Gold Award during the 2020 Girl Scouting year, Fairchild will be included in a virtual acknowledgment this June. All 2020 Gold Award Girl Scouts will receive the option to be a part of the 2021 in-person Gold Award ceremony next year to receive their Gold Award pin. The Girl Scout Gold Award is the most prestigious award in the world for girls. 

The Gold Award project is the culmination of all the work a girl puts into “going for the Gold.” A Girl Scout’s project should be something that a girl can be passionate about—in thought, deed, and action that encompasses organizational, leadership, and networking skills. The project should also fulfill a need within a girl’s community (whether local or global) and create change that has the potential to be on-going or sustainable. Approximately 80 hours of community service are involved in the project. Completion of the Gold Award also qualifies the Girl Scout for special scholarship opportunities and she can enlist in the military at a higher starting pay grade.

The Girl Scout Gold Award, the most prestigious award in the world for girls, acknowledges the power behind each recipient’s dedication to not only empowering and bettering herself, but also to making the world a better place for others. These young women are courageous leaders and visionary change makers.

The Gold Award requires a Girl Scout to identify an issue and investigate it to understand what can be done to address the problem. The girl then forms a team to act as a support system, including a project advisor close to the issue who is not a troop leader or family member, while she leads the project. The Girl Scout creates a plan to ensure they know what steps they must tackle while working on the project. The Girl Scout submits a proposal for her project to her local Girl Scout council. After acceptance, the girl begins to work through the steps of their plan utilizing the assistance of her support team where necessary. Lastly, the project is used to educate and inspire others about the cause they are addressing.

To learn more, visit gswny.org.

Girl Scouts of WNY announces Bridget Taylor as a 2020 Gold Award Girl Scout

Girl Scouts of Western New York is proud to announce Bridget Taylor of Rochester, NY, as a 2020 Gold Award Girl Scout. Taylor’s project is called, Mercy Morsels: A Cookbook to Benefit Bethany House. Bethany House is a shelter for women and children in the Rochester area that relies entirely on donated goods.

Taylor reached out to people within her high school, Our Lady of Mercy’s network to get started. She contacted current Mercy families, staff, and alumni who sent her recipes for the cookbook. After selling the cookbook, Taylor used the profits to purchase items off Bethany House’s wish list, to donate to them.

Bethany House impacts more than 2,000 individuals and families a year. “My project benefits people served by Bethany House by providing things they otherwise would not have. They are in constant need of baby products, feminine hygiene products, toiletries, cleaning supplies, paper products, and food,” said Taylor.

Taylor explained, “My Gold Award was such an amazing opportunity; to be able to provide so much hope and happiness to the women and children at Bethany House was such a humbling experience and a wonderful feeling. Girl Scouts has allowed me to feel more connected to my community and those living in it.”

By earning her Gold Award during the 2020 Girl Scouting year, Taylor will be included in a virtual acknowledgment this June. All 2020 Gold Award Girl Scouts will receive the option to be a part of the 2021 in-person Gold Award ceremony next year to receive their Gold Award pin. The Girl Scout Gold Award is the most prestigious award in the world for girls. 

The Gold Award project is the culmination of all the work a girl puts into “going for the Gold.” A Girl Scout’s project should be something that a girl can be passionate about—in thought, deed, and action that encompasses organizational, leadership, and networking skills. The project should also fulfill a need within a girl’s community (whether local or global) and create change that has the potential to be on-going or sustainable. Approximately 80 hours of community service are involved in the project. Completion of the Gold Award also qualifies the Girl Scout for special scholarship opportunities and she can enlist in the military at a higher starting pay grade.

The Girl Scout Gold Award, the most prestigious award in the world for girls, acknowledges the power behind each recipient’s dedication to not only empowering and bettering herself, but also to making the world a better place for others. These young women are courageous leaders and visionary change makers.

The Gold Award requires a Girl Scout to identify an issue and investigate it to understand what can be done to address the problem. The girl then forms a team to act as a support system, including a project advisor close to the issue who is not a troop leader or family member, while she leads the project. The Girl Scout creates a plan to ensure they know what steps they must tackle while working on the project. The Girl Scout submits a proposal for her project to her local Girl Scout council. After acceptance, the girl begins to work through the steps of their plan utilizing the assistance of her support team where necessary. Lastly, the project is used to educate and inspire others about the cause they are addressing.

To learn more, visit gswny.org.

Girl Scouts of WNY announces Bridget Hersee as a 2020 Gold Award Girl Scout

Girl Scouts of Western New York is proud to announce Bridget Hersee of North Tonawanda, NY, as a 2020 Gold Award Girl Scout. Hersee’s project, Fort Niagara Naturalization Ceremony, involved coordinating a Naturalization Ceremony at Old Fort Niagara with the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services and the Old Fort Niagara Staff.

Hersee has been a volunteer at Old Fort Niagara for many years. She learned that there hadn’t been a naturalization ceremony on site for over 30 years, and decided to change that. Hersee explained, “My project gave the community of citizenship applicants the opportunity to naturalize at a beautiful, local, and historically significant venue and learn some of its vast history while there.”

Hersee spent several days shadowing United States Citizenship and Immigration Services staff and learned about the entire citizenship process. She learned naturalization law, the process which immigrants complete to become citizens and how the agency plans a ceremony.

Hersee coordinated the agenda and those required in attendance to conduct a naturalization ceremony, including a Federal Judge, a legal clerk, and the Immigration Services Officers.

“My project addressed the issue that new immigrants often do not know the local history of the areas in which they live. There are now 20 new citizens who can say they were naturalized at Old Fort Niagara in the first naturalization ceremony held there since the 1990s,” said Hersee.

Hersee’s devotion to this project means that the Old Fort Niagara staff is now aware of what is needed to host a Naturalization Ceremony, and there can be more ceremonies in the future. Hersee explained that “Girl Scouts gave me an incredible opportunity to learn new things, meet people and go through a process I never would have had the chance to do without Girl Scouts.”

By earning her Gold Award during the 2020 Girl Scouting year, Hersee will be included in a virtual acknowledgment this June. All 2020 Gold Award Girl Scouts will receive the option to be a part of the 2021 in-person Gold Award ceremony next year to receive their Gold Award pin. The Girl Scout Gold Award is the most prestigious award in the world for girls. 

The Gold Award project is the culmination of all the work a girl puts into “going for the Gold.” A Girl Scout’s project should be something that a girl can be passionate about—in thought, deed, and action that encompasses organizational, leadership, and networking skills. The project should also fulfill a need within a girl’s community (whether local or global) and create change that has the potential to be on-going or sustainable. Approximately 80 hours of community service are involved in the project. Completion of the Gold Award also qualifies the Girl Scout for special scholarship opportunities and she can enlist in the military at a higher starting pay grade.

The Girl Scout Gold Award, the most prestigious award in the world for girls, acknowledges the power behind each recipient’s dedication to not only empowering and bettering herself, but also to making the world a better place for others. These young women are courageous leaders and visionary change makers.

The Gold Award requires a Girl Scout to identify an issue and investigate it to understand what can be done to address the problem. The girl then forms a team to act as a support system, including a project advisor close to the issue who is not a troop leader or family member, while she leads the project. The Girl Scout creates a plan to ensure they know what steps they must tackle while working on the project. The Girl Scout submits a proposal for her project to her local Girl Scout council. After acceptance, the girl begins to work through the steps of their plan utilizing the assistance of her support team where necessary. Lastly, the project is used to educate and inspire others about the cause they are addressing.

To learn more, visit gswny.org.