Welcome to GSCO Blog

 

Girl Scouts can do anything and everything they set their hearts and minds to! You’ll find it all here.  From members sharing their adventures to Highest Award honorees describing their projects and news from council, cookie updates, travel opportunities, volunteer tips and much, much more.

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Girl Scout Night with the Colorado Switchbacks Soccer

Join us for Girl Scout Night with the Colorado Switchbacks Soccer on August 4, 2018! Cheer on the Switchbacks as they take on the Oklahoma City Energy. All Girl Scouts attending will receive a special event patch. Enjoy discounted tickets and get ready for a fun night! All Girl Scouts, friends, and family are invited!

The game will start at 5 p.m. and will be hosted at Weidner Field in Colorado Springs. Cost is $12 a person and tickets can be purchased at https://goo.gl/Z6Sc3e. The ticket deadline is Monday, July 30.

Questions? Please contact Lori Thompson at lori.thompson@gscolorado.org. We hope to see you there!

GE Johnson’s Careers in Construction Day for Cadettes and Seniors

Girl Scout Cadettes and Seniors are invited to Careers in Construction Day hosted by GE Johnson on Saturday, September 29, 2018 in Colorado Springs. Construction Day covers a broad range of construction careers from building to project management to sustainability and more! Come learn from GE Johnson’s experts. Try your hand at building and make a little free library you can place in your neighborhood. Cadettes can earn requirements towards the “Woodworking” badge. The GE Johnson team will also host a behind-the-scenes construction tour of the U.S. Olympic Museum.

Cost is $10/ Girl Scout and is limited to the first 50 Cadettes and Seniors who sign up. Registration can be found at https://goo.gl/9Y4evs and the registration deadline is September 14. The event will begin at 10 a.m. and end at 3:30 p.m. Girls will want to bring a sack lunch and refillable water bottle and wear closed toe shoes (no sandals or flip flops, please). The event will be hosted at GE Johnson’s Logistics Facility in Colorado Springs and the U.S. Olympic Museum construction site. Participants will need transportation from GE Johnson’s Logistics Facility to the US Olympic Museum.

Questions? Please email Lori Thompson at lori.thompson@gscolorado.org.

Girl Scout Juniors create NICU Care Kits

All 14 Girl Scout Juniors of Troop 1631 from Highlands Ranch recently completed their biggest girl-led project yet! Many of the girls were in the NICU (neonatal intensive care unit) as babies, or have overcome some sort of medical challenge, so when completing the “Agent of Change” Journey, they wanted to do something to help children and families in the NICU at UCHealth. During the Journey, the girls talked about ways that they could make a difference individually, but with the help of their community, they could make an even bigger impact.

The project started with the intent of helping babies, and the girls invited a labor and delivery nurse to a meeting to talk with them about what happens when a baby is in NICU and what parents might experience.  Afterwards, the girls decided they wanted to make NICU Care Kits with the hopes of providing comfort to the parents, so they could focus on caring for their babies, and this nurse served as a consultant through the process.  The girls broke into three committees. One group was in charge of researching hospitals, and working with staff to coordinate logistics.  Another group researched items a parent might need and made suggestions on what should be included in the kits.  The third brainstormed ways to fund this project and obtain the items.

Once they narrowed down logistics, they delegated items for each girl to be responsible and were challenged to go out to the community and let others know what they were doing and ask for donations. Many businesses respectfully declined, but the girls were persistent and 85% of the items in the kits were donated.  This included pillows, toothbrush/toothpaste/dental floss, shampoo/conditioner, preemie clothes, snack bars, note pads (so parents could journal the experience), and a few other comfort items.  The girls even found someone to knit and donate preemie hats.  They also chose to use a portion of their cookie money to purchase items they felt they were missing from the kits and still needed.  In the end, the girls assembled 20 NICU Care Kits, and had about 30 more partial kits of extras.

In alignment of the “Agent of Change” Journey, not only were the girls able to get their community involved, but they also learned more about the community. For example, some of the snack bars were donated by Don’t Go Nuts, a local company that produces snacks that are completely nut-free, from the moment the ingredients are grown until they are produced in the facility.  They learned that this company was founded by a 14-year-old girl, not much older than them. Because she had life-threatening peanut and tree nut allergies, she wanted wholesome snacks that you didn’t have to fear were contaminated.  This was relatable to the girls, and an opportunity for them to see another girl not much older or different from them making a difference.

The girls began this project in November 2017, but between research and planning, participating in the Girl Scout Cookie Program, and other troop events, they completed it when the kits were delivered to UCHealth on June 20, 2018. The girls have already received thank you letters from parents who received their kits.

Hello, 

I have a baby in the NICU in Denver. I received the sweetest care package from Junior Girl Scout Troop 1631 out of Highlands Ranch. It was amazingly thoughtful and practical. Thought you should know about the awesome work they’re doing. 

I’m also staying at the Ronald McDonald House Aurora while my baby is in the NICU. Every time we see the Girl Scouts on the volunteer list we get excited. They are always great dinners that you can tell the girls were helping to create ( not just adults doing it all). The troops I know about serving us dinner are Troop 2246 and Troop 3687. There was another and I’m sorry I don’t know what troop they were with. They made kabobs that were cooked to perfection. 

I just wanted to reach out so you can tell them we really do appreciate all they have done for us during this time. 

Sincerely, 

Annie and JD (and baby Joey)

Hello,

I received the sweetest care package today from your Girl Scout group and I just wanted to say thanks. I wasn’t able to meet the girls because I was holding my baby, but I was truly blessed by their effort and thoughtfulness. It really made my day. Please let them know that I’m so thankful they were here today, and to keep caring for others. 

Thank you!

Krisangela

 

Openings for Urban Trails Day Camp July 30 – Aug. 3

Submitted by Tiffany Stone

Metro Denver

Denver

There are still TWO more ADULT VOLUNTEER openings for the Urban Trail service unit’s upcoming day camp!

Details:
Urban Trails Day Camp
Cherry Creek State Park
July 30 – August 3, 2018

Perks:
A 90% DISCOUNT for your girl to go to this day camp. The whole week of camp will cost around $20!
Frappacinos galore
Canoeing
Awesome Girl Scout Brownies and Juniors to hang with all week
Free hat
Lessons and activities already planned
AMAZING PA helpers and AMAZING adults to work with

The Catch?:
You need to volunteer the entire week. It is a 830 a.m. – 3: 30 p.m. commitment.
You will need to bring your own lunch, as all campers do.
This camp is for Brownies/Juniors and PA’s/PAI’s (no Daisies for this camp)

IF you are interested in having your girl come to this camp with you as a volunteer, please contact me ASAP at (303) 204-4675 or urbantrailsdenver@gmail.com. This offer must close on July 16!

This story was submitted using the Share Your Stories form. You can share your Girl Scout moments, too.

Earn the “Responsible Cat Ownership” patch from the International Cat Association

Girl Scout Daisies and Brownies can earn a “Responsible Cat Owner” patch from the International Cat Association (TICA) at the Denver County Fair, July 14 and 15, 2018. Patches are earned after completion of TICA’s Cat Care 101 lesson, an interactive tutorial that covers how to choose a cat and the responsibilities that go with having a kitty in your life. Girl Scouts will practice how to groom and care for a cat on plush kittens. Lessons take about 15 minutes and girls who participate will get certificate and patches.

There is no charge to earn the patch, but participants must buy an entry ticket to the fair. General Admission tickets are $10/adults and $3 for kids 3-11. Tickets can be ordered at http://www.denvercountyfair.org . For more information about the patch lesson schedule, please contact Jackie Rose at cuddlebugpersians@msn.com.

The fair will be held at the National Western Event Complex at 4655 Humboldt Street in Denver. TICA is the world’s largest registry of pedigreed and household cats. TICA will host a variety of family-friendly feline activities at the fair including cat shows, feline agility demonstrations, painting classes and more. For more information, please contact cuddlebugpersians@msn.com.

Earn your “Horsemanship” badge with Colorado Reining Heroes

Submitted by Gabriella Grieve

Metro Denver

Parker

Girl Scout Juniors can earn their “Horsemanship” badge with Colorado Reigning Heroes in 2018! Learn about horses and complete requirements for this badge. The class will cover grooming, handling, learning the body language of a horse, riding, and more!

Dates: September 8, 16, 22, and 30; October 6, 20, and 28; November 3 and 17; December 1 and 15; and January 5

Time: 1-3 p.m.

Cost: $40/Girl Scout. Class is limited to 10 girls.

Register: Please email Paula Quillen at Colorado Reigning Heroes at reigningheroes@yahoo.com to register and for payment instructions. Registration will include permission, liability, and photo release forms that will need to be completed before the event.

Registration Deadline: August 25

Classes may be held outdoors or inside an arena depending on weather. Girls need to wear appropriate clothing including long pants and closed toe shoes. Helmets will be available for riders.

For more information about Colorado Reigning Heroes visit http://www.coloradoreiningheroes.com/.

Questions? Please contact Paula Quillen at
reigningheroes@yahoo.com. Paula is happy to have prospective troops tour the barn before registering by appointment.

This story was submitted using the Share Your Stories form. You can share your Girl Scout moments, too.

Gold Award Girl Scout: Katherine Walden, Larkspur, “BeeBoxin’”

What did you do for your Gold Award project?

My project addressed the decline in local bee species, such as the leaf cutter and mason bee. Over the past several decades, local bee species have been quietly slipping into extinction leaving the ecosystem a step behind in facing such a large issue.

While bees themselves may be small, the impact and power they hold on our ecosystem is immense. However, too often their role is overlooked and not taken into consideration by much of the population. Before I started this project, eating meals was no more than a passing thought and I never thought where the food was coming from that I was ingesting. Once I began my project though, I discovered that 1/3 of every bite of food comes from the bees and the plants and crops they pollinate. Simply put without the bees, we would starve, and be forced to find expensive and alternative solutions for feeding the population.

The focus of my project was to go to elementary schools and teach about bees and install bee boxes that local bee species and other pollinators can call home. Most people don’t know a lot about bees especially local bees. Commonly people think of honeybees, however these are not included in the local bee species. Going into these schools and teaching allowed me to clear up the distinction and show just how important the local bee species are. In addition, I was able to highlight some of the factors that are causing local bee population decline including habitat destruction from wildfires and development.

How did you measure the impact your Gold Award project made on your target audience?

My presentations were interactive and engaging, which allowed students to ask and answer questions. Following the presentation, we were able to go outside and pick a spot to hang the bee box and using what they learned in the presentation, were able to pick out a location for the bee box. Before every presentation I would ask the kids, “What do you already know about bees?”

Being kids, I would always receive crazy ideas and stories, but then to watch the shift from general awe, to impactful interest was truly amazing. When kids start to realize that they can make a difference is something that can’t be under-appreciated.

How is your project sustainable? How will your project continue to impact after your involvement?

There are two main project impacts that are foreseeable in the future. The first being a less drastic decline in local bee populations. With the bee boxes now in place, local bees now have an additional location to nest and work. Another impact would be that now kids have learned about the importance of bees in the community and can go spread this knowledge to others to hopefully continue to spread the word on bees.

What is your project’s global and/or national connection?

My plan started in Larkspur and spread along the Front Range ranging from Monument to Sedalia. These three different locations were sought out because they allowed for different groups of students to come in and learn about the bee boxes, but also were placed so that they could hold an impact on the surrounding area. All three locations are somewhat rural and have gardens and the boxes should be utilized by local bees the area to increase pollination. On a national level, people from across the nation come to the Stone Canyon Discovery Ranch and will be able to learn about the bee boxes and what they provide. There is potential if there is interest for them to take a box back to their home because extra boxes were provided to the ranch so that they can be spread across the country.

Although I did complete the national requirement, I would have liked to been able to deliver the boxes to other states myself however, the time and resources needed were not achievable. Regardless, I am excited to hear from the people who take boxes from Stone Canyon and where they end up.

What did you learn about yourself?

I learned to communicate more effectively with a broad range of individuals of all ages. As I begin my career as a cadet at the United States Air Force Academy, it is vital that I be able to communicate and be confident in what I am talking about. This project taught me to do just that, as people expected that I know the content of my project and be able to answer and questions and solve and issues that arose with the project. Whether it be teaching about bees, or guiding a plane to take off, I know that I am now better equipped to be assertive and knowledgeable in whatever role I fill.

How will earning your Gold Award impact you in the future?

Before this project, I tended to be more passive and not want to go against the crowd of what people were saying. However, it has become apparent, especially in society today, that change will not occur if you are passive or refuse to share out. It is of the upmost vitality that individuals speak up and project issues that otherwise might continue to go unnoticed. By not only pointing out an issue, but being able to do something to resolve such has provided me with the experience of being able to instill change and reflect on how action caused resolution. This realization and viewpoint will propel me into my career as a military officer, whose duty is to solve and address issues that face our nation and military.

Why do you feel the Gold Award was an important part of your Girl Scout experience?

The Gold Award was a closing step on my Girl Scout career and brought all the skills I had acquired over the years full circle. It was very exciting to be able to come up with an idea and then put in into action. Had I not done my Gold Award, I think I would have felt like I didn’t finish something and that there was stuff left to do.

How did earning your Gold Award help you become a G.I.R.L. (go-getter, innovator, risk-taker, leader)? 

Not only did I discover a lot about bees with this project, but I also discovered a lot about myself. I learned that I enjoy teaching and being able to answer questions that people have. Of course, this seems like a common practice especially in high school, however, teaching about it to a younger generation was something special that I enjoyed. In addition, it allowed me to better understand what it means to truly be a Girl Scout- bringing about change and inspiring others to do the same.

Each one of my presentations was done with a new set of students and teachers. This allowed me to work with so many different people of all ages and understanding which bettered how I could teach about bees and make it so it had the most impact on each audience member. In addition, I learned how to communicate with staff so their classes benefitted and the content I was teaching could be incorporated into their lessons plans. By going to different locations and teaching, I was able to see how each site was going to be impacted differently.

The issue that I addressed was the decline in local bee species. My resolution to this problem was to build bee boxes and place them at different locations so that bees could now have a place to live. And while I can’t completely reverse what has already happened to the population, I can help reduce the negative impacts and assist the bee populations return. Most importantly, though I was able to educate and teach others about the issue our community faces. When kids got excited to go outside and place the bee box and paint their garden bee rocks was exciting and showed how I was able to create an impact.

**IMPORTANT NOTE: This blog represents only a small fraction of the hard work, dedication, and requirements that go into earning a Girl Scout Gold Award. It is simply a brief summary, which is meant to inspire Girl Scouts to Go Gold in the future. For more information on earning your Gold Award, please email highestawards@gscolorado.org

Big city fun for mountain town Cadettes

Submitted by Annie Sachs

Mountain Communities

Steamboat Springs

Steamboat Springs Cadette Troop 54538 recently celebrated earning their Bronze Award (as fifth-graders) with a Denver weekend of theater and fine dining! The girls loved the touring Broadway musical “School of Rock,” especially with all the children in the cast. They also enjoyed a behind-the-scenes tour of DCPA and capped off the weekend with the famed Brown Palace brunch. Thanks so much to the Lufkin Family for helping fund all the fun!

This story was submitted using the Share Your Stories form. You can share your Girl Scout moments, too.

Girl Scout goes the distance for #gsoutdoors Challenge

 

Submitted by Misty Roper

Northern & Northeastern CO

Estes Park

I wanted to share some of my daughter’s experiences this summer as a Girl Scout Brownie in your beautiful Colorado State Parks. Coming from out of state and different council, we definitely set out to go the distance for GSUSA’s week one challenge in honor of National Great Outdoors Month June 1 – 8, 2018. We planned this adventure since the early spring and as the days got closer the nine-hour drive was worth every minute. As a third-year Girl Scout leader for my daughter’s troop, she and I ventured out to Rocky Mountain National Park in Estes Park. We were adventurers for sure while gaining courage and building character and confidence together while embarking on difficult courses of action. Within the national park, she became a Girl Scout Service Patch recipient, Junior Ranger, and enjoyed staying in a cabin, cooking on a fire, painting outdoors, hiking along side a lake and in the national park, observing wildlife, bird watching, identifying trees, plants and animals, as well as learning about different tracks and scat of animals within the mountains. Being a part of a few ranger-led programs about bears and the history of Rocky Mountain National Park was one of her favorites, as she loves everything about history.

Natilee is 8-years-old and able to learn things and experience being bold and fearless while doing things that helped me take the risk as well. She learned for the first time how to fish, build a teepee fire to cook on, make tin foil dinners, take on a role while hiking as the trailblazer/animal detective, skipped rocks on the lake and hiked up to see the Alluvial Fan Waterfall, where she learned about rocks and minerals seeing fools gold, daringly suited up to rock climb, sat atop a viewing room with a giant telescope to learn about astronomy at night at the local Observatory, practiced wildlife safety, Leave No Trace and gave back to the animals in the area by making biodegradable bird feeders around the cabin area where we stayed.

I can explain what a change I seen in my daughter. As an only child, she and I get to experience a lot of things together, but being adventurous and being a Girl Scout along with her was forever changing. Natilee was shining with self-fulfillment and showed great leadership skills as I allowed her to lead many excursions with little adult guidance. From what we had studied beforehand, she implemented very well and cautiously. We look forward to completing activities throughout the summer in our local council with our troop to build on the traits she learned by going the distance.

In celebration of National Great Outdoors Month, Girl Scouts is excited to host four weeks of exciting outdoor challenges in June. Follow along, have fun, then make sure to share your photos on Instagram using the hashtag #gsoutdoors for a chance to win an awesome prize from the North Face! 

This story was submitted using the Share Your Stories form. You can share your Girl Scout moments, too.

Girl Scouts of Colorado