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.

Cybersecurity Connection

Submitted by Stephanie Cote

Metro Denver


Troop 66796 completed the Junior level of the cybersecurity patch requirements! They learned the vastness of the network of the Internet and the connection needed to send a message from one to another. The process showed the girls that there are many lines and servers needed for connection. They also learned “that messages going to a bad server voice back.” Because the girls wanted to include the whole troop, they discovered the time and effort needed for global connection.

The girls took the activity to another level by exploring the movement of the messages and changing the levels of down servers (as seen in the photo). They also thought of the cyberspace from our troop level to the global level.

By completing this activity, the girls will earn this special cybersecurity patch. Learn how to earn yours.

Pinewood Derby for Girl Scouts

Submitted by Ariella Wells

Northern & Northeastern CO

Fort Collins

This event is open to ALL levels of Girl Scouts. The cost is $12 per girl. This includes event registration and a fun patch. Girls will need to purchase their own official Pinewood Derby kits to make their cars (approximate cost $5).

Time and Schedule

Check-in will begin at 8 a.m. This is an all-day event. More schedule information will be available a week before the event date.


January 19, 2020 at the McKee 4H Building in Loveland


Trophies will be awarded at each level for first place, second place, third place, and best design.


For more details and to register, go to:


Please check for more details at the link above. If you still have questions, contact Sandi at sjk@frii.com.

We hope to see you there! Space is limited so you will want to register early!

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

Girl Scouts honors 2019 Women of Distinction for the Denver metro-area

Wednesday, October 30, 2019, Girl Scouts of Colorado honored the 2019 Women of Distinction during the Thin Mint Dinner at the Hyatt Regency Denver Tech Center. The 2019 Women of Distinction for the Denver metro-area are:

  • Marti J. Awad, Founding Partner, Cardan Capital Partners
  • The Honorable Dianne L. Briscoe
  • Elycia Cook, President and CEO, FRIENDS FIRST, Inc.
  • Helen Drexler, President and CEO, Delta Dental of Colorado
  • Verónica Figoli, President and CEO, Denver Public Schools Foundation
  • Helen Young Hayes, Founder and CEO, Activate Workforce Solutions
  • Vanecia B. Kerr, Regional Executive Director, College Track Colorado
  • Theresa Szczurek, Chief Information Officer and Executive Director, Colorado Governor’s Office of Information Technology
  • Dr. Sarah Winbourn, Medical Director, Kids First Health Care
  • Robin D. Wittenstein, CEO, Denver Health

A group of nearly 450 gathered at the event, which was chaired by Women of Distinction Tasha Jones ’15 and Michelle Lucero ‘13. The honorees were selected by a committee of their peers led by Selection Chair Kim Bimestefer ‘15. They are shining examples of corporate, civic, and philanthropic leadership and serve as role models for our female leaders of tomorrow.

New for 2019! Girl Scouts of Colorado recognized the first-ever Corporate Champion – Crocs! This award recognizes hard work in advancing women in their industry, supporting and encouraging women and girls, and working to raise awareness about remarkable women.

The evening’s keynote speaker was Gold Award Girl Scout Emily Kretschmer from Colorado Springs and recipient of the Stephanie A. Foote Leadership Prize for Gold Award Excellence.

Click here to see pictures from the event! And, be sure to watch Emily’s keynote speech, and listen to the inspiring words from our 2019 Honorees and Corporate Champion, Crocs!

Thank you to all of our generous event sponsors, including Silver Presenting Sponsor, Crocs, and Samoa Sponsors: Arrow, BBVA Compass, Cardan Capital Partners, Delta Dental, Hogan Lovells, and Volunteers of America.

Since 1997 Girl Scouts of Colorado has recognized 446 Denver-area women with this honor. More than $2 million has been raised by Women of Distinction for Girl Scout programs.

For more information on the Girl Scouts Women of Distinction program, visit girlscoutsofcolorado.org/woddenver or contact heidi.books@gscolorado.org or (303) 607-4833.



Submitted by Nicki Meldrum

Northern & Northeastern CO


Troop 76011 learned about layers of cybersecurity by drawing castles with their layers of protection. The girls had a blast creating castles decked out with security cameras, moats, alligators, and pickles! (Yes, pickles!!) They learned the importance of passwords and the how and why of protecting our information on the Internet. Next, they used that information to explore the Internet safely.

By completing this activity, the girls will earn this special cybersecurity patch. Learn how to earn yours.

Girl Scouts honors 2019 Women of Distinction for the Western Slope-area


Thursday, November 7, 2019, Girl Scouts of Colorado honored the 2019 Women of Distinction during a breakfast held at Two Rivers Convention Center. 2019 Women of Distinction for the Western Slope-area are:

  • Jenn Moore, Executive Director of the EUREKA! McConnell Science Museum
  • Angelina Salazar, CEO, Western Healthcare Alliance
  • Diane Schwenke, President & CEO, Grand Junction Area Chamber of Commerce

A group of nearly 330 gathered at the event, which was chaired by Women of Distinction LeAnn Zetmeir ’18. The honorees were selected by a committee of their peers led by Selection Chair Jeni Brown ‘18. They are shining examples of corporate, civic, and philanthropic leadership and serve as role models for our female leaders of tomorrow. The morning’s keynote speakers were Gold Award Girl Scout Kyra TerLouw and Silver Award Girl Scout Bella Gigoux.

Since 2013, Girl Scouts of Colorado has recognized 21 Grand Junction-area women with this honor. More than $42,000 was raised at this year’s breakfast for Girl Scout programs. Thank you to our Gold Presenting Sponsor, U.S. Bank, and Silver Presenting Sponsors Chevron and FCI Constructors.

For more information on the Girl Scouts Women of Distinction program, visit our website –http://www.girlscoutsofcolorado.org/wodgj – or contact Cindi Graves Cindi.graves@gscolorado.org or (970) 628-8003.

Click here for photos from the event. 

Girl Scout Craft Fair

Submitted by Tiffany Stone

Metro Denver


Join Girl Scouts in Denver for our third annual Girl Scout Craft Fair on Saturday, November 16, 2019 from 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.  at Bethany Lutheran Church (4500 Hampden Ave.  Denver 80113). These entrepreneurs have been working hard creating, testing out, and finalizing their products! All items will be under $20.  All items are girl created, designed, and made!  Bring your friends and family to this fun event to start your holiday season.

*pictures are from last years craft fair.


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

Girls learn “Secrets to Success” from Colorado Springs businesswomen

More than 100 girls in grades 6-12 from along the Front Range gathered on Saturday, November 9, 2019 at Pikes Peak Community College in Colorado Springs for a unique opportunity to connect with Colorado Springs-area professional women in a speed-networking format, panel discussion, and networking lunch. “Secrets to Success,” powered by Girl Scouts of Colorado, introduced girls to more than  20 professional women, including Colorado Springs Police Commander Tish Olszewski and Noreen Landis-Tyson, who runs one of the largest and most complex nonprofits in the Pikes Peak region, CPCD…giving children a head start. Breakout sessions went deeper into career options, such as law enforcement, the military, skilled trades, education, STEM, public service, healthcare, and entrepreneurship.

Special thanks to event sponsors: El Pomar Foundation, Nor’wood Development Group, Ent Credit Union, Eastern Colorado Bank, Union Pacific Foundation, and Hoff & Leigh.


Gold Award Girl Scout: Emma Downing, Colorado Springs, “Toys for TESSA: Re-doing the Children’s Play space inside the TESSA Safehouse”

What did you do for your Gold Award project?

For my project, I completely remodeled the children’s space inside of the TESSA safehouse, as well as provided inventory boxes for the residents which can be used to store and catalog their personal belongings.

I chose this project because, after my initial meeting with A TESSA administrator,  I could see that TESSA, despite all of their amazing work, occasionally struggles to create a welcoming space for families staying in their safe house, and especially with creating a space dedicated solely to kids, but still easily managed by parents and safe-house staff. I could see that children needed a space where they could just be kids, to allow them to build positive relationships among themselves and with other children, and to escape some of the trauma they have undoubtedly experienced.

Similarly, I could see a clear need for a dedicated personal space for the safehouse residents to store their belongings. I felt that the inventory box portion of the project would give residents a sense of belonging for the duration of their stay, and help give some sense of order and perhaps even mitigate anxieties they may have after experiencing  an amazingly traumatic situation, I felt my project for the safehouse had the potential to have an immense and far reaching impact on many lives; which Is ultimately why I chose this as my project.

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

The most profound example of the impact of my project that I saw was the direct feedback from the families in the safehouse, and the impact redoing the space  had on their lives. One Saturday, when my mom and I were stocking the space with toys, several women came up to us. A couple asked if we flipped houses for a living, one young mother came up to us – nearly in tears – thanking us for what we were doing for the house, and many others remarked how wonderful it was as they walked by. Unparalleled to their reactions, however, were the reactions of the children. We hardly took the first box of toys off of our cart before the kids had opened it and began looking in wonder at all of the new toys. Kids of all ages began playing with one another and were just unimaginably excited. Someone even remarked that it was like Christmas and their birthday all in one.

The following week, when I delivered the inventory boxes to TESSA, I did not have the time to personally visit the safehouse and my play space, but the staff members I spoke to were moved almost to the point of tears. They kept reiterating how amazing I was, and how much I had done to change things for the better. One staff member told me that I had “completely changed the atmosphere of the entire house” and the adults and children were coming together to play, make art, and keep the space clean and organized in ways that were unprecedented before. And to me, this positive impact on those inside the Safehouse is the most meaningful thing my Gold award accomplished.

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

After my involvement, my project will be sustained in several ways. The play space will be cleaned and maintained by safehouse residents and staff, and the space will be restocked with toys from the donations TESSA regularly receives as needed. As for the inventory box portion, I have created an information letter written in both English and Spanish, as well as an inventory sheet, which can be easily copied after the originals (which I bound together like a legal pad) run out. Similarly, I have received promises from the TESSA safehouse staff to offer the inventory boxes to existing and incoming residents for as long as possible. Due to the clandestine nature of the safehouse program, and privacy of the residents, I could not explain the inventory box program to the women and children inside the safehouse personally, but I received lots of enthusiasm from the staff members, as well as promises to present and maintain the program for years to come.

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

Several months prior to me beginning my Gold Award project, I read an article for a homework assignment about the Syrian refugee crisis, and more specifically about the intense psychological trauma – trauma so severe it should be called “Human Devastation Syndrome” rather than PTSD – experienced by the children and their families, who had fled unimaginable situations of violence, war, devastation, and gone toward an equally uncertain and frightening future. The article focused on the severely under addressed need for psychological care and trauma management among these survivors; and particularly the need to reshape trauma as it happened for the countless children arriving to Europe as refugees – turning the terrified children into brave heroes who had saved their families and ensured their safe travels across the Mediterranean sea.

When I first toured the safehouse at TESSA as I was searching for a Gold Award project, I realized that these women and children who have fled horrible situation of domestic violence and abuse are in their own way, refugees. These women and children turn to TESSA for an escape and for hope. While TESSA does an amazing job of focusing on the psychological care of women and children in the community, they cannot meet every need that occurs. I wanted to provide for these children a place to just play, and be kids; possibly helping to reframe some of the traumas they had experienced, just as crisis workers in the Mediterranean are attempting to do.

What did you learn about yourself?

I have learned many things over the course of this project including the importance of patience and time management, adaptive problem solving, and even some cabinetry skills! Firstly, I had several instances of “email tag” where I would send an email, only to have the recipient be out of town, and then have them reply while I was out of town or service. This generalized delay in communications (again, it was summertime and I and others are balancing work and the other events of life) did occasionally present some setbacks. For example, while I began work on my project in April, I could not get my official proposal approved until June due to various conflicts in the month of May. This instance and other things like it helped me develop some patience, and adaptability – as my timeline for this project was radically adjusted more than once.

Similarly, when planning my money earning activity, I originally wanted to organize a community yard sale where people could rent spaces to sell their stuff, and I contacted Sunrise Church to see about using their parking lot for this event. I did not immediately hear from their operations manager, and although I eventually got approval, I did not have a single community member ask to reserve a space at the sale and was forced to cancel it last minute. Instead, however, I was able to organize a babysitting night, which turned out to be very successful, and I was able to complete the project without a hitch! I know that many people, myself included, were concerned that  I was attempting to complete my Gold Award on such short notice, but through the process I discovered that I can work well under pressure, as I can better focus my energies and work with direction and purpose, which results in a project that is both thorough and well executed. And while it has been a bit stressful having my absolute deadline for completion of my Gold Award and my departure for college happen in the same weekend, I feel that it has not negatively impacted my project and I have learned from the experience.

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

Earning my Gold Award project has made me a more aware and active citizen at both the local and global levels. It has also given me the tools to take agency in my own life and the confidence to act on my ideas, and to do things purely for the benefit of others. It has shown me that I can do whatever I set my mind to, and has opened a new world of opportunities for me as a Gold Award recipient by showing others that I have the dedication to see a project like this through.

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

For me, earning my Gold Award is the culmination of my entire Girl Scout experience, and the chance for me to use all that I have learned as a Girl Scout to do something impactful for others. Personally, it has given me a new sense of confidence and has shown me that I can absolutely make an impact on the world at large and on things that I am passionate about. Its one of the most incredible things for me to be able to talk about something of this magnitude and say, “I did that!”.

Without my years of Girl Scouts experience, however, I do not think I would have had the wherewithal and the skills required to plan, organize, and execute this project as fully as I did, which makes the  experience all the more valuable. Through the course of my time in Girl Scouts, and through this project; I have learned so many valuable skills, had unforgettable experiences, and made some of my closest friends, all of which I would not trade for the world.

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

Through my Gold Award Project, I used every aspect of the G.I.R.L. platform to accomplish my goals. I was a “go-getter” because I understood from very early on that I had a limited amount of time to complete my project and was able to plan and set a timetable for everything that needed to get done. I was an “innovator” because I was able to improvise and revise my project when things didn’t work out exactly the way I thought they would, and because I was able to find a creative solution to a difficult problem in my community. I was a “risk-taker” because when I decided to take on this project, I did not know if it would ever get off the ground, but I decided that I was going to finish the project regardless of what went wrong along the way. And finally, I was a “leader” because I was able to ask for and organize help to complete my project, and bring people together to work toward a common cause and do something good.

**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


Girl Scout Destinations: Have a life-changing adventure next summer

Girl Scout Cadette, Senior, and Ambassadors:

On November 6, 2019, Girl Scouts of Colorado sent out an email encouraging you to apply for a Girl Scout Destination. Well, we had a little technology issue and the dates were wrong from the application submission deadline. Here is the correct information:

Girl applications are due with completed references for Round 1 by December 1, 2019. We encourage girls to complete their application by November 15 to allow time for their references to complete their reference form.

If you do not get your application completed by December 1, 2019, you can still apply in the Round 2, which applications with completed references are due by February 15, 2020.

Also, Girl Scouts in Colorado traveling on GSUSA Destinations are invited to apply for financial assistance to support trips confirmed or completed by December 31, 2020. Application closes on March 6, 2020 and girls will be notified by March 13, 2020.

Sorry again for any confusion this may have caused. If you have any other questions, please email GirlExperience@gscolorado.org.

Cybersecurity egg drop challenge

Submitted by Carol Raburn

Pikes Peak

Colorado Springs

Girl Scout Brownies of mixed age Troop 40132 in Colorado Springs had a blast learning about the layers of security needed when we’re online. The girls worked in teams or on their own to create layers of security for a troop egg drop! All teams had so much fun and all eggs survived!

Each Girl Scout has come up with fun ideas about how to stay safe when playing and learning online. They’re so excited to earn this extra special patch!

By completing this activity, the girls will earn this special cybersecurity patch. Learn how to earn yours.












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

Girl Scouts of Colorado