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.

Girl Scouting at Home: “Think Like a Citizen Scientist” Challenges Part Four of Four

Girl Scouts of Colorado’s Outreach Program team has developed a series of “Think Like a Citizen Scientist” Challenges for the week of June 1, 2020. These activities aren’t Girl Scout level-specific. However, they would probably be best for Girl Scout Daisies, Brownies, and Juniors. Each activity correlates with the Think Like a Citizen Scientist Journeys and are weather-related.

For your last challenge, you are going to make your own wind vane! Using a paper plate, cup, pencil, and string, girls will create their own wind vane, so they can tell which direction the wind is blowing.

Previous Challenges:

We want to hear how your girl is using her Girl Scout skills by taking initiative, caring for the community, and Girl Scouting at home. She can send in her story here.

 

Hecho en Colorado Coloring Book

The Hecho en Colorado Coloring Book started as a way of bringing creativity and inspiration to our community at a time when schools and cultural institutions are closed.

Link to the coloring book: https://f7f33c97-654f-4a5f-87e3-44c23a0b2713.filesusr.com/ugd/86d3e7_a994243164e6472fa23248c5f30de78b.pdf

The Latino Cultural Arts Center thanks all the contributing artists for making the first coloring book of Colorado-based Latinx artists a success! Together, we will make it through this!

Send some love to these artists! Please take a moment to reflect on what this coloring book means to you and your family and share it on social media by tagging @Latino Cultural Arts Center on Facebook! Also, be sure to share on the GSCO Blog, Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Twitter and Instagram users should also use #GSColo.

Contributing Artists:

  • Cal Duran
  • Carlota EspinoZa
  • Javier Flores
  • Carlos Fresquez
  • David Ocelotl GarcĂ­a
  • QuintĂ­n González
  • JOLT
  • Karma Leigh
  • Arlette Lucero
  • Stevon Lucero
  • Emanuel MartĂ­nez
  • Norberto Mojardin
  • Adolfo Romero
  • Ana Marina Sanchez
  • Carlos Sandoval
  • Armando Silva
  • Leo Tanguma

Forthcoming Artists:

  • Al Cardenas
  • Juan Fuentes & Mateo Rodriguez
  • Santiago Jaramillo
  • Daniel Salazar

We want to hear how your girl is using her Girl Scout skills by taking initiative, caring for the community, and Girl Scouting at home. She can send in her story here.

Nicole and Xena’s Coronavirus Silver Award Project

Submitted by Cari Sledge

Pikes Peak

Colorado Springs

We are Nicole and Xena, Girl Scout Cadettes from Troop 43893. We are in seventh grade at Timberview Middle School. We have completed our Silver Award, the highest award a Girl Scout Cadette can earn. A Girl Scout Cadette receives her Silver Award after completing a Take Action project to improve an issue in her community that she really cares about. We decided that we wanted our Take Action project to help people in our community who were selflessly helping our community during the COVID-19 pandemic. We chose to make reusable cloth masks for the Sodexo kitchen staff who work from Timberview Middle School’s kitchens to provide lunches to the students in Academy District 20 who would normally use the free lunch program.

During our Take Action project, we made 70 reusable cloth masks for our kitchen staff who are part of Sodexo. After the schools were closed as a response to the COVID-19 virus pandemic, the kitchen staff continued to prepare meals, four days a week, to provide lunch for the school children who received free lunches during the school year. We met Mrs. Yesmin, Mrs. Eli, and Mrs. Kathy from Sodexo. Mrs. Kathy helped us deliver the masks to Sodexo as they didn’t want any outside people in the kitchens to help prevent the possible spread of germs. We chose to provide masks so the Sodexo workers could be in a safer environment while continuing to give lunches to the students who don’t have access to lunches at their homes.

We made the masks with two pieces of fabric, ribbon, and a nose piece. First, we sewed the nose piece on one piece of fabric, and then we sewed the fabrics together and ironed the seams open and flat. Next, we turned the fabric right side out and sewed the passageway for the ribbon. Last, we put the ribbon into the masks, and they were ready to be given to Sodexo. We delivered 70 masks to Mrs. Kathy on May 3, 2020, and they were distributed between the 35 staff members on May 4, 2020.

We connected with our local and global communities by making masks for the Sodexo staff to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. The impact our Take Action project had on our community was a safer work environment for Sodexo staff. Also, because the masks we made are washable, they will be better for the environment than having to throw away mask after mask and having to buy more. The impact of our project will go on past our involvement because by keeping the kitchen staff safe it creates a safer environment for those who receive lunch from Sodexo and for all who come in contact with Sodexo staff on a daily basis including their families.

What I discovered about myself was that I’m even worse at socializing now that I have only socialized with the same people for about three months. I learned that I am more socially awkward than I thought and that I am scared of sewing machines. The skills we gained that help us as leaders were confidence to socialize with people we didn’t know and compassion to care about the kitchen staff’s wellbeing along with the people the kitchen staff come in contact with. We also learned how to be better at talking to people, asking for help, and accepting help from others. What we learned from others who worked to solve the same problem was how to make the masks, and that the nose pieces will break your needle if you’re not careful. This helped make our project better because it helped us make the masks properly, efficiently, and correctly to help us protect the people wearing them.

We lived the Girl Scout Promise and Law by helping our community. We used our resources wisely by using what we already had at our disposal. We respected ourselves and others by being kind to our kitchen staff and each other. We made the world a better place by helping prevent the spread of COVID-19. Finally, we were considerate and caring of Sodexo’s need for supplies.

A Silver Award Take Action project should provide a solution to an issue that matters to us. We believe that we did a good job and accomplished what we originally aimed to do which was provide support to people helping during the COVID-19 pandemic. We are happy that we have succeeded in making our kitchen staff’s work environment safer for themselves and the meal recipients.

We want to hear how your girl is using her Girl Scout skills by taking initiative, caring for the community, and Girl Scouting at home. She can send in her story here.

Learn the Tomahawk Ranch Song

GSCO Camp Staff at Tomahawk Ranch kicks off every summer by singing the Tomahawk Ranch song! Join us on Instagram at @tomahawkranch for a virtual campfire on June 7, 2020 at 7 p.m. to kickoff our summer season. Learn the Tomahawk Ranch song with these lyrics, notes, and cords:

Tomahawk Song: Lyrics and Notes

You can also send us a video of you singing or playing the song to TomahawkRanch@gscolorado.org. We will compile all the videos for a fun collaboration for our closing of summer programming.

Girl Scouting at Home: “Think Like a Citizen Scientist” Challenges Part Thee of Four

Girl Scouts of Colorado’s Outreach Program team has developed a series of “Think Like a Citizen Scientist” Challenges for the week of June 1, 2020. These activities aren’t Girl Scout level-specific. However, they would probably be best for Girl Scout Daisies, Brownies, and Juniors. Each activity correlates with the Think Like a Citizen Scientist Journeys and are weather-related.

For your next challenge, you are going to make your own sundial, using a paper plate and pencil. Girls will learn about the rotation of the Earth and how they can use that to tell the time!

Previous Challenges:

We want to hear how your girl is using her Girl Scout skills by taking initiative, caring for the community, and Girl Scouting at home. She can send in her story here.

 

 

World Thinking Day 2020 Activities

Submitted by Debby Burnett

Mountain Communities

Cowdrey

Gracelyn read the World Thinking Day 2020 Activity Guide and came up with a plan to focus on diversity. She made a DEI (diversity, equity, inclusion) collage with pictures of diverse people, as well as the word “diversity” printed in various languages around the perimeter. She made a word web with her name in the middle, listing various characteristics and qualities that define her (for the “I Am” Circles game). Gracelyn and I (her fellow Girl Scout troop member due to the pandemic restrictions) made observations at our local (tiny) post office as it pertains to inclusion of those with disabilities in our community. She decided that there are several limiting factors that need to be addressed.

She and I went “shopping” in the Global Marketplace and learned a lot of hard lessons about how it might be to live with much less than we have right now, what is the most important (clean water, good food, education), and how to spend our money in the best way. This made us both very appreciative of the good fortune in our lives, even if we are struggling to live with the social distancing restrictions imposed by the pandemic.

Finally, Gracelyn focused on a group of people in our community whom she feels may not be treated with the respect that they deserve, our seniors. Gracelyn designed a Take Action project to focus on senior residents at Casey’s Pond in Steamboat Springs. She folded approximately 80 origami cranes and wrote the word “RESPECT” on their backs. Then, she made little pieces of paper with the word “RESPECT” written on it, with the words detailed out: Really Epic Senior People Existing Community Treasures. She was trying to send each resident at Casey’s Pond the message that they are truly community treasures and deserve our respect.

Gracelyn enjoyed this activity, improved her origami skills, and felt good about sending a positive message to the senior residents at Casey’s Pond.

Gracelyn is a member of Troop 50315 in Steamboat Springs. She is completing Girl Scout activities at home, with her mother as her main troop member at this time due to pandemic restrictions, but is eagerly looking forward to troop meetings in the future.

We want to hear how your girl is using her Girl Scout skills by taking initiative, caring for the community, and Girl Scouting at home. She can send in her story here.

GSCO Event Cancellation Update

Girl Scouts of Colorado is extending the suspension of all in-person gatherings through June 30, 2020. We ask that you cancel or reschedule any meetings or activities planned for in-person and move to virtual when possible. This also includes all trips and travel for troops. We realize guidelines vary in counties around the state, but because we serve the entire state, our decisions are made for the council as a whole.

We will continue to monitor state health and governor guidelines, re-evaluate our status every two weeks, and are working toward a set of guidelines to allow troops to meet in person later in the summer.

What we stand for

Girl Scouts of Colorado CEO Leanna Clark

Dear Girl Scout community,

I’m proud to be part of the Girl Scout community  —  a place  where the fundamental values of respect for all and inclusivity are at the core of our being. For more than 100 years, we’ve prepared girls to lead, to speak up and speak out, and to take action for change.

As we try to process what happened in Minnesota to George Floyd, in Atlanta to Ahmaud Arbery, and in Louisville to Breonna Taylor; as we grasp the reality of the protests here in Colorado and around the nation; and we see violent images on the nightly news and in our social media feeds, I ask our Girl Scout community to stand together and support each other.

We need to live the words of our Promise and Law now more than ever. Now is the time to be courageous and strong, to respect ourselves and others, make the world a better place, and be a sister to every Girl Scout.

We are better together.

Although I’m new here (just starting my second week as CEO), I’ve already felt the warm embrace of this community. We are here for you. For those of us experiencing racism, we are holding you close. And for those standing as an ally, we stand with you.

As a girl-serving organization, we know your heart will turn to “how do I address this with my children?” so we’ve asked our Chief Outdoor Programs Officer Lindsay Standish, who is a child life specialist and recreation therapist, to provide some resources and tips because we know these conversations are difficult and important. In addition, these resources specific to talking about race may be useful as well.

Part of our mission is to make the world a better place. Today, we are called upon to recommit to that mission as a community.  We have a long way to go, but as Girl Scouts, I know we are up for it.

Sincerely,

Leanna Clark
Chief Executive Officer
Girl Scouts of Colorado

 

Talking to your girls about what’s happening

By Lindsay Standish
child life specialist, recreation therapist

Although it might be an uncomfortable conversation and you probably don’t have all the answers, we encourage you to talk to your children about race, privilege, and the protests happening around the country.

While I am not an expert on race relations, my 10 years as a child life specialist and recreation therapist have given me experience in guiding children through difficult conversations.

If your kids are feeling anxious and stressed, a combination of discussing what is happening and identifying positive coping strategies that work well for your child will be helpful in navigating these challenging topics. Creating a safe space for children to explore these issues is essential.

Use these tips to guide your discussion:

Discuss what is going on, letting the child’s age and level of development guide you.Identify the facts and address any questions and misinformation.

Questions to ask your child:

  • What do they know about what is going on?
  • What questions do they have about what is happening?
  • If you are uncertain about the best way to answer a question it is important to be honest and share that you are still learning as an adult too.

Validate that your child’s feelings and concerns are real and important. 

  • Ask your child, “How do you feel about the information you’ve heard?”
  • Respect their fears- no matter what they are.
  • Practice active listening to validate what they have shared. Reflect or repeat back what they are saying and what they may be feeling to make sure you understand.

“It sounds like you are fearful that ___ may happen.” When you restate or paraphrase what has been said, your child has an opportunity to step back and reevaluate their statements and feelings

  • If your child shares that they feel unsafe, help them think of ways to feel safe and let them know what you are doing to help keep them safe.

There are developmentally appropriate ways to talk to children of all ages about these difficult issues.

For school-age children (ages 6-12), in addition to talking with your children, be sure to provide opportunities for your child to play. Children often process and express their feelings through pretending and play. Observing their play can help adults better understand children’s thoughts and concerns. It’s important to create ways for your child to communicate their worries, thoughts, or questions. Activities can provide an outlet for children no matter what age to express their feelings in less formal or intimidating ways. These activities can also become part of daily routines to promote positive communication and sharing feelings.

Developmentally appropriate books on the topics of race, diversity, discrimination, and important related topics can be helpful resources.

For teenagers, it is important to give opportunities for open and honest discussion. Be available while also respecting their need for privacy. Teens’ worlds are more likely to include current events and social media, which can be used to help explore their reactions.

Both school-aged children and teens can be empowered by asking them how they can help create change for their community. This can be a time to discuss what courage, confidence, and character mean to them in relation to what is going on in their community and the world.

An age-appropriate explanation is better than silence because no child is too young to learn about appreciating and valuing other humans – especially those who, at first glance – might seem different from themselves.

And since you’re talking to a Girl Scout, you’ll have no problem balancing the conversation with the possibilities of change and a better future. Because that is what we’re all about.

Lindsay Standish is the Girl Scouts of Colorado outdoor programs chief officer and is also a child life specialist and recreation therapist.

Connections: June 2020

 

 

 

 

Join us for a virtual Campfire Chat

As Girl Scouts of Colorado’s Board Chair, let me introduce you to Leanna Clark, our incoming CEO. While I would prefer do so in person, virtually will have to do for now.

History is on our side as Stephanie departs and Leanna arrives. Over the years, you benefited from the legacy Stephanie created. Turns out Stephanie’s retirement aligns with World War II Memorial dedication date (2004), another powerful legacy. Wow!

Leanna, a Colorado native, is poised to ensure our ongoing success of providing amazing Girl Scout experiences. Leanna began the same day in history of Sonia Sotomayor’s nomination to serve as the first Hispanic Supreme Court Justice (2008).  A fitting highlight our Movement’s diversity, equity and inclusion strategy.

Do you think we can serve every Colorado girl? I do, especially considering the depth and breadth of Leanna’s experience. Exhilarating when our future is so bright.

We’re so excited to welcome Leanna Clark as Girl Scouts of Colorado’s new CEO. In her first few weeks, she’s looking forward to “meeting” a wide variety of Girl Scouts of Colorado stakeholders and is excited to learn more about our Girl Scout community statewide.

GSCO Event Cancellation Update

Girl Scouts of Colorado is extending the suspension of all in-person gatherings through June 30. We ask that you cancel or reschedule any meetings or activities planned for in-person and move to virtual when possible. This also includes all trips and travel for troops. We realize guidelines vary in counties around the state, but because we serve the entire state, our decisions are made for the council as a whole.

We will continue to monitor state health and governor guidelines, re-evaluate our status every two weeks, and are working toward a set of guidelines to allow troops to meet in person later in the summer.

Renew Your Girl Scout Membership Today

While many events girls look forward to have been canceled, Girl Scouts can carry on. Stay connected while earning badges virtually; and participate in live, virtual events and safe service projects to stay engaged and inspired. And, although we have to be physically apart right now, we’re looking forward to bringing Girl Scouts together for a giant friendship circle, songs, and s’mores just as soon as it’s safe!

For Girls

All girls registered by June 30 will receive a free Early Bird patch sent to her in the mail.

For Troops

All troops registered by June 30 and with a completed Annual Troop Report and ACH will receive a $25 credit to the Girl Scouts of Colorado Shop.

Girl Scout Voices Count Survey

At Girl Scouts, we care about your experience and we want to hear from you!

In May, Girl Scouts of the USA  began conducting a national survey with girls, parents/guardians, and troop leaders called Girl Scout Voices Count to find out what’s working, and what’s not, in Girl Scouts. We use your feedback to improve the Girl Scout experience for all families and volunteers.

Surveys were delivered via email on May 6 and will close on June 3 at 9:59 p.m. As a thank you, everyone who completes their survey will have a chance to win 1 of 20 $50 gift cards! Be sure to check your email for the invitation to participate.

Got questions? Email GSVoicesCount@girlscouts.org.

Girl Scouts at Home

Badge Series

Girl Scouts of Colorado is excited to unveil a new way for your girl to connect with Girl Scouts and for leaders to support their girls’ engagement. Starting in June 2020, we will offer monthly badge series for Daisies through Ambassadors, in a virtual setting.  Read more about it on our blog.

National Service Projects

We are proud to be a part of the larger Girl Scout Movement, which is serving our country and our world. Girl Scouts have always stepped up in times of need, and our current COVID-19 crisis is no different. Across the world, Girl Scouts have leapt to the aid of others by engaging in wonderful acts of service and kindness. Now you can get involved too!

Mask-Making Service Project

With this nationwide mask-making campaign, all girls have the chance to step up to help their friends, neighbors, and frontline workers during the COVID-19 pandemic. And we’ve partnered with Feeding America, a network of local food banks across the U.S., to make it easy for your girls to amplify their efforts.

Letter-Writing Service Project

The idea is simple: Girls write letters to people in nursing homes, senior residences, and assisted living facilities, including the dedicated staff and caregivers. This long-distance hug is a way to share your good thoughts with these vulnerable and loved community members.

Upcoming Events

Following the advice of the CDC, Girl Scouts of Colorado has canceled all in-person events and activities through June 30 and all staff are working remotely. Thank you for your patience and understanding as we all work together to ensure the health and safety of our communities.

“Meet an Expert” webinar series

Girl Scouts of all ages are invited to webinars to meet professional women in different career paths. Many webinars will connect directly with an official badge. Each webinar will start with an introduction to our “co-host” followed by a lesson or activity and a moderated question-and-answer session. All webinars will be listed on the GSCO Events Calendar. Advance registration is required.

Celebrate World Environment Day – May 31-June 5

Girl Scouts of all ages are invited to register now to celebrate World Environment Day (June 5). You’ll receive an email on May 31 with a welcome video from the Global Action Team, instructions for activities based on your Girl Scout level, and a link to join a webinar on Friday, June 5, to share information about your activities and learn from other Girl Scouts your age. Anyone is welcome to complete the World Environment Day activities, but only registered attendees will be able to join the June 5 webinar.

Learn more on the GSUSA National Service Projects page.

Girl Scouts of Colorado