Category Archives: Volunteer News

Volunteer Spotlight: Amy Bissell, MCC member

How long have you been a Girl Scout?

I have been a Girl Scout for 47 years.  Some of those were girl years, but most of them are adult years. I have  been a leader of every level except Girl Scout Daisies. My favorites were 30+ years as an older girl leader/advisor. Those were great years and I have kept in touch with many of “my girls.”  It is wonderful to see how they have changed from girl to woman.

How long have you been on MCC? 

This will be my second time to be on the MCC. My first time was in 2012 for two terms, I think.

What inspired you to join MCC? 

I love Girl Scouts and I want as many girls as possible to get to be a Girl Scout. My part of Colorado covers lots of miles and there are very few girls who participate in Girl Scouting in this area.  I want to make Girl Scouting available to girls in small towns.  I want to be able to help them achieve Highest Awards, travel abroad, and go on Destinations.  I also want to show girls and leaders that they can lead and that their dreams and goals can be met through Girl Scouting.  Lack of communication is a real problem here because so many do not have internet access and, since so much of Girls Scouting is now online, I would like to see more communications through other ways. I hope that progress can be made through MCC to help GSCO realize that there are big gaps in online communications that is not the girls’ faults.  There has to be another way to deliver program.

What have you learned through being part of this committee?

The more people work together to achieve a common goal, the better the experience and the outcome.  Working together is also a great example for girls to learn.  When they see what can happen with a group working together for a common goal, they will be more likely to use that in their lives, too.  Usually, the more people that share a goal and are willing to work for it, the better the committee will be in the future and the more likely that they will share their skills in team building with their troops who, in turn, will use it as they work for a girl-led troop and the more confidence that they will have to achieve it.

Why would you recommend being a member of MCC to other volunteers?

I have noticed, when I do trainings, that most of the leaders have no idea as to how GSCO works, how decisions are made, and what it takes to make Girl Scouting possible.  MCC is a good way to “get your feet wet.”  It does a lot of it’s work by phone, isn’t so expensive that most people could handle it.  You don’t have to travel a long way several times a year. An MCC member gets to know a lot of people in her territory as she talks to them about various concerns. I like it because I get to talk face-to-face with them and can answer questions, and, most of all, establish and a network of people who want to help the troop and the girl and the adult succeed, a relationship that can lead to better understanding of how GSCO works and they have someone they have met who is an person who really cares about girls and the Girl Scout program.

Tell us about yourself.

I am 71-years-old and my husband, Wayne, and I will celebrate our 50th wedding anniversary this summer.  I was born in Texas, went to school in Texas, married in Texas, lived for 2 1/2 years in Canada teaching in a coed boarding school while my husband was in Vietnam.  We have two children, a son, Terry (he and his wife Heather live in Broomfield) and a daughter, Beth (she and her husband Todd, live in Fort Worth and they have our three grandsons, Justyn, Jaxson, and Joshua.  Beth is a Gold Award recipient and Lifetime Girl Scout  and is the principal of an elementary school. Terry will be starting a new job in June.

Wayne and I love to travel.  We have been to almost all 50 states, all but two of the Canadian provinces, Europe, Africa, Ukraine, Vietnam, Ireland, and Central America.  Both of us are now retired and we were in Vietnam, Hong Kong, Singapore, and China in January and our anniversary gift to each other will be a trip to England and Scotland in August.

My Girl Scout experience began as a Brownie in Texas when cookies were around $1 a package.  I earned my First Class Award in high school.  I have been a day camp director, took girls to Macy Conference Center in New York, attended the WAGGGS international conference the year it was held at Macy. I was an alternate to the Vermont Round-Up and, as an adult was on the program staff twice  for a Wider Opportunity with 1,200 girls in   Tennessee. One year I was the music leader and another year I was the ceremonies director.  I was elected for two terms as the president of the Board of Directors for the Columbine Girl Scout  region here in southeastern Colorado.  I am currently a trainer, program resource person, on three different Gold Award Mentors committees right now, the GSCO History Committee,  GSCO Global Girl Scouting committee, and will begin my second time to be on MCC. I am also a Lifetime member of GSUSA and I am looking forward to 2020 to celebrate 50 years as a Girl Scout.  I was on the 100th GSUSA celebration state committee in 2012. I coordinated the library display here in Pueblo and did the Flat Juliette activities for the state event.  AND…I love being a Girl Scout!

I am the youth ministry leader at our church.  One of my duties with that is Vacation Bible School.  This is my  5th year to write my own curriculum and it’s a lot of fun!  I am responsible for the children’s classes at our church and I teach two classes every week.  I am retired from Dillards.  My favorite hobbies are reading and music.  I am currently trying to declutter our house and it should be finished some time in the next century! I love romance books and historical books and my favorite book is the Bible.  I have an Associate of Arts degree from Lubbock Christian University (College back then) and a Bachelor of Science in Education from Abilene Christian University (College back then).  I also did some post -graduate work at ACC, but, I never finished it.

I may have left something out, but, this is MORE than enough!

Girl Scouts of Colorado is lucky to have a unique governance system with the Membership Connection Committee as the centerpiece of our democratic process and a way to give our members a strong voice in the issues they care most about. Would you like to be a voice for Girl Scouts of Colorado? Speak up and contribute our success together! To reach the MCC, e-mail GSCO.MCC@gscolorado.org

Creating a Family Agreement

Submitted by GSCO Volunteer Support Specialist Allison Ellington

Western Colorado

Grand Junction

We’ve all heard the quote, “It takes a village to raise a child.” As a mother and a part of the GSUSA sisterhood, I couldn’t agree more. I love the fact that our Girl Scouts are around so many positive influences. I’ve noticed the troops that seem to function the best are the ones that have many different family members involved in helping with the troop. There are so many ways to get involved, but we’ve heard troop volunteers say that it’s hard to ask for help and some don’t know what to ask for. On the flip side, we’ve heard families tell us they want to help, but leaders never ask for it or don’t have something for the adults to do when they do offer. GSCO recommends a family meeting to start the year off on the right foot. There are some great details on how to have one of these meetings, who to include, and what to cover in our newly released Volunteer Essentials. A parent/guardian/family meeting, or a meeting of your friends-and-family network (as encouraged in many of the leadership Journeys), is a chance for you to get to know the families of the girls in your group. This is also a time to get a Family Agreement in writing. Below is a great example of one you can use with your troop, but feel free to customize it to your needs. If you have any questions about the family involvement meeting or creating a group agreement, please reach out to your volunteer support specialist. Don’t know who that is? Email inquiry@gscolorado.org.

Group Agreement Example

 

Volunteer Spotlight: Victoria Gigoux, MCC member

How long have you been a Girl Scout volunteer?

Eight years

How long have you been a member of the MCC?

Three years

What inspired you to join MCC?

I was interested in staying connected and having a voice representing the Western Slope.

What have you learned through being a part of this committee?

I’ve learned that my voice does matter. I feel some of the things I have said and the subcommittees I have been a part of have helped shape the Girl Scout experience for both girls and volunteers.

Why would you recommend being a member of MCC to other GSCO volunteers?

It’s a fulfilling way to keep your finger on the pulse of where GSCO is going and have a voice that might impact that direction

Tell us about yourself. 

I am a full-time-working, mother of three girls; all Girl Scouts. I’ve been married to my husband, Gerald, since 2001.  We live in Grand Junction with our kids, dog, turtle, hamster, chickens, and turkeys and we also board two horses.  Outside of this craziness, I lead two multi-level Girl Scout troops, totaling around 50 girls each year from K-9th. I am a member of the Mesa County Service Unit leadership team and help with the President’s Council , in addition to being on the MCC and a rep to the board.  Outside of Girl Scouts, I volunteer for my sorority, Alpha Chi Omega, as Finance Advisor for our collegiate chapter at CU and as a Province Chair supporting all alumnae chapters in five states, including Colorado.  In my “free” time, I love to read, cook and travel.

Girl Scouts of Colorado is lucky to have a unique governance system with the Membership Connection Committee as the centerpiece of our democratic process and a way to give our members a strong voice in the issues they care most about. Would you like to be a voice for Girl Scouts of Colorado? Speak up and contribute our success together! To reach the MCC, e-mail GSCO.MCC@gscolorado.org

Volunteer View: August 2017

Leadership Summits set this fall

Connect with other volunteers at our upcoming Leadership Summits, and take a variety of leadership development and enrichment classes for new and experienced leaders, such as: Girl Scout History and Traditions Wide Game; Volunteer Toolkit – New Journeys and Badges; Global Girl Scouting; Clique-Proofing Your Troop, as well as essential Program level 101’s – Daisy, Brownie, Junior, and Older Girls; and GS 201 – Take it to the Next Level – Girl Led!

Classes will also be offered for older girls – Cadettes, Seniors, and Ambassadors – and leaders of older girl troops. Sessions include Gold Award, Highest Awards & Take Action, Extended Trips, Money-Earning Opportunities for Older Girls, and more. Connect with other Girl Scouts in grades 6-12 at these exciting events! Participants will enjoy a catered lunch with a chance to share ideas with fellow leaders.

Follow the registration links below to sign up for Leadership Summits now, and find out more about classes offered at each event. We can’t wait to see you there!

*(Note: this location was originally scheduled in Fort Collins but has moved to Longmont)

Fall Product Program Begins Sept. 23

The Girl Scouts Fall Product Program is a great way for troops to earn start-up money for the year. All troops receive 13% of their magazine orders as troop proceeds, plus $1/item for nuts and chocolates. Don’t forget your Troop ACH form must be filed to participate.  Fall Program materials will be shipped directly to troops and trainings for fall sale service unit managers will be in early September.

Learn more: http://www.girlscoutsofcolorado.org/en/cookies/fall-sale.html

S’mores Club is back

The S’mores Club is back for girls and troops that rock both the Fall Product and the Girl Scout Cookie programs.

If a girl sells 15 items online during the 2017 Fall Product Program and 300 packages during the 2018 Girl Scout Cookie Program she will receive an exclusive Girl Scout designed sterling silver PANDORA bracelet with uniquely created charms and a personalized S’mores Club Avatar Patch.

If a troop has $350 in online sales during the 2017 Fall Product Program, they will receive an exclusive booth selection during the 2018 Cookie Program. If they then also have a 300 package per girl selling average during the 2018 Girl Scout Cookie Program the troop fall sale manager and troop cookie manager will each receive an exclusive Girl Scout designed Sterling Silver PANDORA bracelet with uniquely created charms and a personalized S’mores Club Avatar Patch.

Get outdoors with GSCO

Outdoor Adventure Club single-event passes open 30 days prior to the event, if space is available. Register here: https://girlscoutsco.campintouch.com/ui/forms/application/camper/App

Camp registration opens this upcoming year on Jan. 18 at 9 a.m., mark your calendar now!

Reserve properties up to 365 days in advance here. If your troop has not planned that far out, watch the GSCO Facebook page for last minute cancellations. Reserve a property herehttp://girlscoutsofcolorado.checkfront.com/reserve/

Equipment: You can also reserve limited equipment for your outing from the Denver office at this link: Reserve equipment: http://girlscoutsofcolorado.checkfront.com/reserve/

Reminders:

  • Girls bridging from Juniors to Cadettes or Cadettes to Seniors this summer have until Sept. 30 to submit online notification they have earned their Bronze or Silver Award.
  • Volunteer support specialists (VSS) are calling troop leaders through Sept. 15. VSS will be welcoming troops back for a new Girl Scout year. This is a wonderful time to update any troop information, ask questions, and get a lot of valuable information.
  • The Older Girl Advisory Board is recruiting new members (girls in grades 9-12 who provide feedback on projects including mentoring, program development, older girl engagement, and product sales). Applications are due Sept. 19. Apply today.
  • Find out more about travel with Girl Scouts and the Destinations program, attend this webinar.

Join Daisy’s Circle

Join Daisy’s Circle, Girl Scouts of Colorado’s monthly giving program, and get a $5 new member coupon to use at the Girl Scouts of Colorado Shop. Shop in person in Denver, by phone, or email.

Coupons are applied to in-stock merchandise only and cannot be transferred or copied.

This offer expires 10/15/2017, so join today!

It’s so easy to join! The bigger the circle, the bigger the impact!

Upcoming Events

Girl Scout Night with the Grand Junction Rockies
5 p.m. Aug. 27.  Girl Scouts in uniform get into the game free! Adults and other children can purchase tickets at the gate. Cheer on the Rockies as they take on the Orem Owlz. To help us set aside enough seats for our Girl Scout section, please let us know if you are interested here.

CU Football Scout Day – Boulder
12 p.m. Sept. 9.  Cost is $25/person. Girl Scouts get a special game patch. Cheer on the Buffs as they take on Texas State San Marcos. A portion of each ticket sold will be donated back to GSCO. Purchase tickets here and use promo code GIRLSCOUTS17.

Girl Scout Day with Colorado Rockies
6:10 p.m. Sept. 16. Tickets range from $16-$25. Come cheer on the Colorado Rockies as they take on the San Diego Padres! Girl Scouts get a fun event patch. A portion of each ticket sold through our GSCO promo code will be donated back to GSCO. The Rockies are having a great season, so tickets may go fast. Get yours today! Purchase tickets here and look for our GSCO promo code/link at the bottom of the page.

Advice for new leaders from seasoned leaders

Submitted by Allison Ellington, GSCO Volunteer Support Specialist

Western Colorado

Grand Junction

Thoughts from some Western Slope volunteers

Why I volunteer:

• Because I was a Girl Scout and had great experiences

• To help teach girls and support their development in my community

• To make a difference and have fun

• It’s a great way to bond with my daughter and help develop confidence in young girls

• It’s important to role model volunteering and community involvement

• To keep me out of trouble, get new experiences and meet so many people

New skills developed as a Girl Scout volunteer:

• Patience, event planning, conflict resolution, getting on the girl’s level, and teaching the way they learn

• Camping and relating to girls

• Organizational skills

• The importance of delegating

• How to ask for help

• Dealing with diversity

• Learned to be a kid again

• Dealing with lots of different personalities with teenage girls. You can learn A LOT from these girls!

• Still learning

• Leadership and time management

• “I found a hidden confidence in myself that transferred to my job outside of Girl Scouts. I’m able to communicate better and multi-task better which earned me a promotion to a manager! 😊”

What advice would you give to a brand-new volunteer?

• It can be overwhelming at first. Breathe, relax, go at a pace you can handle, and use the help the staff provides. Don’t be afraid to ask questions and ask for help!

• Don’t stress about being perfect

• Go to the trainings before you start

• Get your training, ask for help, and network with other leaders

• Remember, these girls are here to have fun while learning

• Be open-minded and have fun

• Reach out to other leaders – they have been through the same things you are going through

• Ask for parent volunteers – even for the small things

• Tap into the other leaders for information

• Attend trainings and service unit meetings! Meet other leaders and network for collaboration and ideas.

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

Volunteer Spotlight: Terry Henrickson, MCC member

How long have you been a Girl Scout volunteer?

Six years

How long have you been a member of the MCC?

Three years

What inspired you to join MCC?

I joined MCC to bring the concerns of rural troops to the council and to help the council’s message reach out to our area.

What have you learned through being a part of this committee?

I learned how much our staff and board put into making Girl Scouts of Colorado work.

Why would you recommend being a member of MCC to other GSCO volunteers?

MCC helps volunteers see how diverse the needs and offerings of other areas of the state are.

Tell us about yourself.

When I was a girl, I was raised with the ideal that I could do or become anything and that there were more opportunities out there beyond what I could see. This is what I want to instill in my daughter and her friends, and through Girl Scouts I’ve found a way to help them explore their world and find their passions.

Girl Scouts of Colorado is lucky to have a unique governance system with the Membership Connection Committee as the centerpiece of our democratic process and a way to give our members a strong voice in the issues they care most about. Would you like to be a voice for Girl Scouts of Colorado? Speak up and contribute our success together! To reach the MCC, e-mail GSCO.MCC@gscolorado.org

Become a GSCO volunteer recruiter

Submitted by Sarah Scalise, GSCO Recruitment Specialist

Metro Denver

Denver

The last days of summer are bittersweet for girls and volunteers. There is so much to be done before the school year, and not enough days spent in the Colorado sunshine. However, recruitment specialists in the Denver office are racing along to help interested girls and families learn about Girl Scout opportunities in their community.

We depend on experienced Girl Scouts and volunteers to attend Back to School Nights and invite interested girls and families to information meetings.  If you’d like to represent Girl Scouts in your community please, reach out to us at inquiry@girlscoutsofcolorado.org Let us know your name, local school, and how we can best get in touch!

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

Girl Scouts wrangle audience at Buffalo Bill Days Parade in Golden

Submitted by Sarah Scalise, GSCO Recruitment Specialist

Metro Denver

Golden

Troops from Golden gathered July 29, 2017 for the Buffalo Bill Days Parade, an tradition for more than 50 years! “100 Years of Golden,” the Girl Scouts of Colorado Centennial, and the 100 year anniversary of the Girl Scout Cookie Sale Program made for 300 years of celebration! We chose to mark the occasion by wearing historical and modern Girl Scout uniforms to show where we’ve been and where we are going. In addition to having a fun time, our group received a shout-out from the emcee for “most well-written description of your parade entry!” Thank you to our awesome Girl Scouts, volunteers, and behind-the-scenes support for putting together this opportunity.

If you and your Girl Scout troop want to wear historical uniforms in a parade, it’s not too late! We are looking for girls and adults to march in the Strasburg Hometown Days Parade on August 12 at 8:30 a.m. Girl Scouts will commemorate the joining of the first continuous railroad in the United States. Please sign up no later than Monday August 6 at noon. http://www.signupgenius.com/go/30e0d45aaac22abfe3-strasburg

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

Leadership Summit in Northern & Northeastern CO moved

The Girl Scouts of Colorado Leadership Summit in our Northern & Northeastern CO region on September 23, 2017 in Fort Collins has been moved to Longmont. It is now at Front Range Community College – Boulder County Campus (2190 Miller Dr, Longmont, CO 80501). To learn more or register, use this link: http://www.girlscoutsofcolorado.org/en/events-repository/2017/northern_colorado_le.html

We appreciate your patience and understanding!