Category Archives: Volunteer News

Seeking Girl Scout troops to help with book drive


Submitted by Amanda Kalina, HOPE Online Learning Academy Co-Op

It is time to announce the 2015 HOPE Online Learning Academy Co-Op Book Drive!

Every year we receive many requests from our Learning Centers for library books that are needed for group reading. And we’d love to get friends of HOPE involved in helping us meet this need. (In fact, we appreciate all the Girl Scout troops who have helped out with previous projects over the last year….you’ve been wonderful!!!)

If you have gently used, K-12 appropriate books, please bring them to the HOPE Online office (373 Inverness Parkway, Suite 205, Englewood) to be donated. If you know of anyone who is looking for a special project, perhaps a Girl Scout troop that needs a philanthropy or a Barnes and Nobl​e​ store that is throwing out books, we would like to be the beneficiary.

The purpose of this book drive is to place books into libraries of our Learning Centers. We encourage you to forward this information to anyone you think may be interested in helping. Thanks in advance for your donation and for helping to support HOPE students! This book drive runs through the end of March.

HOPE Online Learning Academy Co-Op is a blended online public k-12 charter school which delivers its curriculum through community-based Learning Centers from Denver to Greeley, Leadville, Colorado Springs and Pueblo. Students attend Learning Centers five days a week and rotate between online lessons and face-to-face classroom instruction. The award-winning curriculum exceeds state standards. HOPE also offers low student-educator ratios and is an accredited high school diploma program, with graduates going on to attend college at institutions from the University of Denver to the University of Northern Colorado and beyond. We serve an at-risk student population, with 8 percent of our students considered homeless and 87 percent on free and reduced lunch. Additionally, HOPE provides character development programs, including physical education, music, the arts and extra-curricular activities such as competitive sports, specialty clubs, talent shows and more. To learn more about HOPE, visit

Below is a list of books we are looking for specifically, however we will take nearly anything we are given!

(Any books in these series would be helpful, but we will take anything else!)
Diary of a Wimpy Kid
Magic Tree House
Junie B Jones
Dork Diaries
Big Hero 6
Flat Stanley
Cam Jansen
The Notebook of Doom
Dragon Masters
Amelia Bedelia
Frog and Toad
Eerie Elementary
According to Humphrey
Dory Fantasmagory
Choose Your Adventure Dragonlarks
Kylie Jean
Pinky and Rex
Here’s Hank
Geronimo Stilton

Keena Ford and the Second Grade Mix-Up
Easy Reader Books– Level 1, 2, 3 (sometimes called ” I Can Read”)
Step Into Reading Books
National Geographic leveled books
Nonfiction– books and materials
Any picture books

Melanie Stone
HOPE Online Learning Academy Co-Op
Director of Activities and Athletics
373 Inverness Parkway, Suite 205
Englewood, CO 80112
Office: 720-402-3016
Cell: 303-727-0315
Front Desk: 720-402-3000
Fax: 303-484-7639

Book Drive 2015

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

Calling all future leaders, advocates, & philanthropists: apply for the Girls’ Leadership Council


Submitted by The Women’s Foundation of Colorado

The Women’s Foundation of Colorado is now accepting applications for the 2015 Girls’ Leadership Council, a leadership and training program for girls entering their junior years in high school.

This one-week summer program on the University of Denver campus helps high school sophomore girls discover their own power and potential to assist and impact their communities.

The 2015 Girl’s Leadership Council will offer you the opportunity to:

  • Meet with Colorado business leaders and philanthropists and hear from expert guest speakers on issues impacting Colorado women and girls.
  • Discover the importance and impact of philanthropy by and for women and girls.
  • Build a network to lean on during your high school and collegiate years and beyond.
  • Live with and learn from a group of diverse girls who share your passion for improving their communities.

To learn more about the GLC and the application process, watch this video. The Women’s Foundation of Colorado encourages applications from girls with diverse backgrounds. Although academic performance is a consideration in the selection process, we are looking for girls who demonstrate passion, commitment and leadership in many ways. Thanks to the generosity of our donors, there are no fees for this program.


Any high school sophomore girl in Colorado who will be a junior in fall 2015

Program dates:

July 26-Aug. 1, 2015

Program Location:

University of Denver Campus

Application Deadline:

March 6, 2015, 5 p.m.

Finalist Interviews:        

May 16, 2015

If you have questions, please visit the WFCO web site or contact Community Initiatives and Investments Manager, Alison Friedman at 303-285-2972 or

Outdoor Volunteers Needed – troop camps, dads &more!

Every year, especially during the summer, there are many ways to get involved with Outdoor Programs. The statewide Outdoor Programs Team includes:

Betsy Till, Outdoor Programs Director
Haley Peel, Assistant Outdoor Programs Director (in charge of all volunteer-led outdoor programming!)
Monica Gray, Tomahawk Ranch Camp Director
Kim Petau, Sky High Ranch Camp Director.
We can’t do it without the help of volunteers like you! Here is a list of volunteer opportunities this summer (review them with your troop!)

Troop Camp Host Director:

  • Works with Haley Peel and the Troop Camp location on program, and logistics.
  • Once at the Troop Camp, works on-site with staff to make sure things are printed if needed (each Troop Camp location will have a digital download of health info, waivers, etc.).
  • This person may have meetings with Haley Peel and/or the Troop Camp location prior to the camp to make sure it is “Girl Scout-y”
  • This person receives free admission to camp along with their child
  • Haley Peel approves these Troop Camp Host Directors, and help get them registered for camp prior to January 13 with the appropriate discount. Deadline to apply for this is December 15.
  • Interested? Contact:
  • The Needs for Troop Camp Host Directors:
    • Camp Jackson Troop Camp 8/9-11; needs host director in Rye

Troop Camp Host Troop:

  • Help do things like: create caper charts, welcome girls/leaders to camp, help with cabin assignments, lead Girl Scout songs/games.
  • They work with the Troop Camp Host Director and camp staff at the Troop Camp Location to make sure the schedule works, and there are girl-led opportunities at the Troop Camp.
  • They support the Troop Camp Host Director, help the girls lead their peers, and help coach first time campers/troops.
  • They receive a 20% discount to the Troop Camp for up to 6 girls on top of the camp fees, and must be Juniors or above.
  • Girls can also use cookie credits, and cookie volume discounts (5% if you sell 500 boxes, 10% if you sell 100 boxes, etc.) towards camp fees.
  • Haley Peel will gather and collect host troop payment info to enroll them in camp in CampInTouch prior to opening camp registration on January 13. Deadline to apply for this is December 15.
  • Interested? Contact:
  • The Needs for Host Troops:
    • MMR June Troop Camp 6/12-14; in Allenspark
    • MMR July Troop Camp 7/10-12; in Allenspark
    • Gypsum Troop Camp 7/19-21; in Gypsum
    • MMR August Troop Camp 8/7-9; in Allenspark
    • Camp Jackson Troop Camp 8/9-11; in Rye

Day Camp Adult Volunteers

  • Adult volunteers are needed to help with Day Camps
  • They are approved by the individual day camp directors, and registered through CampInTouch by Haley Peel
  • They register their daughter for camp and pay their 10% deposit, then once the Day Camp Director gives their info to Haley she will give the 90% discount to their girl on the back end and also will enroll the adult
  • Interested, Contact the Day Camp Director to apply
  • The Needs For Day Camp Adult Volunteers:
    • Be Wild! 6/8-12; 10 adults in Aurora;
    • A Journey Through Time 6/15-19; 6 adults in Colorado Springs;
    • Franktown Day Camp 6/15-19; 10 adults in Franktown;
    • Boating Specialty Day Camps 6/22-26; 11 adults in Morrison, various boating specialties, may need additional training;
    • H2O Sampler 7/20-24; 10  adults in Morrison, various specialties, may need additional training to volunteer;
    • Horseback Riding Day Camp 8/10-14; needs 14 adults and 2 lifeguards in Morrison;
    • NEW: Fort Collins Girl Scout Day Camp! This camp is re-starting with new leadership and will operate in 2015 at Swift Ponds. Contact Dorsi, to learn about adult volunteer opportunities!

NEW: Outdoor Instructors: archery instructors, fishing instructors, and boating instructors are wanted for single and/or multiple day events. Contact know if you are interested.

Outdoor Program Volunteer Directors

Camp Dad (or Mom!)

  • This is for dads (and moms) that may feel out of the loop when volunteering at other Girl Scout activities, but love the outdoors and want to share their experience with troops!
  • Camp Dads (and moms) are needed in every troop and service unit to help with camping experiences for the girls.
  • Recommended trainings: Overnight, and Cooking and Camping Trainings. Find them on the Activity Finder!
  • Interested? Contact your local troop or service unit!

Camp Buddy Troops

  • For troops who love camping, and want to share it by being buddies to other troops who may have less experience. Talk about a great opportunity for girl-led outdoor experiences!
  • This can also be for troops looking to share a property or lodge (like Hamp Hut, Twisted Pine, or Pawnee Lodge) with other troops!
  • Interested or want a buddy troop for your first camp experience? Contact:

Resident Camps Volunteers

  • Four adult volunteers needed at Tomahawk Ranch
  • Two adult volunteers needed per week (about 12 total) needed at Sky High Ranch
  • Spaces for these volunteers are limited because campers fill our bed spaces and there are limited spaces for these additional adults to sleep (we love them though!); they receive 50% off their daughter’s resident camp registration.
  • They are never placed in the same unit as their daughter, so that the adult and the daughter get their own experience at camp.
  • Camp directors work to get them registered prior to the opening of camp registration on Jan. 13 as well. Deadline to apply for this is January 7.
  • Questions? Contact: for Tomahawk Ranch, or for Sky High Ranch. Resident Camp Adult volunteers complete the camp staff application found here after December 5. They also go through additional levels of background check according to our State Childcare Licensing Standards.


Creating a kick off with families: a short & sweet guide


Submitted by Cortney Kern

With the new Girl Scout year approaching, it is a great time to take a look at the year ahead and think about how to engage girls and their families. You will have lots of fun with these customizable journey themes. Engaging families of troop members helps keep the troop strong and offers opportunities for girls to learn from other people. Excerpts for this article are from the It’s Your Journey Customize It handbook.

We know troops play an important pathway for our Daisies and their families. A great kick off for Daisies would be to make registration or “getting started” gatherings into a real event by adding fun activities and showcasing ways for families to get involved. Here are some ideas about using journeys to build excitement, interest- and membership! At your kick-off event:

  • Start a song (“I’m a Girl Scout daisy…”)
  • Pull out one or two short excerpts from the stories in the Daisy journey books. Invite teen Girl Scouts, fun-loving parents, or any story lover to read or act out the scenes.
  • Add to the fun: Take photos of girls and their families with their favorite flower friends. Maybe ask a few questions as gentle conversation starters: Why does your family love the value that flower represents? Where are each of the flower friends from? Where’s your family from?
  • Tell girls and their families how things they’ll do as Daisies relate to the story in their journey books. Here’s a sample message you can use: The flower friends are taking off in their petal-powered car in Between earth and Sky! In the same way, the Daisies are taking off on an adventure that will give them a head start on science as they explore nature. Along the way, they’ll also learn how to get along with others!

Working with Brownies? With the help of Brownie Elf, explore the Wonders of Water (WOW!). In real life, the Brownies are going to become experts on the science of water and the importance of protecting it. Plus, they are going to learn some “Ways of Working” that will really WOW you! At your kick-off event:

  • Get your camera out! Can someone dress up as Brownie Elf and pose for pictures? How about Grandma Elf?
  • Create “blow up” posters of a snapshot of what girls will be doing this year. Family members can easily check out what their girls will be doing. Maybe parents, cousins, aunts and uncles will see a session where they could help out!
  • Use the information and special handouts in the adult guides to keep families connected to action throughout the journey. More involve families mean more support for volunteers and increased awareness about how Girl Scouting benefits girls!
  • Create a concluding ceremony that lets families know how important it is that girls have started earning Girl Scouting’s leadership awards. Encourage everyone to sign up for the next level of Girl Scouting!

Get your Juniors and Cadettes jumps started by bringing girls together for fun opportunities to dig into journey themes and even to earn some of the journey leadership awards or participation mementos. As you consider these examples, you are likely to think of many more ways to tie award earning into your journey kick-offs.

  • Camp-Out, Lock-In, Sleepover: Engage Girl Scout Juniors in a “Survivor-like” adventure related to Get Moving! as they see how little energy they can use during the course of a weekend or an overnight. Add some of the “energizing” snacks and crafts featured in the girls’ journey books. Top it all off with a chance to talk to an expert guest about interesting ways to save energy. There you have it: The Junior Energize Award!
  • Wide Games: Wide games are a wonderful Girl Scout tradition that encourages girls to explore several different activities. Here’s an example of using the approach to run an event for Cadettes that culminates in them earning their “Interact” leadership award from the aMAZE! Journey:
    • Check out the Interact Challenges chart on pages 12-15 of the girl’s aMAZE! Note that the chart lists specific relationship challenges, the pages in the book that deal with the skill required for that challenge, and a blank space for girls to write down what they did.
    • Girls are asked to do three out of the nine challenges to earn their awards. Set up activity stations for the challenges you think will be most interesting and viable for a “wide game” event plan.
    • As the event wraps up, it’s always great for girls to show what they have learned and why it matters to them by talking about it, writing in a journal, drawing on a mural, and so on. (Reflection also helps with “Learning by Doing”!) So borrow a tip from the journey approach and incorporate a fun sharing opportunity into a closing award ceremony!

We know that girls have more to do as they grow up so try this approach for busy fifth or sixth graders and their families:

  • Identify parents, friends, or relatives who are willing to volunteer for eight weeks. (You can also split that in half, with one pair of volunteers guiding the first four weeks, and a second pair guiding the next for four weeks.)
  • Let families know that the girls can enjoy an eight-to-ten week leadership journey. They’ll have a ton of fun learning and get a lot of Girl Scout essential experience and values condensed into a two-month participation option!
  • Choose whichever Junior or Cadette journey them is of greater interest to girls.
  • By following the adult guide, the journey volunteers can coach girls to earn important Girl Scout Leadership badges and have fun with classic Girl Scout traditions along the way, too. Would families like to add on a trip? A craft project? There are ideas for those sewn into the journey guide, too.

What other great ways are you planning on using the journeys to engage families for the membership year? We would love to hear from you. Be sure to share your stories with us.

Girl Scouts work to increase Meadow Mountain Ranch’s legacy

9253373675_620b42ae25_oSubmitted by Penny Roberts

It started with MMR enthusiasts trying to support their beloved Meadow Mountain Ranch. Three former camp counselors from MMR from long years passed have embarked on an ambitious project to collect and compile a comprehensive a history of MMR, and we invite you to help us. Using this blog medium we can expand our search to as many former staff members, CITs, campers, parents, leaders, and friends as possible. This project is being conducted with the support and encouragement of the GSCO History Collection volunteers out of the Loveland History Center.

Penny Boustead (“Pippin’”), Linda Ray (“Echo”) and Penny Roberts (“Pan”) are the ring-leaders of this daunting task. E-mail addresses follow: Penny Boustead; Linda Ray; Penny Roberts

The project keeps growing, including current names and contact information, dates of contact with MMR, positions of former staff, dates and information about building projects – – – even including “camp kids” (children of staff members) and “camp pets.” Information is being gleaned from staff books, e-mail listings, MMR alumnae data bases, personal contacts, and FaceBook contacts. Pan recently made a trip to the History Center in Loveland to scan the ephemera collected there about MMR and the original purchase data, a few gems of information about previous development plans and projects, and lots of additional names and dates of what happened when. Much more in-depth research will be required to get through all the documents, files and books about the property and its history.

If you would like to join us, please send whatever information you wish to provide. You can send written information, to any one of us via e-mail. You can scan and send documents to any of us. If you are ready to actually pass on your own personal collection of photos, slides, t-shirts, books, memorabilia, documents, plaques, awards – – – anything at all pertaining to MMR – – – please mail them to Penny Roberts at PO Box 211, Estes Park, Co. 80517. We will see they are directed to the right place. Please help us out by including approximate dates of their use/issue, as well as other details that you might like to share. The who, what, when, where and how are always important in history pursuits.

Please pass the word. Find us everyone and everything of note about MMR. Fifty three years is a lot of history, but our connections and involvements reach all over the country, and indeed, all around the world. Let us sort it all out – – – no detail is too small, and don’t assume that we already have that information, because it’s possible that we don’t.

A display cabinet will be installed and filled with memorabilia and information about MMR in the Homestead House during the Women’s Week at MMR on Saturday, August 2nd this summer. The displays can be added to and changed as time goes along, and this cabinet and display are being provided by History Group and Promise Partners members to help out this History Project. Also, the time capsule at MMR, originally installed in 1987 and opened in 2012 will be re-filled and sealed for the next 25 years on August 2.

We will keep you updated. It’s an exciting time to be involved in a new history project, and MMR holds such a precious place in many of our hearts that it is a joy to work on it.

Outdoor Property Q&A Session Scheduled for Northern CO

We have been receiving a lot of feedback about our Northern/NE Colorado outdoor properties since the Town Hall meeting there last month. In addition, there were a few pieces of information that our team committed to get back to the attendees of that meeting. Also, I understand that there were some questions about some data presented. I wanted to use this opportunity to communicate that one of the great things about having these meetings is that we have an opportunity to get volunteer feedback before decisions are made. One of the challenging things, however, is that we are giving you information real-time, and that data may not always be final. Since that meeting, we have audited all of the financial and usage data and have updated our presentation. I apologize for any confusion about that, and appreciate your understanding.

Rather than simply sending/posting this presentation and the answers to your additional questions electronically, I would like the opportunity to follow-up with any interested members in person. I will be hosting a follow-up Q & A session this Saturday in Loveland, after the Volunteer Appreciation Brunch. The session will be 1-3 pm at the First United Methodist Church, 533 N. Grant, Loveland. Thanks so much for your interest in this process, we hope to see you Saturday!

Sky High season extended — book it today!


By popular demand, the Sky High Ranch fall season has been extended from September 15 to November 22, so book your fall stay today! Since Girl Scouts of Colorado devoted Sky High Ranch to volunteer-led individual troop camp and other group rentals, the popularity of this beautiful property near Woodland Park has soared.

More than 1,200 Girl Scouts made memories to last a lifetime at Sky High over the last year. We would love to have even more campers enjoy the property this year, so we’ve extended the season for guests to enjoy Sky High. It’s a wonderful place to hold camping programs for troops, service units or open to all girls. Plan a program to work on a Journey, earn badges or just have fun in the outdoors. If you want to plan an open Girl Scout camp, GSCO can even provide the resources to help you make it happen. To learn more, see pictures, and make your reservation, visit

If you have a youth, church, business or family group or event, we’d love to have you hold it at Sky High as well. Contact Cindy Saylor at 720-530-5059 or for pricing and information.

Get Ready for Summer Checklist for Troops

It’s already that time of year when troops are planning end-of-year parties and bridging ceremonies!  Here are a few things you’ll need to do over the next few months to wrap up the 2013-2014 Girl Scout membership year. As soon as you complete your last activity for the year, follow these steps:

  • Annual Troop Report – Submit this form online within 30 days of your group’s last activity for the year. If you gather this information, you should be able to complete the report in 10 minutes! You’ll receive an email with a copy of your report and links to the other checklist items below.
  • ACH Authorization – When you submit your Annual Troop Report, the website will direct you to the ACH Authorization for next year’s Fall Product Sale and Cookie Program (the link will also be in your confirmation email). If you know your group is continuing, go ahead and submit this quick form!
  • Re-register for 2014-2015 – Starting May 1st, you can log in to your online Troop Management Tool to re-register all the girls and adult who plan to continue for the 2014-2015 membership year!
  • GS Voices Survey – Encourage the girls, parents, and volunteers in your troop to register to participate in the Girl Scout Voices survey. Registering ensures the Girl Scout Research Institute sends an age-appropriate survey that provides a chance to share thoughts and feelings about the Girl Scout Leadership Experience.

Please complete the Get Ready for Summer Checklist by August 1st!  If you have any questions about completing this checklist, contact your Program Support Specialist – or you can contact the GSCO Customer Support team at or (877) 404-5708.  Have a great summer!

Additional PA Training spaces for girls at PA Train the Trainer in Denver 3/16

We are excited that at least 12 Program Aide Trainers will attend the PA Train the Trainer event in Denver on March 16! If you are interested in signing up for the training, please contact

We have a few girl spaces left for girls without a trainer. The cost is $20 and the girl needs to have completed her Leader In Action (LiA) award prior to the training (for more information about this, please consult the Brownie Girls Guide to Girl Scouting). Training is March 16 from 9am to 6pm, and girls need to bring a lunch.

To sign up your girl for this training, log into CampInTouch here:

Council sponsored PA Trainings are no longer offered, with the exception of a PA Super Training that may take place in December of 2014. If you are wanting to get trained, join us so you can teach PA Training to girls in your troop and beyond!

To find out about more PA Trainings in your region, please contact:

Metro Denver – Toni Bullock
Northern & Northeastern Colorado – Laura DuFresne
Pike’s Peak – Sloan Gonzales
Pueblo & Southeastern Colorado – Lisa Sanchez
Mountain Communities – Cricket Hawkins
Western Slope – Virginia Brown
Southwestern Colorado – Allison Ellington

Program Aide Train the Trainer

Do you have a girl looking to earn her Program Aide Award? Program Aide (PA) is a Cadette Level award that girls can earn any time in their Cadette years! After they have completed, they have options within their service unit and region to volunteer as a Program Aide, and when they are entering 9th grade, they can be a Program Aide at GSCO Resident Camp!

We are training a group of adults who want to become Program Aide Trainers. If you are interested in registering  yourself to become a trainer (you can also register one girl), go to this link in CampInTouch to register now. Each Trainer in Training can bring one girl for $10 to the training to become trained as a PA.

Get Trained to become a PA Trainer!

Date: Sunday, March 16
Time: 9am to 6pm
Bring: Sack Lunch, water bottle, pen, folder to hold your handouts
Location: Denver Service Center, 400 South Broadway, Denver CO 80209 (garden level)

NEW to CampInTouch, our camp reservation software, click here.

RETURNING Users to CampInTouch (at camp last year or registered your daughter for camp this year) click here.

NOTE: Adults must add themselves as a 12+ aged child onto their CampInTouch family account in order to register.

Girl Scouts of Colorado is working to recruit and train Program Aide trainers (we need YOU!). For more information on PA Train the Trainer, or on PA Trainings in  your area, please contact your regional PA representative:

Metro Denver – Toni BullockNorthern & Northeastern Colorado – Laura DuFresne
Pike’s Peak – Sloan Gonzales
Pueblo & Southeastern Colorado – Lisa Sanchez
Mountain Communities – Cricket Hawkins
Western Slope – Virginia Brown
Southwestern Colorado – Allison Ellington