Tag Archives: alumnae news

Hello from the Girl Scouts of Colorado History Center in Loveland

Submitted by Girl Scouts of Colorado History Center

Northern & Northeastern CO

Loveland

This is the first in a series of blogs exploring the Girl Scouts of Colorado History Center, our Girl Scout history – nationally and internationally-, cookies, traditions, camping, games, and more.

The GSCO History Center is a museum that can be visited by girls, adults, alums, and others interested in Girl Scout history. It has a vast collection of vintage uniforms, accessories, badges, handbooks, dolls, cookie incentives, jewelry, camping equipment, flags, SWAPS, mugs, and more. It is full of artifacts from Girl Scouts of Colorado, Girl Scouts of the USA, and WAGGGS. As the statewide collection center for the council, it houses collections from the legacy councils of Columbine, Chipeta, Mile-Hi, Mountain Prairie, and Wagon Wheel.

Currently, because of state ordered COVID-19 restrictions, we cannot offer in-person visits, but we can put together resources for troops to work remotely on earning their Playing the Past badge and Girl Scout Way badge. Your troop or service unit can check out parade or fashion show tubs from the GSCO History Center too. Out-based programs include Books in a Bag. These bags are specific to grade level or topic and include vintage books and a program for their use. Contact us for more information. Once back to those cherished normal “non-COVID” days, we will welcome, by appointment, visits and tours, including trying on vintage uniforms (our oldest one dates back to 1919!) and a scavenger hunt to find items in the unique areas of the center.

If you have items to donate, contact a volunteer at the History Center. Once received, the experienced history committee will document the item’s age (year(s) of availability), Girl Scout catalog number, and price in  one of the many Girl Scout catalogs that go back to 1917! Then, it is photographed, a description is added.

The volunteer History Committee also creates displays about Juliette Gordon Low, WAGGGS, Girl Scout Cookies, camping, and more for Girl Scout Week, World Thinking Day, Founders Day, or other special events. They often have historical items on display in libraries and at Girls Scout properties around the state.

Our committee works hard to preserve and protect our Girl Scout history.  We look forward to 2021, to gathering again in person, and sharing our passion for Girl Scout history with you and your girls.  If you have Girl Scout stories and memories, please share on the GSCO Blog as well.

Email the GSCO History Center at gscohistory@gmail.com.

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 was at the can send in her story here.

Listen Now – Meet an Expert: Authors of “When Women Vote”

 

Girl Scouts of Colorado thanks Stephanie Donner and Amber McReynolds, the authors of “When Women Vote,” for participating in our “Meet an Expert” webinar series on October 28, 2020. Girl Scouts of all ages from across Colorado participated and learned about the book writing process, importance of women’s voting rights, and so much more! You can now watch and listen to this webinar here: https://youtu.be/ietV3_lRLkk

After introductions, Amber and Stephanie answered questions that girls submitted through registration and live in the chat box. We learned about their Girl Scout experience, inspiration for writing the book, and what is next for both of them.

Girl Scouts who participated in the live session or listen to the recording can purchase their “Meet an Expert” patch online: https://www.girlscoutsofcolorado.org/en/about-girl-scouts/gsco-shop.html

Questions? Email aimee.artzer@gscolorado.org.

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.

Save the Date for Women’s Week 2021 and 60th Anniversary Reunion

 

Submitted by Penny Roberts

Meadow Mountain Ranch

Northern & Northeastern CO

In the true spirit of optimism, the energetic organizing committee is hard at work preparing for Meadow Mountain Ranch’s Women’s Week and 60th Anniversary Reunion combined event for July 22 – 26, 2021.

Women’s Week runs for four nights with the all-day reunion activities on Saturday.  An over-the-top banquet will be held on Saturday evening, along with an awards ceremony, campfire and other activities. Women’s Week allows ladies ages 18 and up to come to camp and play, make friends, sing and sing and sing together, hike, make crafts, cook outside, and generally, enjoy the ambiance and company of old and new friends.

The Reunion event will feature camp tours, crafts, “trading post” items for purchase, immersion in the history of MMR for the past 60 years, and of course, singing and singing and singing.

Full-time or part-time registrations are offered, and an online registration form will be available shortly.  Contact director, Penny Roberts, at (970) 586-1775 or at probertscolo@gmail.com for questions or more general information.

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.

Listen now: Meet an Expert – Former Lieutenant Governor and Girl Scout Alum, Donna Lynne

Girl Scouts of Colorado thanks former Colorado Lieutenant Governor Donna Lynne, DrPH, for co-hosting our “Meet an Expert” webinar. More than 40 Girl Scouts from across Colorado participated in this webinar on October 8, 2020. Missed it? Listen to the recording here.

Donna Lynne served as the 49th Lieutenant Governor of Colorado from 2016 to 2019. She also served in a dual capacity as the Chief Operating Officer of the State of Colorado. Prior to her appointment, she was an executive with Kaiser Permanente. Today, Donna is the Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of Columbia University Irving Medical Center and the CEO of Columbia Doctors in New York, NY. She is recognized as one of the top women business leaders in Denver and one of the top 25 Women in Healthcare in the nation.

Donna spoke to girls about her education, career, and passions. We learned that Donna is an avid skier and hiker, and also has a passion for field hockey. Following the former Lt. Governor’s presentation, Girl Scouts had the opportunity to participate in a live Q&A session. We also learned about the American Mountaineering Center, Expedition Health, Spark the Change Colorado (formerly Metro Volunteers), and Electing Women – all groups and organizations that Donna has worked with throughout her career.

Participating in this webinar fulfills Step Two of the NEW democracy badges for all levels, find out about state government (https://www.girlscoutshop.com/BADGES-PROGRAM/NEW-FEATURED-ITEMS4/new-civics-badges).

Girl Scouts who participated in the live session or listen to the recording can purchase their “Meet an Expert” patch online: https://www.girlscoutsofcolorado.org/en/about-girl-scouts/gsco-shop.html

Questions? Email aimee.artzer@gscolorado.org.

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.

Listen now: Meet an Expert – The Energetic Side of Engineering

Girl Scouts of Colorado thanks Jill Tietjen for co-hosting our “Meet an Expert – The Energetic Side of Engineering” webinar. More than 20 Girl Scouts from across Colorado participated in this webinar on September 16, 2020. Missed it? Listen to the recording here.

Jill is an engineer, advocate, historian, lifetime Girl Scout, and champion of all women. As a professional engineer, Jill spent more than 40 years in the electric utility industry and was the national president of the Society of Women Engineers and the first woman to serve on the board of directors of the Rocky Mountain Electrical League and its first female president. Jill was on the board of Girl Scouts – Mile Hi Council from 1999 – 2007 and was board chair from 2003 – 2007. She is also an inductee of the Colorado Women’s Hall of Fame and the Colorado Author’s Hall of Fame, and a Girl Scouts of Colorado Woman of Distinction. Today, Jill is an advocate for women and girls in STEM fields and the president and CEO of Technically Speaking, Inc.

During this webinar, Jill spoke to girls about her education, career, and what life is like working as a woman in STEM. She also walked girls through a lesson on energy consumption and how the electric utility industry functions. After her presentation, girls had an opportunity to participate in a live Q&A.

Girl Scouts who participated in the live session or listen to the recording can purchase their “Meet an Expert” patch online: https://www.girlscoutsofcolorado.org/en/about-girl-scouts/gsco-shop.html

Questions? aimee.artzer@gscolorado.org.

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.

Calling All Girl Scout Alums

Submitted by Penny Roberts

Northern & Northeastern CO

Estes Park

Calling all Girl Scout alums! It’s gorgeous in the fall in Colorado, and this is a great time to “pick up our toys” and get back to more direct involvement with a variety of activities, groups, and events available to all adults age 18 and older.

The following is a list of many different ways you and your family can express your support of Girl Scouts of Colorado in general and your own personal interests in particular. If you have seen or heard of these items before, let this serve as a reminder. They are listed in no particular order of importance. Please contact me for further information on any of the following listings.

Girl Scout License Plates

In 2012, GSCO had a taskforce that created a Girl Scout license plate in time for the 100th birthday of Girl Scouts of the USA (GSUSA). The procedure took almost three years to complete, involving obtaining more than 3,000 signatures, getting the legislation drafted and through the Colorado government processes, and then watching the production of the first run of plates at the Colorado Territorial Correctional Facility in Canon City. These license plates are available for most any vehicle and provide ongoing awareness of how long-lasting and visible Girl Scouts are in our communities. The cost is an extra one-time fee of $50, and plates can be purchased at any county clerk’s office in the state.

Songbirds Girl Scout Choir

Beginning at the 90th Anniversary Roundup event in 2002, the Songbirds Girl Scout Choir was created to keep traditions alive through learning, singing, and performing a huge variety of both Girl Scout songs from back to the beginning to campfire songs, clapping games, folk music, graces, international songs, etc.  While the choir is currently (sadly) on hiatus because of the pandemic restrictions, we usually meet on the second Saturday of every month at Berthoud Elementary School. The choir is open to adults, children, troops, families, and friends of all kinds. There is no registration required and no cost involved. It’s great when alums can bring daughters, granddaughters, and others to help keep everyone “Happy All the Time!”

Meadow Mountain Ranch Fund Drive

Meadow Mountain Ranch (MMR) is held very closely to our hearts and our precious mountain property near Allenspark always needs financial support to continue to provide troops, families, and other groups the opportunity to come explore the high country in all seasons of the year. Contributions can be made directly to GSCO earmarked specifically for Meadow Mountain Ranch, or watch in the mail and through other media outlets for a newsletter three or four times per year.  This newsletter gives updates, inspirational stories by alums from the past 60 years, and sometimes photos, poetry, or a “wish list” of ongoing projects or “pie-in-the sky” suggestions for present or future improvements.

Women’s Week and 60th Anniversary Reunion

2021 will be celebration time for 60 years of operation at Meadow Mountain Ranch (MMR). The Women’s Week event will sponsor the reunion, and the dates are ready to be marked solidly in your 2021 calendars.  July 22 – 26 will allow us four nights to come and stay and play, with an open house/reunion function, fantastic banquet and campfire celebrations on Saturday, July 24. Watch for separate materials coming out soon, including costs and registration forms and program information. We’re hoping for a HUGE turnout!

Green Hat Society

This is a group of Girl Scout alums who have chapters around the country. The local chapter in Northeastern Colorado is the Plains to Peaks (P2P) Chapter.  Green Hat Society members enjoy fellowship with local chapter members as well as trips and meetings with members from around the country.  Service and girl program are important parts of the Green Hat Society.

Promise Partners

This is another local Girl Scout alum group made up of women in Northeastern Colorado. It began in the 1990s as a group of alums from Legacy Girl Scouts – Mountain Prairie Council who wanted a way to continue to be active Girl Scout volunteers. The group traditionally meets four times a year for fellowship and service. We hope to continue meeting in person in the near future. Two significant groups came from Promise Partners. One is the Songbirds Choir and the other is the council History Group. Promise Partners also sponsored two trips to Our Cabana in Mexico to participate in programs around the Monarch Butterfly migration and in service to help in the rescue and preservation of Sea Turtles.

History Group

This group of history buffs consists of eight volunteers who meet weekly at the GSCO History Center in Loveland. They organize and catalog many Girl Scout items including uniforms, books, collectibles, ephemera, and international items. They also have several programs available for troop visits. (These are now on hold until further notice.) The History volunteers enjoy setting up displays for local area events, libraries, etc. and are able to attend local events to share Girl Scout history with troops. There are also uniforms and books available to check out. Groups interested in uniforms to wear in parades or to hold a fashion show can email the committee. They welcome donations of any and all Girl Scout-related items and currently have items from more than 300 donors.

Thanks for checking in with us on all these activities. In reality, there are plenty for Girl Scout alums of all ages and locations to help us further involvement and commitment to everyone within the Girl Scouts of Colorado family. We’ll get you on any or all of these membership lists as you contact us.

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.

Meet an Expert: The Energetic Side of Engineering

 

 

 

Girl Scouts of all ages are invited to meet engineer, advocate, historian, lifetime Girl Scout, and champion of all women, Jill Tietjen, on Wednesday, September 16, 2020 from 4 – 5 p.m.

Register now: https://gscolorado.formstack.com/forms/meet_an_expert_the_energetic_side_of_engineering_webinar_09_16_2020

Registration closes September 15.

As a professional engineer, Jill spent more than 40 years in the electric utility industry and was the national president of the Society of Women Engineers and the first woman to serve on the board of directors of the Rocky Mountain Electrical League and its first female president. Jill was on the board of Girl Scouts – Mile Hi Council from 1999 – 2007 and was board chair from 2003 – 2007. She is also an inductee of the Colorado Women’s Hall of Fame and the Colorado Author’s Hall of Fame, and a Girl Scout Woman of Distinction. Today, Jill is an advocate for women and girls in STEM fields and the president and CEO of Technically Speaking, Inc.

During this webinar Jill will speak to girls about her education, career, and what life is like working as a woman in STEM. She will also walk girls through a lesson on energy consumption and how the electric utility industry functions. After her presentation, girls will have an opportunity to participate in a live Q&A.

This is an amazing opportunity for girls of all ages to learn about energy from one of Colorado’s top women in STEM.

We will use Zoom to host this webinar. All information on how to join online or via phone will be emailed out to registrants the day before the webinar. Each individual participant should be registered so we can track participation. Please do not share the information on how to join with others who have not registered. The webinar will be recorded and posted to GSCO’s YouTube channel for girls to access in the future.

Participating in this webinar will fulfill partial requirements for the new STEM Career Exploration badges for Brownies, Juniors, and Cadettes.

Questions? Email aimee.artzer@gscolorado.org.

If you are having trouble completing registration, please email inquiry@gscolorado.org or 877-404-5708.

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.

Meet an Expert Special Edition: Girl Scout Alum and Former Lieutenant Governor Donna Lynne

Girl Scouts of all ages are invited to a special, one-hour webinar to meet Girl Scout alum and former Lieutenant Governor of Colorado, Donna Lynne on Thursday, October 8, 2020 at  4 p.m.

Register now: https://www.girlscoutsofcolorado.org/en/events-repository/2020/meet_an_expert_speci.html

Girls will learn how the governor’s office functions, what the day-to-day looks like in the office, and about the former Lieutenant Governor’s background and education. Following the former Lt. Governor’s presentation, girls will participate in a live Q&A session moderated by Girl Scout staff.

Participating in this webinar will fulfill Step Two of the NEW democracy badges for all levels, find out about state government (https://www.girlscoutshop.com/BADGES-PROGRAM/NEW-FEATURED-ITEMS4/new-civics-badges).

We will use Zoom to host this webinar. All information on how to join online or via phone will be emailed out to registrants the day before the webinar. Each individual participant should be registered so we can track participation. Please do not share the information on how to join with others who have not registered. The webinar will be recorded and posted to GSCO’s YouTube channel for girls to access in the future.

Questions? Email aimee.artzer@gscolorado.org.

Learn more about Donna Lynne

Donna Lynne, DrPH, is the Chief Operating Officer of Columbia University Medical Center and the CEO of Columbia Doctors, an 1800 member faculty practice organization. Until early 2019, she was Colorado’s 49th Lieutenant Governor and Chief Operating Officer. Prior to assuming her roles in Colorado state government, Dr. Lynne served as the executive vice president of Kaiser Foundation Health Plan Inc. and Kaiser Foundation Hospitals, and as group president responsible for its Colorado, Pacific Northwest and Hawaii regions – overseeing an $8 billion budget, 1.4 million members and 16,000 employees. She participated in numerous boards and commissions during her time at Kaiser Permanente, including the Denver Museum of Nature and Science, the Denver Public Schools Foundation Board, the Denver Metro Chamber of Commerce and many others.

She has been recognized as one of the top women business leaders in Denver and one of the top 25 Women in Healthcare in the nation. Dr. Lynne also spent 20 years working in various positions in New York City government including First Deputy Commissioner at the Office of Labor Relations, Director of the Mayor’s Office of Operations, and Senior Vice President of the New York City Health and Hospitals Corp.

She holds a bachelor’s degree in Economics and Political Science from University of New Hampshire, a Masters of Public Administration from George Washington University, and a Doctor of Public Health from Columbia University. In 2014, Dr. Lynne received an honorary doctorate of public service from the University of Denver, and in 2017 an honorary bachelor of science degree in nursing from Colorado Mountain College. She has been an adjunct professor at Columbia University since 2005. She resides in New York and Colorado with her husband and enjoys activities such as climbing all of Colorado’s fourteeners, participating in Ride the Rockies and going on ski challenges around the world. Dr. Lynne has three children and two stepchildren.

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.

Local Girl Scout Alum Breaks Barriers and Gives Back

Girl Scouts of Colorado is excited to have Laura Vetos as our special guest at Tools for Independence – Older Girl Edition Club meeting on August 26, 2020.  Laura will be teaching high school girls first-aid basics, how to make a basic splint, the dangers of drug and alcohol abuse, and how to recognize drug and alcohol overdose and what to do in that situation.  This meeting satisfies the requirements for Senior First Aid badge Steps Three and Four, as well as Senior Safety Award Step Five.

Register here: https://gscolorado.formstack.com/forms/tools_for_independence_first_aid_drug_and_alcohol_abuse_virtual_08_26_2020

More about Laura Vetos

Laura Vetos, born and raised in Colorado, grew up as a Girl Scout in Wheat Ridge.  She attended the Air Force Academy until her mom got sick and she dropped out. Instead of giving up on her dreams of serving her country, Laura went to EMT training and became the first female firefighter for Englewood Fire Department.

Over the course of her 28-year career, Laura served her community as a firefighter with specialized training in Confined Spaces and Hazardous Materials, Paramedic, SWAT Medic, and continued to break barriers by becoming a fire lieutenant, fire captain, and acting battalion chief.

Laura retired from firefighting in 2015, but still wanted to serve her community.  She currently works as an ER-based paramedic in Aurora.  She performs many of the same duties as a nurse in an ER.

Laura loves to care for others in a friendly and helpful manner.  She loves Girl Scouts and any group that helps women become their best.  When she is not at work, Laura likes to spend time in the mountains hiking, fishing, riding her bike, and spending time with her family, friends, and dog, Bailey.

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.

Two Sisters Experience the Juliette Low Seminar from Different Hubs

Submitted by Krista Beucler

Northern & Northeastern CO

Fort Collins

The Juliette Low Seminar takes place about once every three years, and, in 2019, it took place in 18 hub locations around the world, all at the same time. We learned about the new WAGGGS leadership mindsets, the UN Sustainable Development Goals, and how to fight gender barriers to leadership.

Girl Guides and Scouts from all over the world would be participating in JLS at the various hubs and we were so excited to see old friends and make new friends. I was assigned to the Thailand hub and my sister, Anna, was assigned to the Nigeria hub. All of the hubs were unique, but also shared the camaraderie of participating in a world movement. Since Anna and I participated in the same seminar in two different hubs, we’d love to share with you how our experiences were similar and different.

How did you get there? What was your hub like? Who was there?

Krista: After about 30 hours of travel (graciously paid for by Diane Saber and supported by the Look Wider Scholarship), I arrived in Bangkok and was met by representatives from the Girl Guide Association of Thailand. They brought me back to the GGAT headquarters where the participants would all be staying and experiencing the seminar. The Thailand hub hosted 23 participants representing 14 different countries, and five facilitators each from a different country. Helping our facilitators was the wonderful Thai logistics team made up of GGAT members who helped to keep the whole week running smoothly. Of our 23 participants, five were local Guide leaders in Thailand. In Thailand, schools decide if they want to participate in Guides and if they do, then all the girls in the school become Guides and their teachers are the leaders. My favorite part of attending international Guiding and Scouting events is always making new friends and learning more about their countries and their Guide organizations.

Anna: My journey started with research and obtaining a visa to visit Nigeria. Once on my way, I spent 24-ish hours between driving, flying, and layovers getting to the hub in Lagos. I was also met by local guides at the airport and was surprised by a familiar face! I had met Debbie last year when I volunteered at Kusafiri during the JLS facilitators training and now she was here in charge of the logistics team for Nigeria Hub! Such a small world! Nigeria Hub was located at a conference center near the airport in Lagos. We had 25 participants representing 14 countries. I definitely want to thank Diane Saber and the Look Wider Scholarship for making our trip possible!

How did you communicate?

K: Our hub took place in English, though we often paused to make sure everyone understood and the Thai participants helped to translate for each other.

A: While Hausa, Igbo, and Yoruba are widely spoken, the official language of Nigeria is English. Many of the countries surrounding Nigeria were colonized by France and speak French, so Nigeria Hub was conducted in French and English.

What did you eat?

K: Thai food! Our fabulous kitchen prepared us a variety of traditional Thai dishes throughout the week. My personal favorites were pad Thai and cashew chicken.

A: Lots of jollof rice! Other Nigerian favorites on offer included pepper soup, fried rice, boli, and groundnut. They made sure we were never hungry with the usual mix of meats, seafood, bean, rice, and of course, plantains all cooked in a myriad of combinations.

What was a typical day like?

K: The weeklong seminar basically involved learning about the six leadership mindsets that make up the new WAGGGS leadership model, gender barriers to leadership, and the Sustainable Development Goals during the daytime sessions. In the evenings we did activities like Thai culture night and international night. Thai night involved performances of traditional dance by local students, learning Thai crafts and games, and trying Thai snacks. At international night, each of the participants set up a table and shared snacks, badges, and small gifts from our countries. We also all shared short performances of dances, songs, and games from our countries. I brought some Girl Scout Cookies to share and taught everyone the classic camp song, Fred the Moose.

A: Krista summed it up! I imagine all of the hubs had similar sessions on the WAGGGS leadership mindsets, gender barriers to leadership, and the Sustainable Development Goals, but facilitated in different ways according to the culture of the location. And of course, we celebrated Nigeria night instead of Thai night!

Did you connect with other hubs?

K: Yes! During our opening ceremony we Skyped with the Taiwan hub, which passed the international guiding light to us, ceremonially lighting our candles, and we passed it on to the Maldives hub during their opening ceremony. We also got to Skype with other ‘mystery hubs’ where we played a guessing game to figure out where they were located. We spoke to Poland and the Maldives as mystery hubs. We also got to call into one of the UK hubs to hear Nicola Grinstead, former chair of the World Board, give a short speech. There was also a WAGGGS event app that helped us connect with others by posting photos in the participant space and message scouts from other hubs. I messaged Lisa at the Nigeria hub and Priya from the Sangam hub and we shared what we were doing at our hubs.

A: Despite trouble with technology, we managed to connect with Kusafiri in Tanzania for their presentation by Kate. Kate now works with Days for Girls in Tanzania educating young women on menstrual hygiene and female genital mutilation. Her journey to this point in her life was not easy. She told us how she escaped female genital mutilation herself by hiding in the trunk of a visiting family’s car when they left to return to thier home. She lived on the street for a time and used drugs before being befriended by a local pastor who helped her. She summed up her story by saying that sometimes you only need one person to see you and you may never realize how much you have helped someone by seeing them and reaching out to them. This inspiring thought helped us to start brainstorming our 100 girls projects. Besides this connection there were other attempts that did not work to connect virtually with other hubs but we knew they were there thinking of us as we connected on the online participant space.

Did you get to be tourists?

K: There was some time to be tourists in Bangkok. I arrived one day early for the Seminar and had a chance to visit a floating market and Wat Pho, one of the most famous temples in Bangkok, with two of the other participants–ladies from England and Madagascar. One evening, we also had free time to go out to dinner. The Thai participants wrangled the rest of us through busy public transportation to an open air market and we all had dinner together. After the seminar was over, I stayed a few extra days to visit an elephant sanctuary in Chiang Rai and see a few more of the sights in Bangkok.

A: We mostly stayed in the hotel learning about leadership, the Sustainable Development Goals and the culture of Nigeria. We were surprised on our community day with a visit to the Lekki Conservation Center where we got to do the longest canopy walk in Africa! We challenged ourselves and got to see views of the city. That day as we were driving around we got to see some of Lagos and drove over the longest bridge in Nigeria!

What was the most inspiring part of the seminar?

K: In preparation for our 100 Girls Project, we did a mini Lead Out Loud project in small patrols. Each patrol was to address a gender barrier and do a small project that would reach 30 people in four hours. I was pretty skeptical that we could have even that much impact in such a short time. My group decided to talk about catcalling and harassment women experience on the street. We made a Google survey asking about people’s experiences with catcalling and we filmed some video clips with people on the street and our fellow participants, asking them to share opinions and experiences. We made a poster with the results of our survey and after four hours we had received 40 responses. I was surprised we had managed to reach that many in such a short time, but I was even more surprised when I kept checking the results of the survey over the next few days and we had more than 400 responses from people from all over the world aged 14 to 55, more than 95% of which reported having been catcalled. Hearing about the mini projects the other groups at my hub did, I was surprised at the reach all of us were able to achieve. It taught me about the power of social media and teamwork, and helped make the 100 Girls Project seem less daunting.

A: The most inspiring part of the seminar for me was interacting with the other participants and discussing issues in their community. It inspired me to see how dedicated this group of young women was to making their world a better place.

Did you spend any time in the community?

K: We had a day to visit a community outside of Bangkok called Baan Khoksalung to learn about community development and leadership. The community is primarily from the Thai Bueng ethnic group and has faced some challenges related to the flooding of the nearby reservoir which wiped out a lot of their agricultural activities and forced many families to move. As a way to both preserve their traditional culture and identity, and to supplement their income, the community set up a local museum that hosts tourists for the day or overnight and shares dances, traditional craft making (mostly weaving and toy making), and cooking with guests. Baan Khoksalung is just one of many local museums all over Thailand that has found a unique way to keep their cultural traditions alive in a changing world. The community was so welcoming to us and shared their strategies for leadership in the community: dialogue, networking, system thinking, and strategy. The community really stressed communication as a way to bring happiness and harmony, and a way for the young people to learn from the elders, and in turn, for the elders to learn from the young people. We had the chance to learn traditional weaving of cloth and reed mats, and how to cook Thai pancakes.

We got to hear from a member of a local organization that supports leadership in business on our community day. She talked about gender equality and led a few activities on gender equality. After we went to EduPoint, a company that was started by graduates of the business leadership program that connects students with tutors. This was followed by lunch and tour of the Nigeria Girl Guide Association Headquarters. All of us participants did a Stop the Violence photoshoot on the roof of the headquarters. We got to meet with local Scouts from our logistics team and all went on the canopy walk together.

What is the 100 Girls Project?

K: At the end of our seminar, each of us returned home with a plan to share what we had learned about the leadership mindsets, the STGs, and gender equality with 100 girls and young women. While in Thailand, I made a plan for my 100 Girls Project, hoping to share what I learned at Our Chalet as a volunteer, and during my planned volunteering at a leadership workshop for young women in Guatemala this fall. With COVID-19, everything is pretty uncertain. I won’t be going to Our Chalet this summer, and Girl Scout camp won’t be in session either, nor will I be going to Guatemala. So right now, I’m working on a new plan to create an Instagram campaign about the WAGGGS leadership mindsets, sharing activities and inspiration for girls who are stuck at home. The Creative and Critical Thinking leadership mindset helps us adapt when things don’t go as planned and helps us find unique solutions to new problems.

A: I’m hoping to create a program for girls in Colorado who are thinking about doing a Gold Award. The program will help girls think about the WAGGGS leadership mindsets and the UN Sustainable Development Goals to identify a project that meets a need in their community. The goal will be to help girls create really thoughtful and impactful projects that make their world a better place.

That sounds awesome! How do I get involved in more international Guiding opportunities?

Anna and Krista: We’re so glad you asked! A lot of people are surprised when we tell them all of the international opportunities we have had through Girl Scouts, but we think it’s really important to remind everyone that Guiding and Scouting is a global movement and we’re all working together to support girls and young women of courage, confidence, and character around the world. If you’re still an active girl member, you can plan your own international trip! I recommend trying to connect with a troop in the country you want to visit to learn more about Scouting in their country, or visiting a World Center for a program. You can also check out GSUSA’s Destinations. If you are an adult volunteer, you can also participate in World Center programs, or you can volunteer or intern at the World Centers. Anna and I have both been World Center volunteers and we highly recommend it. Join the Global Leadership Opportunities pool, follow WAGGGS on social media, and check their website periodically to find out about global events like JLS. Scholarships are available to support girls who want to participate in international events, so make sure you check those out! The Look Wider Scholarship for Colorado girls is always a good place to start. We have made so many international friends and have gotten to feel like a part of a global movement; we just cannot recommend getting involved in international Guiding enough.

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